Question from Vivian
My dad has been giving me stuff for hugging guys I know. It is mainly, “Oh, Viv has a crush again” and “no boyfriends until you are 25.” It is all jokes but it is super irritating and annoying and I hate it.
How can I make this stop? Thanks Weezy! 🙂
Have a private convo with your dad and say, “I love how we can tease each other about almost everything. But the one thing I wish you would not tease me about right now is guys. Because when you do it, my little brothers chime in and I just, seriously, can not handle that. It’s too personal. Do you understand, Dad?”
He needs to hear it from you this way. He is just adjusting to this next stage in your development (which, P.S., terrifies him) with what is probably his usual dose of humor, because that’s a big piece of how he connects with you. If humor is really not working on this front, he needs to know so that he can adjust accordingly. He will understand.
And honestly, you do want to build a more serious foundation upon which you can communicate with your dad about boys. He’s got intel. He used to be one.
(The School of Life video)
• • •
Question from Lily
My sister and I fight all the time. We got in a huge fight and now we won’t talk to each other. I don’t want to be the soft one that apologized. That’s just what my sister and I do. If you apologize you’re the weak one. What should I do?
That may be the way you and your sister believe it to be, but out in the real world, it is the strongest person who has the courage to apologize. If you can learn that now while navigating the dangerous waters of sibling rivalry, you will be better equipped to create and nourish healthy relationships throughout your life.
Walk up to her right now and say: “Hey, I am sorry.” Do not attach a disclaimer to your apology. Do not say: I am sorry, but you really ticked me off. Simply say: I am sorry.
When two people fight to be right, both are WRONG. Go apologize now and have an amazing Sunday together.
• • •
Question from Monica
Hey, Weezy! I really want to get closer to my mom but sometimes it feels a little impossible. I want to be able to tell her what goes on in my life. I feel like I’ve gotten a little closer with her during the COVID-19 pandemic. I’ve told her about some friendship stuff but not all.
Sometimes she’ll judge my friends and me about what I tell her. She says I don’t trust her but … Ugh it’s hard to explain.
We haven’t really fought in more than a month, which is a record. I’ve been starting to tell her stuff little by little but she still kinda judges. Thanks, Weezy!! 🙂 <3
In a moment when things are calm and you have something you would like to share, say, “Mom, I want to tell you something but could you please try not to judge because that will make it easier for me to talk.” Saying this will help set parameters within which you will be more comfortable sharing with your mom.
Most moms really want to hear what their kid is thinking and feeling and they may not always realize that when they react, it can come across as judgment.
In other words, when you speak to your mom about your personal life, she is actually living it with you. That’s how much she loves you and cares about you. So when she hears about something that rubs her the wrong way, what you perceive as judgment could be her reacting like a momma bear feeling desperate to keep you safe.
Tell her that you want to hear her thoughts but you do not want to experience them as disapproval unless you are doing something that is truly harmful. I think she will hear this and get this, and I hope that the new guidelines will draw you two closer together.
• • •
Got a question for Weezy? Email her at email@example.com 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 co-hosts the podcast Media Path with Fritz Coleman, 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.