Who is Miss Abigail?

Abigail Grotke
Silver Spring, MD
email: missabigail at missabigail dot com
twitter: @DearMissAbigail

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Miss Abigail has a collection of over 1,000 classic advice books, spanning from 1822 to 1978 and covering a variety of topics, from love and romance to etiquette and charm. The collection sparked the idea for this site, then a book, Miss Abigail's Guide to Dating, Mating, and Marriage, which has inspired an Off-Broadway production of the same name!

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Posts Tagged ‘friendship’

Is Andy Interested In Me? or, Remembering Names

Thursday, September 2nd, 2010

oh, yes, you can, if you want toQ Dear Miss Abigail:

Is Andy interested in me?

Signed,
Evelyn

A Dear Evelyn:

I’d like to take this opportunity to clarify something for you and quite a few others who have recently asked me such questions as “Will I marry John Rachal?” and “Will I go out with Jonathan Bonin?” and “Am I wasting my time with the relationship I have at the moment?” Well, here it is ~ the one, the only, the OFFICIAL STATEMENT:

Miss Abigail’s Time Warp Advice is in no way whatsoever connected to the Psychic Hotline.

Whew. Now that we are all clear on that, you will understand why I cannot answer your question. So instead, I will use this space to share some totally irrelevant advice regarding the fine art of remembering names. I wonder, Emily, are you also troubled with this problem?

1961: Remembering Names

There is one thing that makes a hit with everybody. That is, remembering names. You may have heard people bragging ~ though they should have been apologizing for it instead of bragging about it ~ ‘I always remember faces, but I can’t seem to remember names.’

Oh, yes, you can, if you want to, and are willing to try hard enough. The late president Franklin D. Roosevelt was an outstanding example of someone who could call people by their first names after not having seen them for a long time. Nothing pleases a person quite so much as having his name remembered.

How can you gain this ability to make friends by remembering names? There are certain tricks and ways for developing this, but you can develop ways of your own. If you are determined to do it and willing to make the effort ~ and it does involve considerable effort ~ the battle is half won.

You can start this good habit better at your age than if you wait until later. Nothing will give you a better and bigger boost up the ladder of popularity, and the success that goes with it.

Source: Richardson, Frank Howard. For Young Adults Only: The Doctor Discusses Your Personal Problems. Atlanta, Ga.: Tupper and Love, 1961.
~ pp. 114-15 ~

My Peers Don’t Like Me

Monday, August 30th, 2010

I know this isn't easyQ Dear Miss Abigail:

Why do I feel that everyone is laughing at me just because I don’t hang around with them? If I do hang out with them, I never know what to say. I feel I’m not liked by my peers, but I’m not sure where I’m going wrong. Please help!

Signed,
Andrew

A Dear Andrew:

Pat Boone, in his fabulous book ‘Twixt Twelve and Twenty: Pat talks to Teenagers, seems to address some of your concerns. Here is a sampling from his “To be a Friend” chapter ~ perhaps it will help you gain some confidence. Now go out there and be yourself!

1958: Daring to be Yourself

It’s normal for teen-agers to form social groups. This is fine and healthy if these are circles of friendship. . . . It is quite another thing, to my mind, if they are mutual protective societies, cliques, crowds, threesomes or foursomes that use their united power to exclude or hurt others; or to give a group security to do things that not one of them would do as an individual; or to deprive members of individuality until they all follow leaders like sheep or insist on doing what ‘all the other girls do’ simply because all the other girls do it.

I’m not talking about juvenile gangs either. I’ve actually seen a strong clique of supposedly nice girls pick the feathers from an outsider, or kick out some poor gal for failure to conform, or talk about an absent one in a way that made me wonder what little girls are made of.

I know this is all unusual but I think it’s really important to guard against it happening at all. The basis of all happy social dealings is being kind to one another. I, for one, really admire the guys and gals who have the courage to insist on doing that. What I’m saying is, don’t let any group become so important to you that you will betray your own standards to belong to it. Maybe that sounds like an odd way to tell you to make a hit, but believe me, you won’t lose any friends. You may, however, find a few friends you didn’t really know you had.

Look, I know this isn’t easy. I have had my own problems along this line, like the question of joining a high school fraternity. To assume an air of exclusiveness, some frats discriminate against boys because of their poverty or belief or race. My parents disapproved of that, but when I pledged, intending to join a frat, they didn’t forbit me. Something else did. It suddenly just seemed goofy, I guess, because it didn’t stack up with the principles of friendship as I understood them. Now, it might coincide with your principles. Then it would be all right for you. But it wasn’t for me. So I had to make a stand right there.

