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Is a 15 year old girlfriend too young?

thewilliam 9 6.1k
30 Sep 2012 10:23AM
While thinking about a recent case when a 15 year old girl ran off with one of her teachers, I was reminded of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet.

At the start of the play, Juliet had reached her 14th birthday and her mother was complaining that Juliet was still single. The mother reminded her that, when she was 14, she'd been pregnant with Juliet.

Is a 15 year old girlfriend too young?

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Gaucho 16 2.8k 2 United Kingdom
30 Sep 2012 10:30AM
Not in France apparently.
adrian_w Plus
10 3.7k 4 England
30 Sep 2012 10:33AM
For a 30 year old teacher--yes!
But you do make an interesting point. I know that the age of consent is 14 in a number of countries. Physically many girls are mature at that age ( ready for breeding?) but are they mentally mature enough to cope? Most of those countries are in the east/far east where maybe family support is closer.
User_Removed 8 299 4 France
30 Sep 2012 10:37AM
Maybe its the young lady who has grown up in our "modern world" who should answer that one!!!!!
We seem to expect so much from kids these days including the ability to be responsible for their actions, perhaps its that time..... for on a personal level im sure she was aware of what she was doing and what the consequences may well be...if not then we have all failed and maybe this is what makes us so self righteous and huffy when these things happen. If all the cases that actually take place throughout the western world were reported there wouldnt be enough space on the web never mind in the press.
Newdevonian 5 466 United Kingdom
30 Sep 2012 10:39AM
There is a sixteen year difference between my son and daughter in law. Am I shocked? No.
The young lady in question from her photos, looks like a young women, not a girl. Do I condemn this partnership? No!
I do question the man's morals, leaving his wife from a marriage which is less than one year old. Yes!
30 Sep 2012 11:01AM
Not for another 15 year old. For a man of 30 - need you ask this question?
puertouk 6 1.1k 17 United Kingdom
30 Sep 2012 11:36AM
I think kids try and grow up too quick these days. Some of these young girls look more like 20. I went to my sons school to collect him for the first time, as he usually gets the school bus. I noticed a young woman standing about 200 yards away and thought she looked nice. When she walked over to get into a car close to mine I was horrified to see she was around 15/16 years old. I thought she was a parent. What would she look like when she wore makeup? Jail bait. I blame the parents. They encourage their kids to dress up in skirts that are no larger than my scarf! What are these parents thinking about letting their kids dress like this. If anything happens to them, they are the first ones to scream blue murder. Call me old fashioned, but I think 16 is young enough to start going out with the opposite sex.
Eastlands 7 760 4 Northern Ireland
30 Sep 2012 11:51AM
The celebrity culture and the major retailers have a lot to answer for ( e.g. padded bras for children ) in encouraging children to appear grown up before their time.
Sooty_1 7 1.5k 221 United Kingdom
30 Sep 2012 11:58AM
You have to remember that a. Romeo and Juliet is fiction, and that b. Shakespeare lived in the 16th century, when children were expected to be adult by their teens and people were extremely lucky to live into what we consider old age. Disease and accident free, 60 was a goodly age to reach for the rich and well fed, and most poorer people could take 10-20 years off that. Plus, weathlthy men often took much younger wives and it was accepted in society that frequently happened.

The issue isn't that there is a large age difference, after all, what if it was an 18 year old teaching assistant? 3 years age gap isn't unusual. The issue is that he abused a position of trust with a minor in his care. The question of professionalism came up on another thread, well this is a case of him not behaving professionally. If they really loved each other, they should have waited until she had left the school before starting a relationship. The issue of him leaving his family is up to him to deal with, and not for the press or public. I'm sure he had his reasons, after all, this is not a covert affair he can hide.
The girl may have been seduced by the excitement of running away, but I find it hard to believe she wasn't as guilty by allowing it to happen. In none of the pictures does she look unwilling to be there.

I see no problem with an age gap. What do you think is a 'reasonable' or 'unreasonable' age differential?

Hali 7 44 Scotland
30 Sep 2012 11:59AM
Don't forget that in the 17th Century, average life expectancy was 40 years, so I don't think you can compare then to now in terms of whether 15 years is too young.

I know what I was like at 15 years old. I thought I was grown up and thought I should be allowed to make all my own decisions, but had I been left to it, I'd have no doubt made some really shocking ones which might well have affected the rest of my life.

And also don't forget how hormones rule a teenagers' emotions. A 15 year old is capable of the feeling that they are completely and totally 'in love' but for the vast majority this will in fact only prove to be a 'crush' which they will have grown out of.
Sooty_1 7 1.5k 221 United Kingdom
30 Sep 2012 12:00PM
Maybe "Lolita" should be more appropriate than "Romeo and Juliet"?
Pat_Stones 6 129 United Kingdom
30 Sep 2012 12:47PM
Couple of people saying "not for a 30 year old"

Perhaps they can identify the cut off point for 15 year olds? 20? 25? or otherwise.
Boyd 14 11.2k 11 Wales
30 Sep 2012 12:48PM
If only Jimmy Saville were alive, we could have asked him.
cozzmic 6 23
30 Sep 2012 12:50PM
I started going out with my wife when she was 15 and married at 17 and just coming up to out 30th anni next year. So it can work. Saying that I was only 3 years older than her.
ianrobinson Plus
8 1.2k 8 United Kingdom
30 Sep 2012 1:35PM
When I was fifteen all I thought about was girls and to be honest I still do at 46 relationships work or they don't at what ever age.
I am married to a woman 8 years younger than myself and it works very well considering as a man i am more immature than another woman of my age so it makes perfect sense for me to be with a younger woman who has the same mentality as me, I don't feel old and i don't feel 46 I feel 30 in mind and body so I don't see a problem myself.
Law is Law though and that must be respected or pay the consequence.

I personally don't agree with a lot of the laws in this country but then who am I but a single Mortal being in a vast world of corruption and rules that suit those that make them.

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