INTRODUCING MY SIGNIFICANT OTHER TO MY FRIENDS N COWORKERS
Dear Willie D:
I am dating a pastor and in my opinion, we love each other. The holidays are here and we are about to have our first outward appearance. Our families know that we are dating and are planning on getting married in October 2014. Since this is our first outward appearance, I just need to know how do I introduce him to my friends and coworkers?
At this time, we've only announced to our families our desire to be engaged and then married. We introduced ourselves over the Thanksgiving holiday to our family as, “This is the love of my life.” Saturday is our first introduction to outside people. What are your thoughts on how I should introduce him to my coworkers?
Tell them, “This is the love of my life” and keep it moving.
Dear Willie D:
I have three sons; my oldest is 14. Since he hit puberty his common sense has escaped his head. I tell him to clean his room, wash his laundry, or do his homework, and two weeks later this boy has not touched a thing. I remind him, and even find myself yelling all the time.
Then I find that he is still wearing nasty socks to school. If I do everything for him I am afraid he will not become self-sufficient, and depend on his someday-wife to do everything for him.
His favorite excuse is, “Oh, I forgot.” I would love to be able to discipline him like my parents did me, but I would find myself in trouble if I did. I have put him on restriction, taken his privileges away, and lectured him. How would you suggest I motivate him?
First evaluate how you're disciplining your son. You scold him and take away privileges, but are you firm, fair and consistent? I'm not a big fan of spankings, but I'm not taking it off the table. Unfortunately, spanking is illegal in some states.
Although it's legal where I live [Texas] even if it wasn't, if I thought spanking my child was the best way to discipline my son or daughter so that he or she didn't end up disrespectful, a bum, in prison, or dead, I wouldn't give a damn what the law says.
The police, judges and prosecutors don't feed our children when they're hungry, buy clothes, provide shelter, teach life lessons and worry about them 365 days a year; parents do that. What's ironic is that if you don't figure out a way to effectively discipline your son, the police, judges, and prosecutors will.
I think getting him to do his homework and chores are doable if you remain resolute. On the other hand, he's a teenager attending school in funky socks. If he's 14 and don't care about his hygiene, it's going to be hard to stop that.
More Ask Willie D on the next page.
DAD ACTS LIKE A DRILL SERGEANT
Dear Willie D:
My dad used to be a soldier in the military so he has a zero-tolerance mentality. If he enters my room and see my shoes next to the bed instead of tucked away out of view he will make me do 20 pushups. I can only watch TV five hours a week and I'm not allowed to use the computer unless it's school-related. If I wear a collared shirt I have to tuck it in. I'm 17 years old and I can't have a girl in the house unsupervised.
I hate when he's home because I can't be myself like a normal kid. When he's home the house is quiet and depressing. My mom is the complete opposite of my dad. She jokes around with me and we laugh a lot. But as soon as my dad walks through the door, it's back to boot camp. Anytime I come home late from anything I get grounded automatically for two weeks.
I'm sick of it. When I leave for college it will be a long time before he ever sees my face again. Why does he treat his own kid that way?
Don't take it too personal. Being a soldier is very stressful and hard. It shapes you to be meticulous and disciplined in every aspect of life. Your dad is probably a great guy; he just wants the best for you.
Sometimes parents love their children so much the only way they know how to express it is to be super-strict so that their children don't fall into the traps of drugs, laziness, running with the wrong crowd and being irresponsible.
You've survived under your dad's rules for 17 years. You only have a few more months to go and you're done. In the meantime just talk to your dad and tell him how you feel. There are all kinds of dads out there. Lenient dads are the coolest, but oftentimes it's their kids who become menaces to society.
DID I SEVER TIES THE RIGHT WAY?
Dear Willie D:
At the beginning of this year I ran into a male friend whom I haven't seen since high-school graduation. After bringing one another up to speed on our lives he admitted that he had "physical” feelings for me. I'll admit that initially I thought about going through with it, but my heart got the best of me. I revealed my true feelings about wanting a relationship with him, but he stated he wasn't interested due to needing his time to raise his daughter.
I honestly understood that, but didn't understand why he still wanted to pursue me physically. Since I decided I would no longer settle for less [in any area of my life] anymore, I sent him a text message stating that all bets were off, and that I deserve better; no relationship, no physical intimacy.
Of course he was pissed. We haven't been on speaking terms since. I truly feel like I made the right decision, but morally speaking, did I do something wrong?
Your friend wants a physical relationship, and you want an intimate one. If anybody did something wrong, it's him for kicking and screaming like a baby for not getting his way, and trying to get you to do something you don't want to do. You have a right to not settle for what doesn't make you happy.