Unfair Punishment?

By Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

My boyfriend and I have known each other for 3 years and have been dating on and off for 2 and a half years. Recently we just started dating again. It has been 3 months. Yesterday, we were are my house just hanging out. No one is allowed in my house while my parents aren’t home, but I thought it would be alright considering that I thought no one would be home for several hours and they wouldn’t find out. One thing led to another and we went into my room and beg. To have sex. My mom came home about 4 hours early and heard us having sex. She told my boyfriend to leave.
After he left my house my mom told me that she was going to tell my dad. Once he got home, she told him what happened. He permanently took my car away and grounded me until the end of winter. Both of parents said that they are disgusted in me and that they have never been so disrespected before. They won’t talk to me, they just give me a list of chores to do. Im convinced that they are ashamed of me and no longer want me as a daughter. How do I get through to them and make them understand that I’m truly sorry for what I did?

A: You are getting a hard lesson in what it means to betray trust. I doubt your parents don’t want you to be their daughter. I do understand why they are so disappointed in you. Not only did you disobey their household rules but you apparently violated their values about when it’s appropriate to have sex.

I hope by the time you get this response, things have settled down some. You and your parents need to have a serious talk about values and rules. This shouldn’t be an argument. At 17, you are still dependent on them. Unless you are able and willing to go off on your own, you do need to graciously accept that they have more say in what you do in their home than you may think is reasonable. If your boyfriend loves you, he will respect your parents’ wishes and will apologize to them as well. Behave respectfully and helpfully and hopefullly you’ll be able to have a reasonable discussion with your folks about how to live together in a loving way.

In only another year, you’ll be out of high school and able to start an adult life of your own. At that point, you may make different decisions about how to live your life.

I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 7 Nov 2012

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2012). Unfair Punishment?. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 28, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2012/11/07/unfair-punishment/