DEAR CHRISTINE – Mum, gran don’t trust me
I am a young girl who recently turned 18, and I am having some problems. My mother and grandmother both think I’m too young to talk to boys. They keep telling me I should study my schoolwork, which I do reasonably well.
Not long ago I met this boy.
We have been together for about five months.
He makes me happy and I really like him.
I am not allowed to visit his home, as my parents don’t really know him. They say if I visit him, I’ll be pregnant in a few months, and this is what happens to us young girls.
We have had sex once during the relationship, but he does not force me to do anything I don’t want to.
My grandmother hates me to go anywhere. I have never even stayed over at a friend’s house or been allowed to go to town on my own.
Both she and my mother always make my brother or one of my cousins go with me.
My friend’s grandmother and mother really like me. They often invite me over for the day or weekend; for a spa treatment or to family events, but I always have to find an excuse because my mother does not give me permission to go.
My friend tells me that at 18 years old I should “get out and enjoy my youth”.
Christine, I really like him and I know he likes me too. He is always there for me, keeps me motivated and helps me build my self-esteem.
I have done nothing in the past for my family not to trust me.
Sometimes I tell them that I am going out with, or over by, my brother’s girlfriend so I can spend time with my friend, but they do not know.
I really like him and I do not want to lose him.
I need some advice on what to do.
– 18 and Trapped
Dear 18 and Trapped,
I understand your desire to spend time with your friend, and while I think that your mother and grandmother are being hard on you by not allowing you some measure of freedom, I also see their concern for your welfare.
Maybe they are shielding you from some of the mistakes they have made.
I take it you are still at school and maybe they just want you to concentrate on your studies.
There are some parents who would never allow their young daughter to “bring home a boyfriend” before she finishes school.
I believe your parents have (non-verbally) laid down this rule.
Telling lies so you can see your friend is deceitful. If your mother finds out, I’m sure she’ll be very disappointed.
Try finding “the right time” to talk to your mother. Tell her you’d like her to meet your friend. You’ve said you’ve already had intercourse once with this boy. That was not the wisest thing to do.
You must convince your mother that you’re not looking to get intimate with this young man, but that you’ll feel happier if she meets him.
If her answer is still no, I cannot advise you to go against your mother’s wishes. You’ll just have to live by the rules – as harsh as they may seem.
If your friend truly loves and cares for you, he’ll still be around when the “curfew” is lifted – which may be after you’ve completed your secondary education.