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Teen girls talk more to parents about their dating habits than do boys
Date:5/6/2010

the types of things they did to show their affection, such as holding hands, kissing and going steady.

Daddis found that adolescents were more willing to talk to their parents about their date's identity and how they showed affection. Specifically, girls disclosed information more often than boys, and with both sexes the mother was their primary confidant. Also, results showed that younger and older adolescents were equally willing to talk to their parents about those two topics.

All adolescents disclosed little about what they did when unsupervised and whether they had sex. There was no distinction between sexes when it concerned issues involving sex and supervision, so neither girls or boys expressed eagerness to talk to their parents about it.

However, on most issues, younger adolescents showed a significantly higher level of communication than older adolescents. The study found that teens who reported a higher level of trust with their parents also disclosed more. Daddis was surprised that the connection between trust and disclosure was especially strong for girls, and particularly for issues related to sex and supervision.

"It is important for the parents to provide an environment where the child can feel comfortable and trusting. The presence of a trusting relationship between parent and teen creates an climate for healthy development of autonomy," said Daddis.

In addition, the researchers found that teens were more likely to discuss issues that they thought could involve harm to others and that may have severe consequences.

"We found that adolescents were more willing to talk to their parents about an issue if they felt that it would render harm to themselves or have some consequences that may affect others."

Daddis said parents should realize that it is natural for teens to seek more independence and to draw boundaries around what they reveal.

"Developing a trusting relationship is on
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Contact: Christopher Daddis
daddis.1@osu.edu
740-725-6109
Ohio State University
Source:Eurekalert

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