Annie Fox for Teens... Hey, Terra!

Annie (AKA Hey Terra!) has been around long enough to have experienced a lot of what Life can dish out. But, it hasn’t been so long that she's forgotten what it's like to be your age. Check out some of the thousands of email questions teens from around the world have sent to Terra. You may learn something useful from her answers:

Peer pressure:
“My friends are pressuring me to break up with my girlfriend.”

Hey Terra,

I gotta bit of a problem. None of my friends like my girlfriend (guys and girls). They are telling me that I should break up with her and stuff like that. It's really annoying me because I like her a lot. It's not their life, and I don't see why they would care who my girlfriend is. It's kinda like they are trying to control my life, or that I have to live up to their expectations.

What can I do??

Trapped

Dear Trapped,

Wow, she's got a lot of votes against her! Doesn't it make you wonder why? What are all of these friends (who probably know you well and care about you) trying to telling you about your girlfriend? You say you feel like they are "trying to control" your life. It's a big job to try to control someone else's life and since they each have their own lives to control, I just can't see that they all would want to control yours. It doesn't make sense. There's something else going on here that you don't know about.

Let's assume that your friends really care about you and don't want to see you hurt. What might they be trying to protect you from? Do you know why they don't like her? Have they told you? Have you asked? I'm not saying they are right and you ought to do whatever they are pressuring you to do, but I would suggest that you think about what's going on here. Have a heart to heart conversation with the one friend that you feel closest to and see what you can learn about his/her perspective. There might be something valuable for you to find out. If, after you really explore why no one likes the idea of your being with this girl, you decide that she is a good choice for you, then stick with her. Calmly let your friends know that you are not breaking up with her and you'd appreciate their not pressuring you about it any more.

I hope this helps.

In friendship,

Terra


Need some advice? Write to Terra. She'll give you a straight answer you can trust without any lectures.


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