Friday, May 25 , 2018, 10:00 am | Mostly Cloudy 63º


Louise Palanker: Comfort Zones, Getting Short with Mom over Shorts, Dating Older Guys

Question from Kimberly

Weezy ... So I’ve been in retail since I was 16, and I’ve been working for three years and three months at my job. I really love it there because we all get a long and we have all worked together for a long time.

I went and had an interview with Macy’s yesterday as a beauty adviser. My passion is beauty. I love makeup and love doing it on people. I was super nervous. I met with one of the managers and then I met with another manager.

Gladly, she liked me and said I was a good fit for the position. I could tell she really liked my answers and personality. She told me that they will email me in two weeks.

My problem is that where I work now is very chill and not so strict an atmosphere. I feel like I should be growing professionally since my major is business, but I am so afraid to take a new and scary job.

The pay is really good at Macy’s as well, like $11 an hour and I make $8.35 now. I will also be a makeup artist and charge people for doing their makeup.

All that is exciting but I’m just really nervous. Because the girls there are super uptight and makeup on point and everything, just wow. I just don’t know ... I would miss everyone I work with at my current job. I couldn’t even sleep last night.

A part of me is hoping that I get an email saying I’m not a fit for this job because I’m scared to take a huge step ... I don’t know if I should encourage myself no matter what or just stay with what I have and go about my merry life. Should I send a follow up email when I am not even sure I want this job?


First, you always follow up an interview with a “Thank you for the opportunity.” ALWAYS.

Second, yes you do want to take on this next challenge. That is how you learn. You may work at Macy’s for a year or two, come to understand what it is all about, and THEN go back to working in a more relaxing setting, but that will be you making a choice based on experience rather than on fear.

ALWAYS take an opportunity to better your situation. We should all resist getting too comfortable. Comfort can turn quickly into bed sores. Go see what you are made of. Don’t let people intimidate you. If you are hired for this job, it will be because the experts who interviewed you KNOW that you can do this.

Inside we are all insecure. Make others feel comfortable. Do that with your co-workers and with your clients. Be a person who rises to a challenge and adds something positive to the world. Be a person who steps up and says, “I am going to figure out how to make myself comfortable OUTSIDE of my comfort zone.” That is how we widen our comfort zone and grow.

I love this video from Gregory Reading and inknowation. Watch the whole thing:

(Gregory Reading video)

                                                                 •        •        •

Question from Samantha

Weezy ... My mom is really annoying me. I’m 19 and in college, going to be a sophomore.

I went to the mall yesterday to buy shorts with my boyfriend, so when I go to the beach I could wear them. My mom on the other hand does not like the idea of me wearing shorts. I’m not even asking to wear them to the mall, but come on? To the beach ?! I’m going to change into swimming shorts any way.

She then said, “You just want your boyfriend to see your body.” I’m like, “What the heck? They are just shorts! I’m not returning them and I’m not a baby. Everyone wears shorts to the beach. Nothing is wrong with them.”

And she didn’t say anything, so now I’m so annoyed. Like I bought them, I’m not going to frame them, and I like them. So now I don’t know what to do without causing a big issue with her.


You are 19 years old. You can make your own fashion choices and use your own judgment. Sure, there is still the element of you living in her house and her paying your bills, etc. So you do need to be sensitive and respectful about this until you are fully supporting yourself. Tread carefully.

The comment that your mother made to you reveals more about her than it does about you. It’s natural that you will want to look cute for your boyfriend. It’s biologically programmed into your being that you would like him to appreciate your shape. Do not allow your mother’s judgment to make you feel ashamed. You are simply human.

When your mom alludes that wearing shorts indicates a character flaw, you need to hear that and let it roll right out to the curb. Don’t let her add to all of the confusing messages that females are already receiving regarding their sexual instincts.

She is probably frightened and she may believe that her words are protecting you, but rather than attacking the proud history of shorts she should be having an honest conversation with you about sex and safety and responsibility.

However, your mom is not going to change. It’s best to just accept that and file her shorts protest under a folder titled “Messed Up Things My Mother Says To Me.” Don’t argue with her. Don’t say things like “I’m not a baby.” Just say, “These are appropriate for people my age, Mom.” Then put them away and don’t wear them in her presence.

It’s possible that at some point in your mother’s youth, somebody made her feel ashamed of her feelings or some guy took advantage of her, or maybe a whole long list of things happened to her that scarred her and worry her about raising a daughter.

When things are calm you can say, “Mom, you’ve done a great job with me. You’ve instilled values and morals, and I know who I am. I need for you to trust me.”

Healthy conversations like that can lead to less drama the next time you purchase clothing. Very, very soon you will be on your own, buying your own clothes with your own money and this incident will fade into a memory.

Watch and take notes:

(From Toxic To Love video)

                                                                 •        •        •

Question from Tiffany

I’m a teenage girl just graduating an extended elementary school, and I’m going to a high school with the kids from my school and other schools.

There is this boy I like who is my age. I have already had two boyfriends, one for eight months and the other for 14 months. I’m not sure if I like him, but we both have so much in common: We both love soccer and basketball, and all other sports. We both play instruments, him drums, me saxophone.

We also are obsessed with our expensive head phones and we rap to Eminem and Macklemore together. I think I really like him but I’m not sure if it’s worth potentially ruining his current relationship over.

Also, I am excited to meet older and more mature boys at my new school. I really don’t know what to do ... Help?


To be very blunt, It is not your right to even consider “ruining this boy’s current relationship.” Your headline needed to read, I LIKE A GUY WHO HAS A GIRLFRIEND.

I understand that you started dating really young and that relationships may not yet seem all that sacred, but the older you grow the more serious they will become, and the more you will need to understand and respect their boundaries.

Until you know or hear otherwise, this guy is off the market. That means flirting has to be reined in. Believing that you have a connection with this kid, or with any boy that could potentially blow up a relationship, will adversely affect your friendships with other girls.

It sounds like you are very confident and eager when it comes to dating since you are excited about potentially going out with older guys. Just be very careful. Boys should be friends first.

The older a guy is, the more mature he may be expecting you to be within a romantic relationship. You are just barely out of middle school and you don’t want to be in too much of a hurry to grow up. Every human really needs her childhood. Use it on being a child.

Get to know lots of kids. Be friendly. It seems like you really are and that you have a lot of fun and enjoy life and that you are quite confident. All of this is fantastic.

But you are not the only person deciding whether you will date someone. You may like this kid a ton. But he has a 50 percent vote on whether you two will become a couple.

AND, he is not single! There is a third person who will be severely affected if he decides he would like to date you. As we paddle through life we make ripples. Always endeavor to make good ripples.

Go slow. You and this kid are growing up together. You appear to have a whole lot in common. If something is supposed to develop, let that happen very naturally.

                                                                 •        •        •

Got a question for Weezy? Email her at [email protected] and it may be answered in a subsequent column.

Louise Palanker is a co-founder of Premiere Radio Networks, the author of a semi-autobiographical coming-of-age novel called Journals, a comedian, a filmmaker (click here to view her documentary, Family Band: The Cowsills Story), a teacher and a mentor. She has a teen social network/IOS app and weekly video podcast called Journals Network, built around a philosophy of cyber kindness. She also teaches a free stand-up comedy class for teens at the Jewish Federation of Greater Santa Barbara​. Click here to read previous columns. The opinions expressed are her own.

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