This doesn’t mean defiance, or bitterness, or trying to tear others down. It just means the quiet courage to do what you think is right, and stand on the consequences, like the little boy whose Sunday school teacher asked: ‘If you are always kind and polite to all your playmates, what will they think of you?’

The boy said: ‘Some of them will think they can lick me.’

And some of them will think they can lick you. But when they find that they can’t, then the right ones will join you, and you have taken the step that means leadership. You are bound to be attractive to worthwhile people because now you really have what it takes to be a
friend.

Source: Boone, Pat. ‘Twixt Twelve and Twenty: Pat talks to Teenagers. Engelwood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1958.
~ pp. 98-99 ~

Do People Like You?

Monday, August 30th, 2010

do you avoid being bold and nervy?Okay, everybody, it’s quiz time again! Get those pencils sharpened, because being liked is a most wonderful thing, and I sure want all of you to be as likeable as you possibly can. This self-analysis tool was published in Unit One of the Personality Development Series, written by Estelle Hunter. And in case anyone was wondering, my score was 59. I suppose I’ve got a bit of improving to do, but no matter what, I absolutely refuse to change my answers to #4 or #35.

1939: Do People Like You?

Every normal, healthy individual wants to be liked by others. If you have ever said that you didn’t care whether or not people liked you, you probably weren’t really honest with yourself. Perhaps you were trying to cover up hurt pride. The person who says bitterly, ‘I don’t care,’ really does care a great deal. He should face the fact squarely and try to discover the reason for lack of harmony in his relationships with others.

Donald A. Laird, after a series of experiments made in the Colgate Psychological Laboratory to determine what traits were of most importance in making people liked or disliked, compiled the list of 45 questions which is quoted below.

TRAITS WHICH MAKE US LIKED
Give yourself a score of 3 for each of these questions to which you can answer ‘Yes’:
1. Can you always be depended upon to do what you say you will?
2. Do you go out of your way cheerfully to help others?
3. Do you avoid exaggeration in all your statements?
4. Do you refrain from being sarcastic?
5. Do you refrain from showing off how much you know?
6. Do you feel inferior to most of your associates?
7. Do you refrain from bossing people not employed by you?
8. Do you keep from reprimanding people who do things that displease you?
9. Do you refrain from making fun of others behind their backs?
10. Do you keep from domineering others?

Give yourself a score of 2 for each of these questions to which you can answer ‘Yes’:
11. Do you keep your clothing neat and tidy?
12. Do you avoid being bold and nervy?
13. Do you refrain from laughing at the mistakes of others?
14. Is your attitude toward the opposite sex free from vulgarity?
15. Do you keep from finding fault with everyday things?
16. Do you let the mistakes of others pass without correcting them?
17. Do you loan things to others readily?
18. Are you careful not to tell jokes that will embarrass those listening?
19. Do you let others have their own way?
20. Do you always control your temper?
21. Do you keep out of arguments?
22. Do you smile pleasantly?
23. Do you refrain from talking almost continuously?
24. Do you keep your nose entirely out of other people’s business?

Give yourself a score of 1 for each of these questions to which you can answer ‘Yes’:
25. Do you have patience with modern ideas?
26. Do you refrain from flattering others?
27. Do you avoid gossiping?
28. Do you refrain from asking people to repeat what they have just said?
29. Do you avoid asking questions in keeping up a conversation?
30. Do you avoid asking favors of others?
31. Do you refrain from trying to reform others?
32. Do you keep your personal troubles to yourself?
33. Are you natural rather than dignified?
34. Are you usually cheerful?
35. Are you conservative in politics?
36. Are you enthusiastic rather than lethargic?
37. Do you pronounce words correctly?
38. Do you look upon others without suspicion?
39. Are you energetic?
40. Do you avoid borrowing things?
41. Do you refrain from telling people their moral duty?
42. Do you refrain from trying to convert people to your beliefs?
43. Do you refrain from talking rapidly?
44. Do you refrain from laughing loudly?
45. Do you refrain from making fun of people to their faces?

The higher your score by this self-analysis the better liked you are in general. Each ‘No’ answer should be changed through self-guidance into a ‘Yes’ answer. The highest possible score is 79. About 10% of people have this score. The lowest score made by a person who was generally liked was 56. The average young person has a score of 64. The average score of a person who is generally disliked it 30. The lowest score we found was 12.

