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My mother’s warning to me was, “Don’t do it.” In retrospect, I wish she had offered more education to me about changes in my body, etc., but that wasn’t my mother’s style. I wasn’t perfect (and I’m still not) but I knew having sex when I was a teenager was not the answer for me. I was a poor black girl from the inner city. I knew having a baby then would ruin any chances I had to succeed. I had seen it happen to many others.

So, again, while I applaud you for talking to your daughter, I am confused as to why you would go out of your way to make her comfortable in your home with her sexual experiences. Some boundaries have been severely crossed, and I doubt you will ever be able to regain a certain level of respect with your daughter.

Where in the world did you get the idea for her to hang a scarf outside her door to let you know when she was in her room with her boyfriend? It is ridiculous, disrespectful and inappropriate. What will you do when your other children want to do the same thing?

You are her parents, and parents should always stay in that role. Right now, she considers you and her father to be her buddies. Trust me, a 16-year-old needs parents.

Now you are facing another dilemma: She is sexually active with more than one boy at 16. This is a mess.

Lady, it’s time for you and your husband to put a stop to this madness. This is something you both created, and you should stop it. Tell her she will no longer be allowed to have sex in your home.

You and your husband also will have to spend a great deal of time talking with her about options other than sex. You see, 16-year-olds are really not ready for sexual relationships. They are only caught up in the thrill.

Tell her she is important and she has a great future ahead of her. Tell her these boys are not going to be around for more than a few minutes before they move on to girls No. 2, 3 and 4. She is only an experiment.

Here’s the biggest and most important task for you and your husband: Tell her you made a mistake and that you are sorry for allowing this. Parents make mistakes; I’ve made many. I’m sure she will forgive you. Keep in touch and let me know what happens.

Reader responses:

• Dear Ms. Vicki,

I’ve never read your column before, and I’ve never written to anyone, but I think you missed the mark Nov. 8 with the woman who is toiling over her relocation with her husband. You should have made it very clear that’s it’s her role and responsibility to move with her husband. She should be so happy he is serving his country and should happily support him. She can finish college at any time. With what is happening to our country and in our military, her husband should not be worried about his family. Thank you for listening.

- Sheila Parks

• I love your column. I am 72, and we were in the military for four years in the 1960s. Your advice is always sound, practical and free of psychobabble, and you don’t hesitate to remind questioners of their personal responsibility.

In your Nov. 8 column, however, I think you could have suggested that the young wife concentrate on finishing her nursing studies. As an adult university student - I didn’t graduate until I was 41 - I’m sure she will find her studies stimulating and her colleagues supportive. Not only that, once she becomes a registered nurse, she will have lots of options through temporary nursing organizations for her to follow her husband to almost any post and keep her busy when he is deployed overseas. Keep up the good work.

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