Q Dear Miss Abigail:
My family does not like my boyfriend. We had broken up for awhile, but it looks like we’re on again ~ at least for now. I know that he’s changed his naughty ways, the question is: how can I make them see that this is true? Should I break with my family or break my heart?
A Dear Broken:
Sounds like you are in a pickle! I only hope that this advice will help bridge the gap between your loved ones and your love life.
1965: Going Steady
If the folks think a certain companion is not for you ~ trust their mature judgment ~ and drop that one. There are so many dates in your young life that one more or less is not worth a family feud. Besides, variety should be the spice of your date-life at first. How else can you know what you want without a basis for comparison and value? . . .
Parent-SELF differences over dates usually don’t develop until you reach this stage of deciding to go steady. So pull yourself down to earth and listen to them, if they protest loudly about your choice. They aren’t in the same blue mist as you, and consequently from their place on the fence, they see better. It’s not because they want to oppose or deny you pleasure or run your life. It’s rather to spare you unnecessary headache and even heartache, because some steadies can develop into an awful pain.
If you feel certain mother and dad are wrong or unfair or prejudiced in their judgment, the best way to prove it all around is for the four of you to spend an evening together at home. The folks will play it straight. Invite your friend to dinner and spend the after hours talking, playing cards or records. It’s the best test for manners, moods, likes and dislikes you can name. Sportsmanship and character come out in the way a person plays a game ~ personal preferences bespeak themselves in a choice of music ~ manners show up at the table, on arrival and leave-taking ~ likes and dislikes are unconsciously expressed in conversation. Everybody’s on his own on an evening like this ~ and you shouldn’t feel the least bit apprehensive about subjecting any right-thinking person to meeting your folks and surveying your home life. As a matter of fact, you should be proud to show off your date and be shown off in your natural element. If the folks were wrong in their opinion of your friend, they’ll be the first to admit it. If you are, the reasons will have spoken for themselves. No harm done anyone.
Source: Pemberton, Lois. The Stork Didn’t Bring You: Sex Education for Teen-Agers. New York: Thomas Nelson & Sons, 1965.
~ p. 220-22 ~