From these questions it is apparent that whether you are liked or disliked depends chiefly upon your attitude toward others. All your efforts at self-improvement will be of no avail if you think only of building up your own superiority. The consciously superior, the self-righteous person is never popular. If you would be liked, don’t try to impress the other person with your importance; make him feel important; show your interest in him.

Source: Hunter, Estelle B. Personality Development, Unit One: Your Physical Self. Chicago: The Better-Speech Institute of America, 1939.
~ pp. 120-22 ~

Feuding Friends

Monday, August 30th, 2010

those you meet on a journeyQ Dear Miss Abigail:

My friend and I are fighting. I want us to continue being friends, but we’re both stubborn. What should I do?

Signed,
Vanessa

A Dear Vanessa:

You don’t mention why you are fighting, but I have a feeling it might be related to some common issues that all friends seem to fight about ~ like what’s the best breakfast cereal, or what is saner ~ getting up early or sleeping late. Oh, no, that’s not it. Hmmm… maybe it is related to some of the issues mentioned in the following passage from the 1936 home ecomomics textbook titled Everyday Living for Girls.

1936: How May One Keep Friends?

The same qualities which help one make friends also aid in keeping them. Oversensitiveness, shyness, jealousy, gossiping, being too critical, and wanting one’s way are faults to avoid.

Jealousy destroys friendship. Jealousy sometimes breaks up friendships. Almost everyone is capable of jealousy. Do you think you could get hold of yourself, be so honest that you could look ‘the green-eyed monster’ in the face, recognize it for what it is, and tell it to leave? Sadly enough, it is not unusual for girls to be jealous of and ‘catty’ to other girls. Be generous. Be big enough to enjoy the good fortune of others ~ their clothes, good looks, social engagements, parties, school honors and other achievements. Incidentally, if you are worth-while and deserving, popularity and success will not turn your head. You will find time to remember and see old friends.

Do not gossip or pry into others’ affairs. A second way to destroy friendship is to be too inquisitive. Interest in others is natural and welcome if there is respect for the right of privacy. There is one type of girl who takes a proprietary attitude with her friends. She keeps track of everything they do and asks them direct questions about every detail of their lives. She may love them, but has a poor way of showing it ~ one which anybody may resent.

A direct personal question is in very poor taste. Only an ill-bred person asks personal questions.

Gossip is closely akin to prying into others’ affairs. Gossip, whether friendly or malicious, by intention or by accident, is a vice. It is a habit which grows. The tendency to gossip is a thing to curb in oneself and check in others. . . .

The passing of an old friendship.What would you do if you found that a friendship did not mean as much to you as it once had? Should you let old friends go? Would you cling to the friendship because of loyalty? Would this be false friendship if you’re heart were gone from it?

In the book Jeremy at Crale, Hugh Walpole has answered these questions. Jeremy’s best friend has been Jumbo. But the time has come when he finds he cannot talk to him any more. Jeremy has changed; Jumbo has not. Jeremy feels disloyal and self-critical. He has a very understanding uncle to whom he goes for advice. Uncle Samuel says that he can do nothing, and continues, ‘Friendship’s like that. You aren’t friends with someone because you want to be. You can’t have a friend unless you can feed one another. Once or twice in your life you’ll meet someone and you’ll go on with them for the rest of your days. Finer and finer it is. But for the rest ~ those you meet on a journey ~ be grateful for the times you’ve had together, let it go when it’s over, bear no grudges, above all, don’t prolong it falsely. No one knows at the start what a friendship’s going to be. Don’t hang on and be false. Life’s a movement or ought to be. Don’t be sentimental over reminiscences and don’t charge others with falseness. On the whole, you’ll be treated as you deserve.’

Source: Van Duzer, Adelaide Laura, et. al. Everyday Living for Girls. Chicago: J. B. Lippincott Company,1936.
~ pp. 380-82 ~

Everyone Wants To Be Liked

Monday, August 30th, 2010

It is a fine thing to have a sense of humorI apologize for the lag time since my last selection. The delay was due to a much-needed trip out to the woods, where I was nowhere near a computer. I hope you are not angry with me! I just want to be liked! Don’t you? Yes, I thought so. So let’s read a bit from Everyday Living for Girls: A Textbook in Personal Regimen in order to help us achieve this goal, shall we?

