” You are your child’s keeper until she’s mature enough to keep herself.”
~ Laura Ramirez, author, Keepers of the Children
I am very glad you are writing us because it is very common for parents to disapprove of the person their son or daughter is dating. Since you didn’t mention your dad I am imagining your mom is a single parent, so I am answering your letter from that perspective.
I do not think the initial goal is to get her to agree to allow you to go back out with him, but rather ask your mom if she would be willing to let you have him over to the house while she is home. Explain to her that you too had conflicting feelings about him, but have come to trust him after spending more time with him. Let her know that you understand her feelings, but need more help from her in coping with your conflict.
I would let your mom know that you understand she has your best interest in her heart and that she is trying to protect you, and that is a good thing for a parent to want to do. Let her know that your feeling for him changed once you got to know him better. Tell her you would like to see how she feels after getting to know him just a bit more.
I don’t think this has to be anything formal, a big dinner or family meeting of any kind, but allowing the three of you to share a bit of time together as an experiment seems like a worthwhile effort. It might even be just the three of you in the house at the same time and allowing for any interaction that takes place.
I would also enlist the help of your guidance counselor at school. This is standard fare for them, and he or she may be able to guide you through this difficult passage.
Parents feel very anxious as they watch their children grow into young adults. They have tried to protect you from the slings and arrows of the world, and seemingly overnight they have to both foster independence and still feel responsible for your well-being. Driving cars, dating and sex, exposure to drugs and alcohol, all weigh heavily on a parent’s mind, and doubly so for a single parent. Your mom wants to help, and now you can offer at least one idea about how she may be able to that. Hopefully the experience will instill more confidence in her with respect to this person you wish to have as a part of your life.
Wishing you patience and peace,
This article has been updated from the original version, which was originally published here on June 2, 2010.