Homeschooling Teen

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Honest Advice with Sugar and Spice

By Olyvea and Ethan

Olyvea Pancerella and Ethan Faulkes answer questions on homeschooling, dating, and life in general. Olyvea says, “One of the most unique things we can contribute is male and female perspectives on questions and ideas.” Send them your questions at polyvea@gmail.com.

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QUESTION 1

Hi,

My little sister is 13 and I’m 15. My mom has always said that we aren’t allowed to use makeup until we are 17. I’ve never been very into makeup so I never minded the rule much, but my sister really wants to wear it. She thinks the no makeup rule is silly so she started wearing it behind my moms back. I don’t want to tell my mom about it, but if my mom finds out she’s been wearing it I know I’ll be in trouble for not telling her. What should I do?

Help,

Kate

Olyvea,

Try talking to your sister. Tell her that she’s putting you in a bad situation because you’ll be in trouble too if your mom finds out. Hopefully, if you talk to her nicely she’ll understand and stop for your sake. You said she thinks it’s a silly rule. So, you could try sitting down with your mom together and ask why she feels you shouldn’t wear makeup. Maybe if she knows your mom’s reasons she will have an easier time accepting the rule.

Ethan,

I disagree, I think you should talk to your mom. It sucks telling on your sister, but it’s your mom’s rule so she needs to follow it. You shouldn’t have to get in trouble for her. I think even if your sister is mad at first she’ll realize you’re in a lousy position and forgive you soon enough.

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QUESTION 2  

Hi,

I’m 14 and I live with my grandparents and my grandmother has this rule that I’m not allowed to shave my legs until I’m 16. I was fine with it a couple years ago, but now I’m really self-conscious. All my friends shave, but I’m the dork who’s not allowed. I don’t know how to convince my grandma to let me. I don’t even like wearing shorts in the summer anymore because of it and my grandma just doesn’t understand. She thinks the only reason girls shave is for boys.

Thanks,

Summer

Olyvea,

I think the only thing you can do is try talking to your grandmother in a very mature manner. Try calmly and reasonably explaining that you feel self-conscious and you would like to shave for you. Make sure you say wanting to shave had nothing to do with guys. It’s just to make you feel good. She probably just doesn’t want to see her little girl grow up, but if you talk to her maturely she might be able to see your point of view.

Ethan,

Well, I’m not sure what to say on this one. I’d just say that even if your grandma doesn’t come around and let you shave remember it’s only a couple more years until you’re sixteen. That’s less time to wait than you think.

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QUESTION 3    

Hi, Ethan and Olyvea!

I’m 13 and I’ve been home schooled since 6th grade, but when I was in elementary school I met this guy. Me and him became really fast friends and we’ve stayed in touch through the years even after I started homeschooling. I started to have feelings for this guy about a year ago, but I never told anyone. When anyone would ask who I liked I’d just say no one. Well, finally I told a friend of mine and she said that she was going to tell him. I really don’t want her to because I think it would make things awkward between me and him. I told her not to, but she said she’d be doing me a favor to tell him because she thinks he likes me back. I know she is just trying to help, but how do I tell her, without being mean, that I don’t want her help.

Thanks,

Ella

Olyvea,

Just tell her nicely, but firmly, that you hadn’t told anyone else because you were scared they would tell him, but you thought she was trustworthy. Let her know that if she tells him then she has proved that she can’t be trusted anymore. Make clear that you would like to continue confiding in her, but she has to be able to keep your secrets. Hopefully, if you say something along those lines it will be enough to make her realize telling him would hurt your friendship and embarrass you.

Ethan,

I agree, that’s probably the best thing to say to her so she understands. You could assure her that you will tell him yourself when the time is right and you feel ready. It’s your relationship, not hers. Remember even if she does tell him he probably won’t believe her. At least, I’ve never believed it when girls say stuff like that to me. I usually just assume they’re just spreading rumors.

When it comes to sharing secrets I always try to remember “If you reveal your secrets to the wind, you should not blame the wind for revealing them to the trees.” ― Kahlil Gibran

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QUESTION 4

Hello,

I met this guy at summer camp and I really like him. We’ve been going out for about 6 months. He lives close to me so we get to see each other almost every weekend. Well, last weekend he told me he doesn’t believe in God and my family is very religious. I’m not sure I can be with someone who can’t share that with me, but at the same time I really like him and I don’t want to dump him just because of this. What do I do? Is it possible I could change his mind?

Thank you,

Ivy

Olyvea,

There’s good news and bad news here. The bad news is that you can’t change his mind, but the good news is that if you are both open minded you can still have a good relationship. Sometimes people with different opinions on stuff like that can lead to very interesting debates and discussions. As long as you are respectful and don’t try to change each other you could still have a good relationship if you want. It’s up to you to decide if you can be with someone who can’t share God with you. If you can’t your only option is to break up with him. You can’t stay with him hoping his beliefs will change.

Ethan,

Honestly, I think that’s a pretty big thing to have different beliefs on. I think to make a relationship work you need the same values. If you are very religious and he doesn’t believe in God it’s going to be hard to make a relationship work. Maybe it can be done if you both respect each others views, but I think it would be strenuous. You can’t change anyone, so I would try to find someone with values similar to yours.

Until next time,

Olyvea and Ethan

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Olyvea Pancerella and Ethan Faulkes are both 16 and both going into 11th grade. Olyvea has been homeschooled since first grade and Ethan has been homeschooled since third grade. Email any questions to: polyvea@gmail.com

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