1936: Everyone Wants To Be Liked

Definitions of personality and character would often lead us to suppose they are one and the same. Perhaps the difference between character and personality can be most simply stated as follows: Character is one’s true moral worth, and personality its outward expression as seen by others. It is, then, quite possible to be of an upright and moral character and yet have an unpleasant personality, and vice versa. . . . Have you ever thought that we may admire our friends because they are good-looking and respect them because they are clever, but that we love them because they are pleasant and easy to get along with? Probably no one thing contributes more to popularity than being good natured. Have you tried it?

Traits others like in us. What, then, are some of the things that we should do or refrain from doing in order to be liked? In the first place, no one likes affectation on the part of others. “Be yourself,” has become a slang expression, but it is still good advice. The girl who tries to act and look more sophisticated or accomplished than she is, is making a great mistake.

People do not like interference. Do not be inquisitive about other people’s affairs, and certainly never take part in other people’s quarrels.

Do not argue. Hardly anyone can keep from getting angry or offensive when arguing, and as was said in the beginning, good nature is a great asset.

Be a good listener. Do not carry on a monologue, but give others a chance to talk. Never make fun of others. If you do, your listeners will never trust you not to make fun of them when their backs are turned.

Do not be moody. To say of one that she is always the same is a great compliment.

Sociability and friendliness are very useful and endearing traits. Friends are indispensable, and acquaintances are always possible friends.

It is a fine thing to have a sense of humor. Indeed, it is almost always listed as a necessary element in popularity. Cultivate it, if possible.

Learn what good taste is and practive it in dress, manners, and all social relations.

No one is better liked as a companion than one who is self-possessed, well poised, and who knows how to behave correctly under all circumstances.

Be interesting. Learn to talk about things rather than about people.

Do not be too sensitive. Think about other people, not about yourself and what kind of an impression you are making, and do not take offense quickly.

Do not be too critical of what others do or say, of entertainments, or conditions. There is no surer way of making others shun your companionship and of spoiling your own good times.

Always make acknowledgment of everything done for you, no matter how slight it may be. Do not look upon an act of courtesy or a favor as your just due.

These are only a few of the ways in which one may gain deserved popularity. See how many others you can add to the list.

Source: Van Duzer, Adelaide Laura, et. al. Everyday Living for Girls. Chicago: J. B. Lippincott Company,1936.
~ pp. 356-57 ~

That’s What Friends Are For

Monday, August 30th, 2010

oo one resents being correctedQ Dear Miss Abigail:

My best friend is acting really strange. She started hanging out with an old friend who always manages to get her in to trouble. I am really worried about her. Could you please help me find a way to tell her how I feel about her new old friend without hurting her feelings?

Signed,
Sunshine

A Dear Sunshine:

Let the strength of friendship swing into action! Time to tell your pal to stay out of trouble. I suppose this advice from The New Book of Etiquette isn’t terribly new anymore, since Lillian Eichler wrote it way back when. But I think still holds true, and should at least provide some good reading to you all. What better topic than friendship?

1924: The Ethics of Friendship

It is not enough to make friends; you must know how to keep them. When you make a new friend whose friendship you value and wish to keep, learn his idiosyncracies and respect them. Learn his little peculiarities of manner and bear with him. Force yourself to be conscious always of the fact that while he has faults of which you are aware, you have faults of which he is aware. The ideal friend overlooks these little things and looks only for the big.

Doubt and suspicion are fatal to friendship. A friend worth having is a friend worth trusting. In time of doubt there should be a frank explanation. A true friend will not listen to criticism from others regarding his friend; will never gossip about him; will protect him from slander; will refuse to hear or believe evil of him.

There should be absolute sincerity in friendship. If your friend has done something or said something of which you disapprove, go to him and talk to him about the matter. You are false to your friendship if you talk to others about it.

If you want to correct a friend for some mistake he has made, do so with all the grace and tact you would use in correcting a stranger. No one resents being corrected. It is the manner of the person who makes the correction that is usually resented. Your friend is certainly entitled to as much consideration as you show your acquaintances.

Too many of us feel that we can take liberties with our friends that we would not dare to take with strangers. Handle your friend’s book as carefully as you would the book of a new acquaintance, more carefully than you would handle your own. Do not feel that because it is with your friend that you have an engagement that you can be half an hour late. Real friendship is founded on courtesy, kindness, and understanding.

Source: Eichler, Lillian. The New Book of Etiquette. Garden City, N.Y.: Garden City Publishing Co., 1924.
~pp. 74-75 ~

Unstick Me From Seventeen

Sunday, August 15th, 2010

she yields to the pressure of opinionQ Dear Miss Abigail:

I am seventeen years old and have hardly no experience with other kids my age. I am a girl but I feel so unfeminine and not pretty. It ruins everything when you’re stuck like this. What should I do?

