The Rose, my beautiful Rose, appears to have a boyfriend.
She’s 17.5 yrs old.
Anyone who has read this blog will know of The Rose’s long held desire for romance.
Any parent with a daughter whether on or off the scale, will know how that feels. It’s horrifying at the best of times – but it’s unbelievably scary when that daughter struggles to make friends, is unpredictable, suggestible and easy lead…plus gorgeous, has hormones with flashing lights on and doesn’t think that Nicki Minaj isn’t anything other than a wholesome, natural blond.
I try not to be over protective. I do. And I trust The Rose with every rule I have given her – it’s just the ones I haven’t which scare me.
Like two nights ago.
The Boyfriend in Waiting’s name had been mentioned at home more than twice. Enough to arouse suspicion and last night when I was going to bed and passed her bedroom door, I heard The Rose talking into her mobile phone in a bright, over helpful, sugary, giggly voice. I smelled danger. I stopped and I listened.
Yes, yes I know, I KNOW! Rights of privacy and respect – I KNOW…. but Asperger Girls? I mean, come on!
So I listened (and you would have done too, you know you would!).
The Rose appeared to be telling someone about herself. I mean about her INNER ‘herself’.
She told them she was ‘crazy’ and ‘mad’. That she said what she thought. She described herself as ‘random’ and that she sometimes changed the conversation when things came into her head and as she just ‘had to get them out’, that it was ‘a bit awkward’ and people would just have to accept it, “if that’s ok?”
I’d never heard her describe herself that way ever before. I felt like a spy.
But the conversation went on. She started to arrange a date to meet.
The next day actually! A day when she wasn’t at college! A day when she would be alone at home, Oh sweet Jesus – this was serious.
And then it just happened. She said it.
“So do you have condoms? I’m ready if you are? I’m definitely going to try it”
I didn’t hear the rest of the conversation because my ears had filled with a rushing sound as my heart squeezed and my stomach tightened. What was I going to do? She’s 17. It’s legal. She knows about condoms!
I paced rapidly back and forth in front of her door like a caged animal. Then, with a supreme act of tongue biting control I dived into her room like a popping champagne cork.
The Rose stopped talking and looked up and (almost) at me.
“You are not going to have sex with anyone tomorrow”, I said too loudly and too soon.
The Rose spoke into her phone “Oh shit. Mum says we can’t have sex tomorrow. Good bye”
Some miracle kept me from bellowing. But as sometimes happens when The Rose is adrenaline fuelled and the situation unambiguous, she talked.
Despite my prior coaching, detailing and pragmatism about sex and kissing and boys – it turns out I have never mapped out exactly how a relationship goes.
And when you read magazines but don’t actually have close friends to talk with, then it turns out you make up your own schedule:
Here it is. Boys and girls:
- Speak on the phone or FaceBook and like the same thing e.g. football
- Have sex
- Maybe go for a walk or skip about in a fountain
- Tell other people you have had sex
- Agree to be a boy or girlfriend and then see each other every day and never speak to anyone else ever.
That is the end.
It’s a big commitment, I could see why she chose to leap straight into bed.
Once we’d rearranged the order of things and ended the list with… and when you trust him and feel safe and you’ve know each other for like AT LEAST 10 YEARS – then possibly you can sleep together.
“Ohhhh” she said as if I had just explained directions to Subway. “I get it. So I should just invite him over or something to play FIFA on the X Box?”
And as casually as that, having never invited anyone over ever before, he arrived gently, like a hush.
He seems nice. She seems calm around him – and so far no sign of skipping about in fountains.