The Teen Doctor

Answers to your questions about adolescents

My Mother Has Changed Since She Started Dating

My mom is embarrassing me.

Dear Dr. G,

I know that parents usually write to you to complain about us but I am writing to complain about my mother. My parents got divorced about a year ago. My brothers and I were very upset about it at first but now we feel much better since we get to see both of our parents.

Here is my problem. Let me tell you that I'm a teenage girl and I am finishing my junior year of high school. I have always had a semi-decent relationship with my mother even though she has always been a little strict and uptight. I'm basically a good kid but sometimes I do find ways around mom's rules. Well, lately, my basically uptight mother has changed her ways. Since she has started dating again she dresses like a teenager and looks ridiculous. She came to my soccer game wearing a mini-skirt and high heels. None of the other mothers were dressed like that. I swear that everyone was staring at her. Some of my male friends have made comments about mom that make me sick but I blame mom not them.

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What do you think I should do? I can't deal with this. My mom is not a teenager.

An Embarrassed Teen

 

Dear Teen,

I really do understand how you are feeling. You are right. Your mother is an adult not a teenager and I understand why it would embarrass you to have your mother suddenly change her style.

Your mother is entering a new world for her which is post-divorce dating and is likely trying out a new style. It sounds like she may be taking things too far. What she wears on a date may not necessarily be appropriate for a soccer game.

I wonder if your mother has any idea about how she is coming across and about how you are feeling. It sounds to me like she cares very much about your feelings or she wouldn't be coming to your soccer games, right?

Here are my suggestions:Tell your mother that you would like to talk to her. Then in a gentle and kind manner tell her that you feel that she is dressing a bit inappropriately for your games. Let her know that you are more comfortable when she blends in and looks like a mother. It doesn't sound to me like you want her to dress dowdy just that you want her to be a little more thoughtful when selecting clothing. After all, she is not a teen but an adult woman and a mother.

My guess is that she will listen to you. Remember, she is new to this post-divorce dating game and may be a bit confused.

Good luck,

Dr.G.

For more articles like this take a look at my site:

http://www.talkingteenage.com/

Barbara Greenberg, Ph.D., is a clinical psychologist who specializes in the treatment of adolescents and their well-intentioned but exhausted parents.

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