Signed,
Lolita

A Dear Lolita:

Wow, Abigail, is that you? Oh, sorry, I thought you were me as a teenager speaking. You are not stuck, you are just seventeen. Things will get better. Personally, I had to wait until my thirties for things to really pick up, but it’s been worth the wait. I turned out okay, don’t you think? Here are some thoughts from our friends Evelyn and Sylvanus Duvall on growing up at your own pace. It’s from their 1962 book titled Sense and Nonsense About Sex.

1962: How Much Is Popularity Worth to You?

A considerable body of evidence indicates that the effort to be popular is overshadowing the real education and development girls need to become happy, creative women today. So much energy is put into getting into the social whirl that girls have little time or strength left for the study and reflection that are required to reach full maturity as persons.

Many a girl is trapped early in her teens into thinking that getting boys’ attention is the most important thing in life for her. She yields to the pressure of opinion that being popular with the fellows is necessary in order to feel adequate as a girl. She learns early in her high school career that getting into activities is one way to social success, and so she rushes from one thing to another in an effort to keep up with what she thinks is expected of her.

The girl who grows up at her own pace enjoys fellows and girls in her own way. She belongs only to those clubs that appeal to her; she associates with people she enjoys, regardless of whether they are ‘the big wheels’ or not. She may not have a date every Saturday night. She may prefer going to church Sunday evening to going out on the town. She isn’t afraid of studying and getting the grades that she merits. She doesn’t mind being ‘a nice kid’ because she knows deep within herself that being the most popular girl in high school may not be worth all it costs.

Many of the world’s greatest women were not particularly popular through their school days. They started out shy and retiring, seriously studying their lessons and slowly developing the talent within them. They didn’t try to force themselves into premature commitments or activities. But they laid foundations during their teens on which they could build through the years.

A parallel can be drawn from hothouse flowers forced to bloom in time for the holidays. Horticulturists have been able to bring lilies to market in time for Easter, poinsettias for the Christmas trade, mums for football games, and colorful displays in time for Mother’s Day. But although these flowers bloom in time for market, they rarely can be transplanted successfully into the home garden where they might thrive through the years.

Why should girls be forced into early blooming, and lose the chance to mature slowly for the rich full years that lie ahead of them as women, wives, mothers, and persons in the modern world?

Source: Duvall, Evelyn M. and Sylvanus M. Sense and Nonsense About Sex. New York: Association Press, 1962.
~ pp. 62-64 ~

Platonic Relationship = Happiness?

Sunday, August 1st, 2010

fiddlesticks!Q Dear Miss Abigail:

I have a fantastic friendship with a woman, which has been going on for a over five years now. Though I have dated other women, and she other men, we remain strictly platonic, much to the surprise of our friends and respective families. We love each other, but only as friends. Is that so wrong? Are we fooling ourselves?

Signed,
Just Might Be Crazy

A Dear Just:

I don’t necessarily believe you are crazy, but there may be more complicated issues regarding your so-called platonic relationship. Author Elinor Glyn seems to agree with your friends and relatives…

1923: Platonic Friendship

The general notion of platonic friendship is an intimacy between a man and a woman which has no element of sex in it, but which is nearly as warm as love!

They are supposed to be together constantly, and enjoy each other’s conversation and mental tastes, but they are not supposed to give each other thrills! and each is free to love someone else.

The whole thing is a fallacy of course! except under certain conditions which I shall come to presently. If young people are sufficiently interested in one another to desire to spend all the time they can together, the element of love, or physical attraction is holding one of them, if not both ~ although it may be unconsciously.

If girls or young men have several pals whom they dance with, and spend the moments of their mutual amusements with ~ and never single out one specially, that is the nearest to platonic friendship that very probably they will ever attain! But if a pair spend their time continually together, you may be certain there are some thrills between them! . . . .

I must reiterate: The moment either a girl or a man shows sufficient interest in a particular one of the opposite sex to prefer his or her society to all others, then nature has begun to stir one of them, or both ~ and an incipient love emotion is the result ~ and an affair starts which the French call an “amitié amoureuse,” which translated means actually, “an in-love friendship,” and this is the gradual prelude to passion, and never lasts as it is.

Platonic friendship may be possible between a girl and an elderly, or old, man, because in that case the girl feels no sex emotion towards the man, and the man is no longer under the dominion of physical things, so their minds are free to find companionship ~ but even so, if the affair is very close, the man will probably continue it because, subconsciously, physical attraction has entered into it.

