Anna, an adolescent girl, is very much in love with her boyfriend who is three years older than she. He is putting a lot of pressure on her to have sex. At the same time, she is anxious about her parents’ attitude towards her boyfriend. Her mother constantly warns her about dating an older boy and assumes that he intends to take advantage of her.
Young Anna is experiencing new emotions along with new physical sensations triggered by hormones and the lives of her peers. There are several topics Anna needs to discuss in order to make the best decision without feeling uncomfortable or forced by her parents, her boyfriend, or even her therapist.
Anna needs to discuss the difference between what she is feeling now versus how she will feel as an adult, once the hormone levels have evened out. It is important for her to understand that what she thinks may be a long term, emotional, attachment, may end much sooner than she think and that making a decision based on these emotion may end up causing her emotional pain. By explaining to Anna that, if the love is as strong as she believes it to be, her relationship will last long enough for her to be able to make this decision without all of the physical, emotional, and peer pressure she may feel more comfortable in waiting to make such a major move with her boyfriend.
Anna is feeling pressure from her boyfriends and may fear the relationship will end if she does not have sex with him. Anna and her therapist need to take time to discuss how she sees herself and how she feels others view her. With a higher self esteem, Anna may come to understand that she doesn’t have to give in to his pressure and, if the relationship does end, that she will have plenty of chances to find someone else who she will see as just as good, or better, than her current boyfriend. Raising her self esteem may also help her feel more confident in...