I’m 15 with my first boyfriend and I don’t know how to tell my parents. Oh yeah, did I tell you I have 7 brothers?! I want to be totally honest with them, but I don’t want to have to go through the drama that comes with it. What should I do?!
I totally understand your concern. You want to be a good daughter, but at the same time you don’t want to be grounded for life.
I’m going to assume your parents and 90,000 brothers are somewhat strict and overprotective. My parents are too, so I can definitely commiserate. And sometimes it can be even harder dealing with the men in the family.
Tricia’s Dad once decided to clean his guns when she had guy friends over, like straight out of a country song. As they are walking through the house, they run into her dad who is *chick-chick-ing* his rifle. In a completely casual tone he says,
Oh hey guys! Just doing some cleaning. What’s going on?
Totally embarrassing, right?
It can be frustrating because while your parents are strict, some kids parents are not, so they don’t understand what you are going through. Their parents think it’s adorable they have a boyfriend. They don’t pull out weapons, they pull out baby books to start scrapbooking “Baby’s First Boyfriend!”
But every parent is just trying to do the right thing. You’ve got to look at it from their perspective. They’ve gotten you this far, and they don’t want you messing up your future by spending too much time with some loser. Parents just want reassurance (and good grades, good jobs, etc.) As my mom always says (in an extremely concerned tone), Reassure us.
Parents don’t want to have to worry about you more than they already do. Which is a lot. And it’s better to be honest with your parents than sneak behind their backs. As long as they feel like they can trust you and your dating judgment, things may be a little less tense.
Plus it’s not like teen dating is such a ridiculous idea.
TONIGHT on the 10′ o clock news. Teen Dating. It’s a dangerous trend sweeping the nation. Is your child showing interest in the opposite sex? We’ll show you the warning signs TONIGHT.
So here’s the plan:
1. Tell your parents you have a boyfriend.
2. Acknowledge their concerns and reassure the crap out of them.
3. Suck up.
4. Tell your boyfriend how to suck up to them.
Here’s a sample script (Feel free to improv and add in actual factual information):
Hey, Mom and Dad! God, you guys are looking young today! Have you lost weight?
Anyway, I have a boyfriend. I know, I know, you might be worried because you are really good parents, but there is no need to worry because it is not serious. I am a smart girl (pull out great report card and raise eyebrows) and I’m not going to do anything stupid like girls on MTV.
I’m not going to lose my mind or spend all my time with my boyfriend or start getting bad grades. (Point again to report card.) You raised me better than that! (Optional high five to your mom, cheesy wink to your Dad).
He’s a really nice boy with upstanding morals. He doesn’t do drugs, he just sells them. (Insert laughter to show you’re kidding.) He wants to be an engineer and I’m pretty sure he’s the heir to some foreign throne. (Blah blah blah, insert other stuff parents want to hear.) Don’t worry you’ll get to meet him as soon as he’s back from volunteering in Chile.
Well, I have to go mow the lawn now, so I’ll see you guys at dinner. But don’t worry, I’m making it. (Optional wink and point)
Then get on the phone and coach your boyfriend on how to deal with your parents. You don’t have to scare the crap out of him, but just make sure he has great manners, especially around your parents. I had a mother tell me she had never met her daughter’s boyfriend because when he picks her up he just honks.
EXCUSE ME?! Is he your boyfriend or head of the soccer carpool?
Make sure your boyfriend always comes to the window, I mean door when he picks you up, and make sure he greets your parents. No one wants their daughter dating a rude Shady Brady.
I have to commend my high school guy friends. They always had great manners around my parents, and thusly my parents were happy to have them over. Sometimes I would even come home and find them chatting it up with my dad in the garage. Yes, you heard right, they would hang out with my parents when I wasn’t even home.
Now that’s what I call quality sucking up.
So reassure them and stay a responsible young adult.
And most importantly, suck up.
Keep us posted!
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