You can see cases of apparently perfect platonic affection and friendship which are the most glaring fallacies of all! ~ almost every woman has one in her life which may run all through it ~ but she knows in her heart that the man would wish for something more, only that she feels nothing for him, and so his hunting instinct, being constantly stimulated, he accepts from her any terms of intimacy she may accord to him.

Then there are some “good fellow” women who never seem to arouse the slightest physical desire or sex interest in any man, and yet are pals with them all, but men do not scheme to spend their time with these, unless they are very amusing companions. For next to the sex instinct, with all its ramifications in man, the desire to be amused is the strongest one!

If I saw Walter and Claire continually dancing at every party, and talking walks and rides together, in what was supposed to be purely a platonic way ~ and they told me they had merely a friendship, I should say “Fiddlesticks! You are both deceiving yourselves! I shall not believe you unless I can see you just as you are in a year’s time, as devoted ~ as fused in companionship ~ but without thrills!”

Of course it would either die down and each grow indifferent, or it would turn into love. . . .

But if you are determined to know the sweets of platonic friendship, then be sensible, and get the love business (which is the only foundation for the possibility of the thing) over as quickly as you can, and then settle down into the companionship of the mind, or a strong mutual interest in games.

[This last part is for the “Claire” in your life ~ Miss A.]

When you are dressing to dine along and dance with Walter, and you find you are tingling with pleasurable excitement as you dab the unnecessary powder on your fresh young face ~ don’t be a goose and tell yourself that the emotion you are feeling is only platonic! ~ own frankly that it is the natural manifestation of youth and love, and will require your best wits to guide
wisely!

Source: Glyn, Elinor. The Philosophy of Love. Auburn, N.Y.: The Authors’ Press, 1923.
~ pp. 70-73, 76-77 ~

He’s As Dull As My Grandpa’s Dentures!

Saturday, July 17th, 2010

what is it about joe that marion likes?Q Dear Miss Abigail:

My beautiful, creative, talented, cool friend is engaged to a perfectly gross man. Not only is he as dull as my grandpa’s dentures, he’s also kind of a jerk. Should I tell her how I feel about him? How do I avoid him without dumping her?

Your fan,
Irritated with Her Soggy Boyfriend

A Dear Irritated:

Such a sticky situation you face! Your friend sounds deserving of a much more wonderful man, but is it really up to her friends to let her know that? Even though you might be tempted to say something, it might be best for her to come to that realization herself. And then you’ll never have to see him again!

I’m hoping that these words can provide some guidance, for you and for her. She must make absolutely sure that this jerk is the man she wants to spend the rest of her life with. She must also realize that her future might not include her dear friends if she stays with him. Goodness, let’s hope she’s reading!

1956: Compatibility

Future spouses should have similar likes and dislikes over a wide field, but not necessarily identical interests, for this would make a dull life. Compatibility means that they have the same ideas of what is right, proper, polite, etc., and that all their interests fit reasonably together. This holds for wealth level, intellectual level, and so on. Though stories of successful marriages between rich and poor, intellectual and mediocre, refined and brusque, are frequent, the actual chances of success in these cases are low. “Marry your own” is a worthwhile motto in every sphere.

Source: Sattler, Henry V. Parents, Children and the Facts of Life. Garden City, N.Y.: Image Books, 1956.
~ p. 206 ~

1967: Your Friends’ Opinion

A high school girl asks, “If your friends do not approve of a boy, can you afford to go out with him?” She goes on to tell of how only she, of her whole group of pals, is interested in Joe. She wonders whether she should go with Joe in the face of her friends’ disapproval or whether she should follow their advice and give him up.

The answer to such a question depends upon several factors. First of all, why don’t her friends approve of the boy? What it is about Joe that Marion likes? How much do Marion’s friends mean to her? How much does the boy mean? Could she stand losing her friends if need be over Joe? Or are they so important to her that she couldn’t give them up? . . .

How Can You Judge?

The big question for many young people is: How can you judge another person? Should a girl judge a boy by what her family says about him or by what she knows of him? Should a boy judge a girl by what people say about her or by what he sees in her? Or both? How much should one listen to others in judging an individual? And how much can one trust one’s own judgment in appraising another’s personality? These are difficult questions to answer, especially when we realize how much is at stake in the reputation and the future happiness of the persons involved.

Source: Duvall, Evelyn Millis. The Art of Dating. New York: Association Press, 1967.
~ pp. 63, 65 ~