When I was a teenager, I knew the parents of my boyfriends. I don’t really remember how or when or why I met them, I just did. I guess we hung out at my boyfriends’ houses and their parents were just…you know, around. I think this is a good thing. In fact, I think it’s a fabulous thing.

Before having sex with someone, teenagers should meet his/her parents. It puts the prospective lover in context, and allows them further insight into who they are. Most teenagers live with their parents, so it shouldn’t be too logistically difficult. It seems like a good, basic safety valve.

When I’ve talked about this, some parents seem to assume that teenagers would meet their girlfriend/boyfriend’s parents, and think I’m just stating an obvious fact of teenage relationships. Others are stunned that I would recommend such a thing, because it would just never happen.

What’s your perspective on this? Did you meet the parents of your early sexual partners? Do you expect to meet your teenager’s sexual partners? Is it different if the teenager is dating but not having sex?