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Dear Bearby: First of 2022!
My mom has become convinced that I secretly have a relationship with some guy from school I barely even talk to, and now she won’t let me do anything. She keeps demanding to go through my phone and know where I am (and with who) at all times, and anytime I tell her that I’m not in a relationship she yells at me for lying to her. I don’t even know why she thinks I’m dating him?????
”Dear Hopeless Non-Romantic,
Overbearing parents can be really hard to handle. Although this is a challenging way to let you know, it sounds like your mom is trying her best to get closer to you. I advise you to try to talk to her about a different aspect of your personal life, like your friends or teachers. Letting her into your personal life in a different way might be able to halt her questions while helping you form a trusting connection.
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Dear Bearby: Second Semester Senior
I cannot get through a full day of school without leaving. I have not attended a full week of school since the second semester started. My grades are plummeting. Help!
Second Semester Senior
”Dear Second Semester Senior,
Even though you may have finished applying to your post-high school plans, your effort in school still counts! It wouldn’t be productive to begin the next period of your life with dropped grades and failed classes. Try to get through the most fun block day first- knowing I have a good outfit on or will see my school friends always motivates me to stay on campus. On Mondays, if you make it until lunch, treat yourself to a donut in the C-wing with the Donut Club. It’s also important to build productive habits like time management and determination for the rest of your life.
Dear Bearby: Unlucky and Un-in-Love
There’s a guy in my math class who keeps trying to talk to me, even outside school. I think he’s hitting on me, and my friends keep saying he seems like he is. How do I tell if he’s trying to be friendly or actually into me, and, if he does like me, how do I tell him I’m not interested?
From, Unlucky and Un-in-love
”Dear Unlucky and Un-in-love,
I would go with the flow! It’s always a safe assumption that he is just being friendly, and if you’re interested in a friendship, it could turn out well. However, if he is making you feel uncomfortable, you can use friendship-based words like “buddy” and “homie” while talking to him, so he gets the hint. If he doesn’t understand and confesses his feelings, you can politely tell him that you are only looking to be friends right now. If your connection is worth saving, he would probably love to be friends too.
Dear Bearby: Sad Gay
One of my friends has really homophobic friends. This really bothers me because I am gay. I don’t know how to tell them that their friendship with these people bothers me.
”Dear Sad Gay,
I would start by mentioning it to your friend privately, or maybe through text. Let them know that you’re feeling uncomfortable with it, and use “I” statements, like “I feel hurt when…”. Keep the conversation to how you feel, not an ultimatum. It’s more important to get your thoughts across than lead with anger and frustration. If they are a true ally, they will hear you out and hopefully show their respect for your identity by changing their behavior.
Dear Bearby: Not-So-Joking Girlfriend
Every time I’m on a Facetime with my friend, she asks to add my boyfriend and I think it’s because she likes him. She sometimes treats our relationship like a joke 🙁
It’s highly possible that she’s excited for this new development in your life and wants to be a part of it because she feels like she’s drifting from you as you grow closer with your boyfriend. I would give your friend the benefit of the doubt and have an honest conversation with her. Think back to any other partners you’ve had —has she treated them the same? If you’re worried about your relationship not being taken seriously, try spending time with your boyfriend alone to strengthen your bond. Whether or not your friend is trying to be malicious, it’s always helpful to talk about it and set your boundaries.