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Old 04-21-2007, 04:26 PM
The Flying Dutchman The Flying Dutchman is offline
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Older Middle-aged Men and Teenage Girls

I'm an older aged man who after many years figures he's got a handle on women. Finally. But I've had two teenage daughters, one who is about to become sixteen, and they are a mystery. Im never prepared to engage my young daughter's friends in a conversation. There is a comfort zone when you do talk to your own daughters but they don't seem to mind not letting you know what they think just about everthing except their allowance and their curfews. Can I really meaningfully connect with a teenage girl?

Well, I just received a call from a girl I did not recognize for my 16 year old daughter. I told her that daughter was out with her mother. Then I blurted "That's pathetic isn't it . "
She replied immediately, "What's the matter, doesn't she have any friends?'

I was stunned. After all, my daughter has lots of friends. That was so truly funny to me. It got me thinking.

The last several months I noticed that the 16 year old was actually doing homework. Two days ago she brought home an all A report card. Something I hadn't seen come close since grade 3 or thereabouts.

Are her friends changing as a result? Is she gaining smarter friends? Like the one who just called? Or is everyone just growing up?

Either way its fun to speculate. But this little tidbit exchange excited me. I actually connected with a strange teenage girl. Life does have its wonderfull moments.
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Old 04-21-2007, 08:15 PM
pizzabrat pizzabrat is offline
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Hmm?
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Old 04-21-2007, 08:20 PM
tomndebb tomndebb is offline
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You "connected" with a teenage girl by deprecating your daughter for happening to be out of the house in the presence of her mother and you are excited about that? (I'm also a bit confused how you consider the phone caller's response to you as indicative of "connection," but perhaps one of us has had too little beer, this afternoon.)
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Old 04-21-2007, 09:16 PM
What Exit? What Exit? is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tomndebb
You "connected" with a teenage girl by deprecating your daughter for happening to be out of the house in the presence of her mother and you are excited about that? (I'm also a bit confused how you consider the phone caller's response to you as indicative of "connection," but perhaps one of us has had too little beer, this afternoon.)
I read it as he made an obviously humorous joke and the friend made a similar reply in turn.

This is actually a mode of conversation I frequently use with my own friends. I am getting the impression that in the past, when The Flying Dutchman talk to his daughters friends, they would not have caught the humor. You know, they would have been whooshed by his remark.

The Flying Dutchman, that is pretty cool. Sounds like your daughter turned a small corner and it was a good one.

Jim
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Old 04-21-2007, 09:51 PM
SnakesCatLady SnakesCatLady is offline
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Sounds like your daughter has started to learn that grades are important.

But I am really puzzled about your remark about your daughter being out with her mother. What in the world is "pathetic" about a girl spending time with her mother? And why would that mean she doesn't have any friends?
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Old 04-21-2007, 10:00 PM
Shagnasty Shagnasty is offline
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I am confused as well but I think it was all in the situation and delivery. She is 16 and the OP does indicate it happened on a Saturday night when most teenaged girls would want to be out on their own. Both exchanges were sarcasm directed at the facts and not really a joke at the daughter's expense.
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Old 04-22-2007, 10:32 AM
The Flying Dutchman The Flying Dutchman is offline
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Some people get it and some people don't. What Exit? clearly gets it.

Look, after many years of starting conversation with my daughter's visiting friends and only getting "cautious" one word responses I sort of accepted that we live in different worlds.

I recalled in my youth that being seen with my parents in public by my peers embarrassed me to a small degree. It drew attention in my mind to the fact that I didn't haver many friends. My daughter does and so I felt comfortable in making a joke which clearly drew an adult response.

I could have let that go, but have you ever stopped and smelled the flowers? I did in this case, liberating a train of thought that just sort of made me feel really good and thus inclined to share. Parenthood certainly has its sacrifices, but there are many small rewards that are even more precious when you stop to think about it.

Of course, I may just be pathetic to make such a big deal about it.
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Old 04-22-2007, 03:07 PM
Napier Napier is offline
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There can be a really enjoyable stage with teenage children after they have already become distant and established some independence of personality, where they notice that you are doing a good job of being adult, which they of course are trying to learn. So they become closer again, but in a less dependent and more appreciative way, because they discover they like you and are fascinated with your ways. It makes sense that this concides with being more serious about things like education.
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