Q&A: Should I Let My Teen Ride with New Drivers?
Teen parenting expert Rosalind Wiseman on what rules to enforce if your teenage child wants to ride in cars with older friends.
Q. My 15-year-old daughter has older friends who drive, and she wants to go out with them on the weekends. What do you think?
A. I wish we lived in a world where we would tell our kids "Don't drive with your friends," and they'd always abide by our rules. But I wouldn't be much of an advice columnist if I believed that. So what to do? Make your guidelines clear: "You can get a ride from your friends after practice but not to or from a party. If someone is driving and talking on her cell phone, texting, or changing songs on her iPod, tell her to stop talking or texting or volunteer to look for the song. And I know you know this, but the second you get in the car, your seat belt is on."
Originally published in the August 2008 issue of Family Circle magazine.