Tuesday, September 24, 2019

A Letter to Harris on How To Treat a Girl

Dear Harris,

As you know, Grace just broke up with a boy that sort of broke her heart.. twice.  She didn't want to break up with him but his attitude required her to for her own self respect.  I"m super proud of how brave she was to do that!  While there are many lessons for Grace to learn, watching (and worrying and worrying some more) this story unfold has reminded me how very important it is for me and your Dad to teach you how to treat girls and women (and frankly, anyone).  I fear that we've thought that surely you would just pick it up from your Dad as he has always treated myself and your sister with respect and care.  However, I've come to realize that with teenage boys (and girls!) one really has to spell it out in very plain and simple terms so here it goes...

1.  Tell her she's beautiful, not hot, but beautiful.  There is a difference and most girls know it.

2.  Don't be self absorbed.  Ask about her, about her day, her dreams, her hopes.   Ask them if you can come see them do something they love- watch a game, a show, a favorite concert.  Show genuine interest.  If you aren't interested in who they are, don't date them.

3.  Go out of your way and make an effort.  If a girl asks you to come see a sunrise, go see it.  Those extra few hours of sleep aren't worth what you will be missing nor the message that you will be sending.

4.  If you discover, after a few dates or even a few months, that you just aren't that into her, tell her.  Tell her face to face and with care and respect.  Don't start ghosting her, coming up with excuses, and awkwardly avoiding her.  That's nothing but disrespectful and says way more about your character than hers.

5.  Always come to the door and say hello to her parents.  Texting her that you are in the driveway is lame.  Also, say goodbye to her parents when you leave their home and say thank you.

6.  No means no.  For anything.  Holding hands, kissing, the list goes on and on.  Don't assume anything.  And don't kiss and tell.

7.  Don't listen to your friends, most of them are totally clueless and have the wrong ideas about girls completely.  Also, don't allow them to speak ill or disrespectfully of any girl.

8.  Be a gentleman.  Hold the door, take her flowers, write her a note, and don't be crass in front of her.

9.  Do what you say you will do and show up when you say you will.

10.  If you do something stupid (and you will), apologize for it.  A genuine apology can heal many wounds but being too proud to own up to a mistake can destroy a relationship.

11.  When your relationship ends, be respectful for a decent amount of time afterwards,  don't start galavanting around with the next girl immediately.  That's hurtful and mean.

Be prepared that when the time comes, I'm going to remind you and talk to you about all of these things.  It's not a one and done sort of venture because someday your relationship will be forever (we hope!) and it's so important for you both to get it right so you might as well start practicing now.  I can't tell you how many people have said over the past few weeks how stupid 17 year old boys are and can be.  I believe that there is something to that, but I don't think it has to be that way.  Be the exception, not an excuse.

I love you always,


Thursday, September 5, 2019

First (and Last for One) Day of School

You guys, I"m feeling all the feelings.  Our children are both in high school and one of them is a senior.  It's so cliche but I simply do not know where the time went.  (Also, how am I this old????)

This is the first time that both children have been in the same school in 7 years and it makes me super happy.  Harris had orientation starting on Tuesday, and they both attended yesterday for a school wide book day (summer reading themed day) but today was the first day of classes.

And... Grace went to school with a fever so she says she looks poor in these photos.  However, I still think she looks beautiful!

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