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How can I control my niece from talking too much with boys?

Q: My niece is 15 years old and in the 1st year PUC. Throughout her school days, she studied in a co-ed. Till 8th she was all right, but after that she started chatting with friends. She chats a lot with boys and doesn't listen to the lectures. We are very worried. More over when I spoke to her, she said that most of the staff knows that she is the daughter of a staff member, that is why they are controlling her too much. My sister works in the same institution & is in the evening college. My sister is very concerned about her daughter's future, because every one speaks about her daughter. More over my sister work in 2 jobs (day & evening) hence she was raised in her grandparents' home. When I speak to my niece, she says that I should have been with them, & apologises for her behaviour. She forgets what ever she has studied and complains of headache often. Does she need some psychological counselling?

A:Your niece has been in a coeducational school all this time. It is only natural that she has friends among girls and boys. It is not a crime for girls and boys to talk to each other. Your sister should talk to her (and not leave the job to you) and explain how it is natural to be developing sexually and to find it exciting to be among boys and how they might also consider her attractive. I hope the school has given the necessary sex education to all the students. If that has not been done, the family will have to take on that job. If the school does not have enough extra-curricular activities, her mother and grandparents may try and provide activities in which she can participate, like classical dancing for example. Or some sports like swimming. If she gets a headache often, you should get her eyes tested. Also make sure she gets enough sleep and has a balanced diet. Sometimes children over-indulge in fried foods and cola drinks and their headaches could be one result. What you describe is an average 15 year olds response to life and situations. Please do not treat it as a disease. But if you have access to a friendly Counsellor, you should find out if your niece would like to meet her. She is rather young to be in PUC already. Lead her gently and firmly through her growing problems. Teach her to handle her freedom with discretion and responsibility. Her mother should give her trust and her unqualified affection.

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