My parents drive her away

I am 14 years old, and the only boy in my family. Whenever a girl tries to make friends with me, my parents drive her away by being rude and impolite to her. My sisters are even worse. I am fed up!

Dear Nikhil,

You sound so frustrated and embarrassed that your parents treat any girl who comes to meet you with suspicion and are rude and impolite to her.

The best way to find out why they do this is to have a frank talk with them. Perhaps they are worried that you will lose focus on studies? Or that you are breaking family and social traditions? Or is it something else? Also, be clear about your own intentions: Are girls just ‘friends’ for you, or do you want a ‘girlfriend’?

Explain to your family members that it embarrasses you when they are rude to a guest, and that it doesn’t make them look good either. Ask them what makes them uncomfortable when a girl tries to make friends with you. Acknowledge and accept what they say with an open mind. At present, if they feel that you don’t need a girlfriend, respect it. Ask if they are fine with a mixed group of friends coming home. It will help your family to gradually become comfortable with both girls and boys as your friends. Once they know your group, they may not object to ‘girl’ friends from your group coming over sometimes. As for having girlfriends, there’s plenty of time for that later!

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Nasreen Hashambhoy
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Nasreen Hashambhoy

Nasreen Hashambhoy is a Counsellor, Life Coach and a Facilitator of training programmes for schools and corporates. Through a combination of coaching, counselling and facilitation techniques based on cognitive science and positive psychology, she helps clients achieve their true potential. She is the author of the series Values In Action published by Better Yourself Books.