Maybe you're a teenager with your first boyfriend, or maybe you're already a little older but have always struggled whenever you have to share news of a relationship with your strict folks. Alternatively, maybe you're a guy yourself, struggling with how to tell your parents you're gay. Whatever way, telling your parents that you have a boyfriend can be intimidating, but if you approach the topic the right way, they might be willing to accept the news. If things go really well, they might even be happy for you. Here are a few suggestions about how to get the task done with as little tension as possible.
Write it out. If you're afraid you'll get flustered, it's perfectly fine to write out what you think you'll say. This can help you process what you want to say so that you can present your new relationship in the best way possible. That way, when the time comes, you'll be able to get it out without stopping. As you write out what you might say, you may try to anticipate your parents' responses. That way you can answer their concerns as you tell them about your boyfriend.
Practice delivering the news. It's normal to feel apprehensive about telling your parents about your new relationship. Practicing what you'll say to them can make it easier. Use a friend or understanding relative for practice. You can also practice in front of a mirror. AAsksomeone you trust to help, not someone who may reveal your news before you're ready. For example, choose a cousin you're close to rather than an older sibling, who might feel obligated to tell your parents.
Figure out who to tell first. You might have a parent you feel closer to or maybe one of your parents tends to be more lenient than the other. Oftentimes, breaking the news to a parent who is easier to talk to can clear the way for talking to the other parent. For instance, if you grew up as a "daddy's girl," meaning you can now wrap him around your little finger, you might start with your dad. On the other hand, if your dad tends to be overprotective, you might start with your mother instead. This approach can be an especially helpful idea if you are a teenager with your first boyfriend.
Pick a good time. You don't want to tell your parents when they are busy with something else or when they aren't in a good mood. If you want, you can ask them when a good time to talk would be. Try to choose a time when the house is calm, and your parents are not stressed or distracted by something else. However, don't use picking a good time as a way to continually put off telling them. You will need to tell them eventually, so you might as well get it over with.
Identify what you're feeling. You are hesitating about telling your parents for a reason. Do you think that your parents will be mad because you're dating? Maybe you think they won't approve of the person you're dating. On the other hand, maybe you just prefer to keep your personal life private. Knowing what you're feeling is important because you can use that in the discussion. For instance, if you think that your parents think that you aren't ready to date, you could say, "Mom and Dad, I need to talk to you about something. I've been a little hesitant to tell you that I have a boyfriend because I think you think that I'm not old enough."
Get it over with. Once you sit down, you just need to get the conversation over with. Don't beat around the bush. However, you can soften the blow with qualifiers. For instance, you could say, "I really love you two, and I don't want to make you mad. Also, I really want to be honest with you about my life. I want to tell you about the boy that I've started dating."
Talk about why you feel you are ready to date. If you are trying to make a case for dating, lay out the reasons why you think you should be able to. For instance, maybe you think that you should be able to date because you are in high school, and most people your age are allowed to date. Be reasonable, and don't get angry if your parents don't agree. Your parents probably won't respond well to "But everyone else is doing it!" However, you can pull statistics off the internet about the average age that people start dating, and you can bring up points about how you've shown your maturity in the last year.
Be willing to negotiate. If you're parents don't want you to date and you're asking them to let you, you need to be willing to compromise. Maybe you can suggest that you only see your boyfriend at school or that you only go on group dates with other people. Your parents just want to protect you, so you have to be willing to give up some of your freedom. Listen to what your parents have to say and consider if their concerns are legitimate. Although they may be frustrating sometimes, remember that your parents are older and have more experience than you do. They may spot red flags or issues of concern that you haven't experienced yet. If they express concerns, watch out for signs that they could be true.
Discuss the person. Tell your parents about your boyfriend. Talk to them about his family and what you like about him. Highlight his good qualities so they get a sense of who he is. It's also helpful to have a photo for them to see. Your parents will probably have many, many questions. It is advisable to answer every question as honestly and fully as possible to reassure them about your new relationship. If you try to hide or lie about something, your parents may become suspicious and anxious. If your boyfriend has a good relationship with his family, make sure your parents know. This trait is a major plus for many parents because it lets them know that this new guy in your life knows how to value others and can appreciate the tight ties of family.
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