Concerned Parents

My son is in his freshmen year of college at FSU and wants to go to Miami with some Black and white friends for Spring Break. My husband and I are a bit apprehensive about him going. While I know he is considered an adult, I am still his mother and we get the last word. I truly don’t believe he is quite ready to handle that kind of freedom. My husband believes we should let him go. I suggested we ask you because you have successfully raised all yours. I must admit I like your advice, my husband does too. Not all of it, but most of it (lol). What kind of advice do you have for parents that have a nerd for a son that is trying to be cool and really doesn’t have a clue. I am leery he will go down there and get hurt or get someone pregnant. Should we let him go? If we do decide to let him go, how do we prepare him for all that unsupervised fun?

--Concerned parents.

Dear Concerned Parents,

Speak positively about the trip and he may or may not go. Speak negatively and that is all that will be on his mind. Always try to respond positively, so you will get to add your opinion and advice. Even if you say no, he will more than likely go anyway. With todays technology and cell phones, it’s hard to monitor where they are, especially when they live in a different city. Believe it or not, if he mentioned it, he has already decided to go. If you do not respond positively, next time he will not tell you and you will not be privy to his plans. Instead you may hear about their trips after the deed is done, after graduation or when you bail him out of jail. Lord have mercy. The object is to maintain a bit of control.

You’re right, he is an adult so acknowledge that by telling him how great that sounds and that you and his dad will help him and his boys get a nice room. He will immediately be grateful and you will be privy to the plans. If that is not an option for you, still offer to help find him a hotel so you will know where and how he is staying. Once you offer to help them, you will have access to their plans and the opportunity to sit down and give him that speech about “trouble is easy to get in, but hard to get out of.” Don’t just talk to him, talk to his buddies too. Because “the company he keeps, has everything to do with the trouble he meets.” You should not assume his friends got good sense because most of them don’t, at that age.

Have a conversation about not getting anyone pregnant and not ruining their lives in a night. Make sure he and his buddies have plenty of condoms, Don’t assume that they do. Buy them and let his dad give them to him. Tell him if he lay down with dogs, he may gets fleas. Tell him do not lay with anyone he can’t bring home to momma, because condoms do come off and he doesn’t need any strays all over the state. Tell him everything that looks like a girl is not necessarily a girl and that boys get raped too. Tell him AIDS is rampant and there are some diseases out here that there is not a cure for. So don’t be out drinking alone. Talk to them about designated drivers and that there should always be one of them sober to look out for the crew.

Tell him you may have the hook up on some tickets for the spring bling concert. Then try to purchase tickets to one or two events, so they will have some structure and not just hanging out on the beach and streets the whole time. If he has tickets to the concerts, you know he will be in a supervised environment at some point in time during the trip.

Last but not least remind him and his friends that he is still a Black man in America and the police may not treat him like they treat them. Be conscious not to put him in any bad situations. Tell him if a situation doesn’t feel right trust his gut and say, “Jesus Jesus Jesus.” There’s power in the Name... demons flee. Pray fervently for your son but let him go live his life and live it more abundantly. In all that we do, we must be optimistic and pray.

Tampa Bay Tammy

Tampa Bay Tammy is COO of N-TOUCH News. She gives advice through her column Dear Girlfriend to entertain and enlighten her readers from near and far. 

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