My Freshman is Invited to the Prom. Now What??

That time of year is coming up. 

Time for Valentine’s Day dance, Spring Fling, and most importantly, the Prom!  Can’t believe that hasn’t been phased out yet, but it is actually going stronger than ever.  I’m not here to talk about how much to spend on the big night, what part parents should play, or whether to rent a limo to save them from drunk driving (what?).  We can get to that on another day. 

Today, I want to talk about when to go to the prom. 

It’s so funny.  Parents can put so much meaning into this one event.  It seems they are reliving their own proms.  Whether they were allowed to go.  When they were allowed to go.  What were the worst things that happened at their proms?  Yet, think about it.  That was probably over 25 or 30 years ago.  Each generation is its’ own.  In fact, I think the current generations are just a little bit smarter than ours were.  They plan ahead, the parents are uber involved, and

There is much more supervision than when I was a teenager.

When my youngest was only a freshman in high school, yes she was invited to a prom at another school.  What to do?  I had no idea.  My first inclination was to say no.  But some teachers and even an assistant principal advised me to let her go.  So, I did.  We didn’t buy a new dress; she borrowed one.  I had her check in several times during the evening.  I don’t really know everything that happened (probably a good thing) but she made it home in one piece.  Yes, I was a little nervous. 

Sometimes you just have to send your kids out into the world. 

As I got more experienced with proms, I always hosted the after after- prom “party” at my house.  You see I wanted the kids at my house.  More importantly, I wanted to know where my daughter was and that she was safe and sound.  Yes, some might call this a coed sleepover (which I do not condone.)  It actually wasn’t.  It was just a place for them to crash, get a few hours sleep, and have breakfast.  A rite of passage, you might say, staying out all night.  The only thing that shocked me at the time was that only one parent called me beforehand to double check that we had actually invited all the kids and that we were going to be present.  It was a guy’s parent, no less; someone that knew me, as well. 

Parents out there, I would say it’s never a bad idea to check out ahead of time where the kids will be on prom night, who is driving or how they are getting from one place to another, and what times will they be changing locations.  I would definitely call any host parents to make sure they are really hosting and parents will be on site.  That’s the best you can do.  It’s your responsibility, really.  And it gives accountability to the students. 

It’s all about expectations and ground rules.

After that, just enjoy the experience for your kids.  Try not to worry.  Right! Most prom nights have drama.  As you read in my daughter’s blog, I am my Mother’s Daughter.  Now What? , she once called her dad to come and get her from the after prom event as her date was not treating her well.  (I have no idea on that one.  Remember, no questions.) On the whole, the night usually turns out okay.  I mean, after all, it’s not just for Juniors.

Everyone Goes to the Prom.