Crystal Lai, 16, Po Leung Kuk Ma Kam Ming College
I think 19 is a suitable age for a first date. You’re considered an adult at 18, but I feel like some people are still immature when they have just turned 18. I think that, after being an adult for a year, a person might become more mature, and more able to decide what should and should not be done on a first date. That would make going on a date safer for me. I would also, because I’ve been an adult for a year, not be as likely to be cheated on by my boyfriend. Hopefully!
Janet Chan, 13, Po Leung Kuk Lee Shing Pik College
I think a person should be at least 17-years-old. That’s an age where you can be mature enough to express your feelings and deal with the consequences if you break up with them. At that age, you are still a secondary school student, but I believe secondary school life becomes more meaningful when you have a boyfriend or a girlfriend. Many people think being in a relationship will affect our grades, but I don’t agree with them. I think being part of a couple means you have motivation to do well together. You can study together, and learn from each other.
Talking points: should the requirements be different for men and women applying to join the police force?
Amy Ling Hiu-Man, 16, Po Leung Kuk Wu Chung College
As long as you are over 16, I think it is fine to begin dating. This is an age when a person begins to enter adulthood, even as they are still studying. As senior students at secondary school, they are a little more mature than younger students when handling problems. A lot of people say your grades will suffer if you date someone, but I think they would improve, because you would have someone by your side supporting you and cheering you on through exams. Going on dates at the weekends would help you relax, and would lower your stress levels – and it would make for an unforgettable secondary school experience.
Lam Chi-tung, 14, Christian Alliance Cheng Wing Gee College
In my opinion, we should be 18 or older before you go on your first date. This is because, at that age, you’re old enough to make your own decisions. However, it really does depend on your maturity level. If you are immature, then you might not be able to deal with some of the issues that you would face being part of a couple. But if you’re mature enough, and you won’t let everything else in your life slip because of one relationship, then you should be allowed to let a friendship become something more.
Asher Lau Ka-yan, 14, Tin Shui Wai Methodist College
Every teenager wants to date – I sometimes think about what it will be like to date, but I don’t think I’m ready for it yet. The best age to start dating would be 18. I won’t have to go to school, so I wouldn’t have to worry about studying. Dating when you’re still at school means you’re likely to be distracted by them when you think about them. You’ll not be able to treat them the way you want to, either, because you’ll be studying. I would want to treat my girlfriend to the cinema, to nice meals out, and to go on adventures. I would want to make a good impression on my first date, so I’ve got to be ready for it!
Michael Kwok Pui-hin, 17, Law Ting Pong Secondary School
I don’t think there should be an age restriction on when you can or can’t date. Being able to express your feelings only to someone is a good thing, because you will learn new things about yourself when you are in a relationship. The important thing is to know when to study and when to date. Having good time management helps, as then you will be able to have success both at school and in love.
Arella Ng, 13, Christian Alliance International School
I believe the perfect age to have your first date is after you’ve graduated university. I think it’s useless to date when you are studying, because after a first date, things can only go two ways. You either don’t see them again, or you begin dating them. If you begin to date them, then you have to divide your concentration between your studies and your relationship. If a break up happens, then you will be sad, and your grades might get even worse. Once you graduate from a university, that’s it – your life as a student is done. Most people are emotionally mature by that age, too, and you’ll be able to better cope with something as stressful and as time-consuming as dating.
Eva Tse Yi-Nga, 14, Daughters of Mary Help of Christians Siu Ming Catholic Secondary School
I think 18 years old is the ideal time to have your first date. There are two reasons for my thinking. The first is that when you are 18, you are an adult and you’re emotionally mature. You’ll be able to think about how your actions can affect someone else, and you will hopefully not hurt someone because of something you do or say. The second reason is because of money. As an 18-year-old, I would be able to devote lots of time to working, to earn money. That means I would be able to go on nicer first (and second and third) dates.
Penny Ng Wing-yu, 15, Ma On Shan Tsung Tsin Secondary School
I think you need to be older than 20. I think being mature is very important when it comes to relationships. Think about how immature a person is when they are young – do you really want to be dating someone like that? When you are young, you don’t know how to deal with your emotions, and you might do or say something you don’t mean. As a result you might end up breaking up anyway. I think after you have got into university, you are probably mature enough to date and to love.
Helen Liu, 16, Fung Kai Liu Man Shek Tong Secondary School
There are lots of differing opinions about how old you should be when you first begin dating, but I think that you should be 18 or older. I’m a student and I think as a student the most important thing in your life is to do well in your studies. I think I already don’t do that well in my studies, so I can’t imagine what it would be like to date on top of trying to keep my grades high. Dating would just distract me from that. I also think that the people you meet after you are 18 are more mature. That’s why I think people should only date after this age.
In our next Talking Points, we’ll discuss:
Should all films be required to include actors of different ethnic backgrounds?
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