Like most teenage girls, my daughter likes to go to the mall, movies and hang out with friends often. I think that's great. Developing social skills and deep friendships is hugely important. I totally support that. "Mom, a few of us want to get together at the mall/movies/chapters/etc.... Could you drive me?" Now that - I don't totally support. I don't want her to be dependant on her father and I in regards to her social life. Sometimes it's just not convenient to drop everything and chauffeur her around town. The time has come... "Sweetie, I'm going to teach you how to access public transit. I think it's important for your development and independance". She wasn't overly thrilled. I couldn't understand why. I was offering her the key to her city. I know deep down inside she wants the key, just a little scared to accept it. So, here are a few tips I found helpful in my quest to ease her into the world of public transit. 1. Go online and get familiar with the bus routes & schedules 2. Ask her to bring along a friend (as Winnie the Pooh says "It's so much friendlier with two") 3. Plan to ride with her the first few times 4. For safety sake, plan trips during daylight hours and ensure she carries a cellphone I know she's planning a trip to the movies this weekend. We're going to put the wheels (on the bus) in motion. I'll let you know how it goes.