Home > Lifestyle > Teen > Your relationships Updated 17 April 2015 How to deal with your teen’s first love Your love-strung teenager has gone from being your little angel to someone’s high-school sweetheart. How best to handle it? 0 Shutterstock Related Sexting: are your kids doing it? One-third of US teens suffer date abuse The beginner's guide to dating boys Teens with happy parents have happy marriages Strict parents linked to internet addiction Parents no happier than childless couples Ask Teen Expert » Quiz Will the relationship last? » Test Push-ups » From girl to woman From boy to man You may be a cool parent, but the blushing, texting, and giggling that starts once your teenager falls in love could leave you a little uneasy. You may still be obsessed with keeping them out of harm's way (what if they were rejected or hurt, or what if they fell pregnant?!) To ensure that your protective instinct doesn’t turn you into a violent monster-parent, here are 5 healthy ways to deal with the transition:1. Set boundariesYour teenager needs to be aware of your rules and what you’ll tolerate when it comes to their new romance. If you make your child a part of the rule-setting process, they are more likely to stick to them. “It is best for boundaries to be created by both the parent and the teenager so that each party understands the other's reasoning and concerns,” says Daryn Jones, high school counsellor and teen expert in the Western Cape. 2. Have the sex talkAs uncomfortable as this may be, it is necessary that you have age-appropriate talks with your child about sex and sexuality as well as healthy and unhealthy relationships. Jones suggests that this should be an ongoing discussion as your child develops and needs to deal with the various emotions and complexities of life. Read: How to get your kids to really talk to you3. Be welcomingBe inviting towards your child’s partner when he/she comes to your home. This will help you better monitor how the relationship is developing and gauge whether it is healthy for your child.It will also allow the partner to become accustomed to your rules and boundaries. Read: Teens look at parents as role models4. Lead by exampleShow your child what a healthy relationship looks like by modelling respect, compromise, and love as healthy relationship traits. A Canadian study showed teens look to the example set by their parents before they are influenced by friends and the media. The study also showed that the teens who saw their parents as role models most often came from families where talking about sexuality is encouraged. 5. Don't judgeYou may be tempted to tease your teen or laugh it off as puppy love - don't do it. A person's first love is extremely powerful and remembered for the rest of their life. Rather step back, support and remember your own experience all those years ago. Sources: Health24; Parenting todayRead more:Teens with happy parents have happy marriagesWhen young love hurtsMake nice with Mom Yentl Barros NEXT ON HEALTH24X Experience a contact lens that feels like nothing 2016-10-24 12:49 More: TeenYour relationships advertisement Read Health24’s Comments Policy Comment on this story 0 comments Comments have been closed for this article. Logout Comment 0 characters remaining Share on Facebook Loading comments... From our sponsors Sun protection for all children Understanding your sunscreen The science behind cosmeceuticals Do you know these 5 facts about skincare? Live healthier The debate continues » Working out in the concrete jungle 7 top butt exercises for guys 10 things pole dancing can do for you The running vs. walking debate There are many different theories when it comes to the running vs. walking for health and weight loss. Veganism a crime? » Running the Comrades Marathon on a vegan diet Are vegans unnatural beasts? Can a vegan be really healthy? Should it be a crime to raise a baby on vegan food? After a number of cases of malnourishment in Italy, it may become a crime to feed children under 16 a vegan diet.