TeenDiariesOnline.com is a site dedicated to everything for the teenage girl. From music, fashion, and advice, it’s no wonder that we found this site to be a girl’s true sanctuary. Within the site there is an anonymous advice column called Dear Nicole. It’s a place where you can reach out for a bit of advice or a little direction. We all know life has its little (or maybe huge) complications. That is why we here at BFF decided to team up with TD to present you with, “Dear Nicole”:
I’ve been having some problems with my mom. I’m not in any of the hobbies I want to be in. A while back, I asked if I could be in cheerleading. My dad tried to convince my mom to let me be in it. The answer was “yes”! Then my principal decided not to have a cheerleading squad for a while. Recently my school announced that cheerleading was back on. I got the forms that I needed and asked my mom again. Her answer was “NO”!!! The sad part is all of my friends are going to be in cheerleading. I just want my mom to treat me like a teen that needs adventure.
A:I’m sorry to hear you don’t feel like you’ve been able to really live out your teen life in an adventurous way. Problems with parents can be tough and very tricky, especially when you still reside under their roof. I suggest you start with a serious talk with your mom. Let your dad know what you plan on doing and see if he can help in any way. Set the mood, meaning make sure your mom is in the mood to talk and let her know what she is in for. Make a meal for her or just make sure she is comfortable, and prepare to have a deep discussion. Now, there are some rules when trying to get someone to really hear you when you speak. The first is to avoid anything that may offend them or put them on the defensive. A way to do that is by using I statements not You statements. For example, “I really want to be more involved in school and it really disappoints me when I have to pass on great opportunities” instead of “You never allow me to be involved at school and you’re really making me upset.”
Another thing to remember is that conversation is a two way street. Try your best to avoid talking over each other. Let her finish her points no matter how difficult they are to hear. If she interrupts you, let her speak and then finish your point. Your goal is for her to HEAR you not for you just to get your point across. Lastly, be solution focused and prepared. If you want to participate in extracurricular activities, then you should have a plan on how you are going to do so. If it’s safety that your mom is concerned about, talk to your admin and provide her with a list of staff that supervise the activities. And the fact is, grades are not the only criteria colleges and universities look at when considering applicants. They want to see a well-rounded person and that includes participation in extra activities. Be prepared to have to divide your conversation in to parts. Sometimes parents need a moment to think about everything. If you see your mom is getting agitated or is no longer listening, back off and revisit the conversation another day. Hope this helps.