My daughter comes out of the house in ridiculous outfits
My eighth grade daughter is very body conscious, like many young women her age (and any age for that matter). I try to be as supportive as possible and tell her that she is beautiful inside and out. However, there are days when she leaves the house in outfits that fit terribly or worse, ridiculous. But she loves them, so I bite my tongue. But it kills me! What should I do?
Dear tongue tied,
Keep biting, baby! What looked good to you in eighth grade and what looks good to you is likely to be completely different. Your parents probably thought what you were wearing was just as ridiculous.
Twenty years from now, when she looks at pictures of herself from that time, she may laugh at how silly she looks, or she may think she looks pretty fabulous. But what she won’t do is look back and think, my God my mom was SO critical and critical! And that’s what you want.
Of course, if you bite your tongue right through, you will have pierced it and then you can horrify your daughter even more by putting a stud in it!
Many of my friends are getting marriedâ¦ good for them! First comes love, then comes marriage, then comesâ¦ guess what? Once again, good for them! But if I’m going to hear another couple talking about how they’re trying to have a baby, I’m going to lose them.
No one wants to know how hard you are having sex because you are trying to conceive which is basically what you are telling me. Ad nausea. Keep it for someone who cares, I say. How can I try to get out of these conversations without gagging their yum?
Fall on deaf ears
Well I hate to say that, but you might be a little screwed up. I’ll, without any evidence, attribute this to people who live their entire lives on social media, assuming everyone wants to know everything about them.
Flash info: they don’t. Record your basal body temperature details for your best friend. The fault is not with you but with the people who talk about their adventures in design, without regard for their audience.
Read the room, folks! Besides the fact that no one wants to hear about your sex life, you never know what other people may be going through. Maybe you are talking to someone who is infertile, has had a miscarriage, or does not want children.
Anyway, I think the only polite thing to do is say “Excuse me, my phone is ringing, I have to take it” and walk out of the conversation. If you have the nerve, you might say, “I’m not in a long-term relationship, I don’t know if I can have kids, and I haven’t had sex since Obama was president, so while I wish you well on your design journey, maybe it would be best to tell other people about itâ¦ Thank you! And those Chicago Sky ?! But the only place most of us say this stuff is in the shower.
As the youngest of four siblings, I have often benefited from older, more established parents who sometimes provided me with a meal or something else that I needed to help me. Now that I’m an adult (and more) I’m fortunate enough to be in a position where I can collect the check if I’m with nieces, nephews, or younger people. I think that’s what seniors should be doing.
Recently my son – in his early days – went out with a cousin and her husband – much older, great jobs (well paying), no kids – for a meal in the (expensive) town where they all live. I was delighted that the cousins ââwere hanging out together! I was a little less thrilled when I found out that they shared the bill, especially since the older cousin had chosen the place and it tasted very good.
I feel mean but, really? Couldn’t my nephew take his little cousin out and give him a good meal? (Last time I was there I – luckily! – treated them all with a very expensive afternoon of drinks and dinner). If one of my kids did that, I’d be done with it. Now I look both juicy and small!
If you’re feeling smart and petty, you’ve come to the right place! One of my favorite things in life is to be judge and mean. My dogs are called Judgy and Petty. There should be a board game called “Judgy and petty”. I would definitely be the defending champion. But as mature humans, we have to fight our worst instincts. In this case, however, I am with you. Welcome Judgy and Petty!
Nevertheless, it must be said that in the grand scheme of things, the division of control is not the same as, say, the division of atoms. No one will be irradiated because they will have to pay their fair share. And, your son could have looked at the prices ahead of time and requested a change of venue (I know, what 22 year old does that?).
Of course, it would be nice if the older, more established cousin gave the younger, newbie cousin a meal, expensive or otherwise. It’s the gracious thing to do, let alone pay forward and carry on a centuries-old tradition. But, the family being what it is, it is necessary to accept the great qualities of each one as well as the most tight-lipped ones.
I like to see it as a collection of information. You now have another piece of information about this couple. Information may not be too flattering. Despite the temptation to simmer and rant, it’s probably best to remember what you love about this nephew, be grateful to cousins ââwho love each other, and blame it on your brother is not as good a parent as you are! And then get into Tae Kwon Do.
By the way, I like you to end your note with “if any of my kids did that, I’d be done with it.” As if we had control over our adult children. It is a good one. Thanks for the laugh!
Dear Gabby appears in the roundtable every Friday. Yes, Gabby is an advice columnist – but not just any advice columnist. Because that would be boring! Gabby combines wisdom with the mind. And a pinch of snark. She is by no means a qualified therapist, but she has seen and loved a lot in her time. Her goal is to make you think while she makes you laugh. Gabby welcomes all questions and requests and is only too happy to hear your opinion, no matter how different it may be from hers. Write to Gabby at [email protected]