Serious relationships in high school


New member
Oct 15, 2020
Short background...I am the guardian to my soon to be 18-year-old niece. She is a senior in high school, a great student, and a well-behaved kid despite her rocky upbringing. Her parents were never married and addicts her entire childhood. We (me, husband, 2 teens) offered to take her in because her mother was moving out of state with her abusive boyfriend (niece witnessed abuse from toddler to 12 years) and her father was unable to care for her. He passed away shortly after she moved in with us. We have always included my niece in everything since she was born so she was already like a daughter and sister to my other two.

She has been dating a peer from school for the last year. He's very nice, respectful and treats her well. I have absolutely nothing against him. My worry is with her. She seems obsessed with him. She has two classes this year and works PT. She is also on the cheer squad but that hasn't been keeping her too busy because of the pandemic. She had a few girlfriends here and there but only talks with them if he is busy and she is bored. She's basically lost if he isn't around and just sits by the phone waiting for him to be available. They had a little falling out a few weeks back and she begged for his forgiveness for days. Apparently, she was talking to some other boy that she met months ago over text, nothing but friendship talk. He was upset about it. There may be more to it, either way, I wasn't happy about her begging for days.

She recently asked if she could attend a 3-day concert with him a few states away next summer. They were also planning to spend beach week (senior week) together just before the concert. My husband and I are a bit old-fashioned and conservative and aren't really on board with BF/GF sleepovers until a bit older so we told her she couldn't do either unless a parent was present. It's also a year away, a lot can happen with a teen relationship in a year. I know she thinks they will get married - maybe they will.

I want to see her succeed and have ambition for herself, and not base her early adult years around a boy. She plans to go to college but refuses to look out of state because of him. I've always encouraged my kids, including her, to stay home as long as possible and save their money. There is a good chance we would lift the sleepover restrictions as she gets older but I'm not quite ready to do that right of high school.

I'm not exactly sure what I'm looking for, maybe someone with the same experience. Any thoughts or advice? Am I being too overprotective? She has NO ONE to help her other than us if things go downhill.

I moved out when I was 19 and bought a house with my now-husband by the time I was 20. I chose the path of no college, working full time, and adulthood while my close friends chose college and friends and moved out when they got married after college. I don't regret my choice but I wish one of our parents had said just slow down.