Monkey_Candy13 asks: I need some advice on friends. My friend and I apparently watched something that we shouldn’t be watching (you know). Then she told her mom and her mom said you have to tell your dad and he told her to not hang out with me anymore. My friend is very protective of her dad and always thinks he’s right, even when he is wrong (even if she and her Mom agree he is). You would probably think, “Don’t you have other friends?” and I do, but every time I want to hang with them, they always say they are busy – while this friend has always made time for me. I have tried fixing things between us, but she never lets me talk about anything. So I sent her a letter, but she has not replied. My friend even unfriended me on Facebook. I really hope you can help!
Hi Monkey_Candy13 –
I think you are dealing with two questions here, really. But the answer to both of them might be the same thing.
The first question is what to do about being caught watching something inappropriate. I wish this weren’t the case, but the truth is that today, with the internet, it’s almost impossible to imagine someone could be a teenager and not have any curiosity about what’s considered naughty or unacceptable. This is part of why parents are absolutely freaked about their kids going online – it’s not that they might discover something, it’s that it’s so easy to discover EVERYthing! Parents, such as your friend’s dad, feel absolutely helpless. They don’t want their kids seeing too much, and will go to crazy means to keep that from happening. And while you, your friend, and her mother, all might realize that being around you wasn’t the cause of her watching that stuff, and being around you now wouldn’t mean she’d do it again, her dad is stuck with trying to do ANYthing he can to keep that from happening.
Meanwhile, the second is how you can re-connect your friendship with this best-of-all-friends. Even though she’s trying to be loyal to her father, by cutting you out.
Well, I have one idea. It’s scary, and would take a lot of bravery. But if you’ve got the guts, it’s possible that it could work.
I think you should talk with her dad.
Now, Monkey_Candy13, this can only work if you absolutely bowl him over with your maturity. So do I mean that you should go over to their house, ring their doorbell, and when he answers, start yelling at him that he’s a great big poophead?
Do I mean that you should send him texts and emails about how he’s an unreasonable jerk?
Do I mean that you should write nasty things about him on Facebook?
But what if you wrote him a serious letter, and emailed it to him? And in it you explained that you understand how bothered he was by what you and your friend did, and how you regret it – especially regretting that you went behind his back and betrayed his trust. And then you listed about five reasons he could believe in, about why you wouldn’t do this again (such as that what you saw bothered you; that you miss your friend and her family –including him of course – and the integrity that they have, which is more than you see in your other friends; that you want very much to earn his respect; etc.). And that you ask for his forgiveness.
And then let it go at that.
Don’t ask to hang with your friend. Don’t ask for him to invite you over. Just ask him to forgive you for your part in this act.
And then see what happens.
It’s possible that nothing will. That he’s so angry, and feels so negatively toward you, that you simply can’t move him past this stance. And if that happens, then I’m afraid that there’s nothing you can do – you’ll just have to wait for your friend to come back around someday.
But I’m going to guess that a letter like that would actually shift his attitude toward you. You see, if he reads that letter, what he’ll see in there is “Monkey_Candy13 really listened to me! She’s really learned from this. She’s growing up!” And suddenly, instead of being the friend he sees as the problem, you might suddenly become the friend he most values, out of all his daughter’s pals!
And I think there’s a really good chance he’d then reach out to you. And at the very least say, “Thank you.” But maybe, just maybe, he’d also say, “I’m impressed with how much you’ve thought about this.”
And then, after he’s said something to you, THEN it would be time to ask to hang with your friend again.
You see, it’s like when Handsome is cooking. He knows I want some of whatever he’s making. And I could go jump up and try to eat something off the stove. But I know that would just annoy him and he’d put me outside. But if I show respect, and I sit politely by his feet… oh Monkey_Candy13, you have no idea how many treats I get fed! It’s just glorious!
So that’s my suggestion. Sorry it’s been such a tough situation. I hope things get better very very soon.