Relationships: My 16-year-old daughter is heartbroken

Dear Bunmi,

My 16-year-old daughter has been seeing an 18-year-old boy for close to a year now. My husband says he has nothing against the boy but he’s not for them seeing each other all the time. Even now that she’s finished her SS III (she’s resitting some papers), he insists that she comes home by 9p.m.

Unfortunately, my daughter and her boyfriend have just broken up. Her best friend told me she’s heart-broken though my daughter pretends she’s fine. Her friend said they broke up because the boy couldn’t cope with the hassles he’s been getting from my husband.

That he found it difficult to carry on the relationship when he knows my husband will never accept him. Do you think we’ve been too strict with her? She never confides in me but I would love to help her patch things up with this boy if she’s hurting so much.


Dear Desola,

I would leave them alone if I were you. Your daughter and her young boyfriend see you and your husband as figures of authority (that’s why your girl is being secretive.) Children assert independence from their parents by keeping secrets and often deliberately defying them.

At 16 your daughter’s emotional stability is evolving – she’s in an experimental stage. Your daughter and her boyfriend have now recognized that their seven-nights- a week infatuation is inappropriate and suffocating, that’s why they broke up.

At last they have accepted what you and her dad knew all along, they need more freedom to see other young people. Don’t blame yourself for current feelings of loss. Young hearts heal surprisingly fast. By this time next month, your daughter will either be back with her boyfriend or more probably she’ll have her eye on someone new!

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