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Sunday, December 9 , 2018, 2:15 pm | Fair 67º

 
 
 
 
Teenagers

Louise Palanker: Mother-Daughter Talks, Obsessive Suitor, ‘Interest’ from a Player

Question from Amber

Well, I have a boyfriend. He wants me to tell my parents about us, but my parents are strict on me with dating. My mom thinks I will end up just like her, getting pregnant in high school.

I really want to tell my parents but I don’t know how? I never had that mother-and-daughter relationship. I don’t like hiding things from her because she becomes nosy on my things or takes my phone away and starts asking questions. Also I want her to trust me.

Weezy

It sounds like you know what your mother’s concern is but you don’t fully understand it. To bottom line this, your mother is terrified that you will fall deeply in love with a boy, lose yourself and become pregnant. It happened to her, and she fears that she is unable to prevent it from happening to you.

If you are not permitted to date, then you should not date. Keeping secrets is exhausting and it trains you to become a lifelong liar. Your brain is busy forming circuitry right now, and if your thoughts become layers of lies to hide lies to hide lies then you are learning to be a deceptive person.

Getting away with a lie creates a high, and you tend to chase it. Have you heard the saying, “She’ll lie when the truth will do?” This means the person is so addicted to lying that a lie has become her first choice. People like this tend to have shallow, temporary relationships.

Yes, I am painting a gloomy outlook, but I firmly believe that you should establish patterns of integrity that will govern your decision making. Yes, all teenagers create a line of demarcation between themselves and their parents, which helps them define who they are. These lines will include a few lies. But a secret boyfriend? Don’t go there.

Let’s circle back to your mother’s fear that you will model her mistakes. In many ways you are already fitting a familiar pattern for you mom. She may not have had a close and communicative relationship with her mother, which may have led to her seeking love and acceptance from a boy and becoming pregnant at a young age.

Lacking the conversation tools needed to speak with you openly about sensitive subjects, she may feel that her only recourse at this point is to be strict and tough. But as you grow a little older you become increasingly capable of initiating a conversation, which could help you and your mother better understand each other.

At the right moment, ask her to tell you more about her history with boys and dating. It can begin with one question: “Tell me about when you met my father.” From there, go on to let her know that she has done a wonderful job instilling in you a solid respect for yourself, which will prevent you from following a similar path. Teach her to trust you by sharing with her voluntarily. Show her who you are.

As the relationship deepens between you and your mother, you can let her know that you like a boy and then ask her for advice. Show her that you care about what she thinks and that her opinion is valuable to you. This will increase your trust in each other and with that will come better decisions and more freedom.

(Teen Kids News video)

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Question from Katie

I was introduced to a guy by a cousin of mine; my cousin felt we might hit it off well as we have a lot of similar hobbies and interests. We had a few lighthearted conversations on the phone and then he asked me out on a date. I told him that I am too focused on my studies to date and that I’m not looking for a boyfriend. Well, he sort of freaked out and kept calling me back and angrily saying that he is not interested in being just friends.

He said he was willing to do whatever he had to to “win my heart”... Well, at that point, I told him that in all honesty, he was starting to sound a little obsessive and that it made me feel really uneasy, and I suggested that he may be try pursuing a different girl, because I was not interested in getting involved with anyone!

I know many people this age feel differently about this, but I have an older sister who ONLY focused on having a boyfriend ALL the time ... and NOW she is a single mom with four kids, and will barely turn 22 years old next month!

I decided I would much rather finish school, go on to college and maybe make a much better life for myself! I definitely hope to have a great boyfriend someday and ideally get married, etc., but it’s not something I’m strongly trying to get RIGHT NOW in my life. I feel I am still discovering who “I” am, and I have lots of friends and am OK with not having a “special someone” in my day-to-day.

He started calling me every day, a few times a day, and the messages said “please just call me back,” “I really need to talk to you,” “why won’t you find or make some time for me?” “you didn’t seem like such a cold-hearted person before so why aren’t you calling me back,” etc. etc.

My cousin even called me to ask what’s going on, because the guy was calling and asking if they’d seen or heard from me. To me, his reactions don’t seem appropriate for the short time I’ve known him, and I am not so open to trying to even be his friend any further. He’s really starting to weird me out.

My main question is: What would be the most honest, kind, compassionate and inoffensive way to get him to look elsewhere for a girlfriend? I don’t want to hurt his feelings intentionally, but he seems overly sensitive and also somewhat unstable (emotionally), and I feel like I have to walk on eggshells in dealing with him.

Weezy

You possess extraordinarily astute instincts. You understand yourself. You read the situation. You have behaved admirably. There is not a lot more required of you. Most of the work is done. You only need to proudly own your choice and your assessment of what is happening.

You don’t want to grow up too soon. You want to have an excellent career and put your education and social development ahead of sex and babies. You are getting an uncomfortable vibe from this guy. Even if you were ready for a boyfriend, he would need to be someone with more autonomy and self esteem. So just NO on this guy.

If he contacts you again, be more direct and final. Say, “We are in two different places. I am not interested in a relationship with you. I wish you the best.” Then just stop returning his calls. Tell your cousin and everyone else who knows him and asks about this that he was not right for you. You can add that he helped you understand that a relationship requires a lot of care and attention and time, and that you really don’t have that to give to this guy right now. Ask them to respect your decision.

You are not obligated to date anyone. No matter who sets you up or how well it goes for whatever amount of time. At any moment you get to say, “I don’t think this is working,” and decline to continue seeing the person. Your only obligation is to be clear and kind. From what I have read you have been. Say a bit more. Make it final and then let this go with no guilt or doubt.

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Question from Ann

Sooo, I’ve never posted on here for advice before, but I’m really stuck. So, there’s this guy who is a hockey player for a popular team. He followed me on Snapchat and usually views my Snapchat stories shorty after they are posted. He initiated a conversation in Snapchat twice, but I couldn’t tell if they were snaps sent to more than one person or just me.

I got his number and we text every now and then, but only if I text first. He wanted to FaceTime one night and I told him “sure” but then he texted back and told me he couldn’t anymore and that it’d be awkward because his roommate returned. So I told him that maybe we can do it another time and he said “or I can take you out when I get back.” And he said “I will” when I told him to go for it.

Then we went a day without talking because I was hoping he’d message me first for once. Last night I texted him and he said he wished he had me as company and he still planned on taking me out when he got back from his trip. I’m just confused because his Snapchat Score goes up drastically every day, and when we do talk sometimes he will hang out in Snapchat and leave me hanging for a bit.

And it sucks because I can’t help but think that he’s telling me he wants to go out and all this sweet stuff while he’s telling other girls this. I really like him and I’m worried he’s talking the same way to other girls. I’m worried he won’t really take me out, even though he told me he would twice. And I’m tired of initiating the convo.

They say if a guy likes you he will text you first, too. I get he’s busy but even when he’s not he never texts. I’ve waited days and he never does. The most confusing part: whenever I text him first he keeps the convo going and he’s interesting. He asks me about last relationships and it’s awesome. So I know I’m not annoying him.

But he never texts me first so I don’t know if he legit likes me or not or if he’s a player. Thoughts and opinions please.

Weezy

He’s a player. He is talking to a lot of girls. He is probably trolling for hookups and very much enjoying being a single, popular hockey guy. I know this is not what you want to hear, but I would steer clear and protect your heart. A guy who wants to take you out on a date takes you out on a date. That guy is out there. Go find him.

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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 also hosts a weekly video podcast called Things I Found Online, and 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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