Homecoming is just around the corner. It's been a few years since I had to give dating advice to my now 24-year-old son, but as the mother of three daughters, one aged 17, maybe I can help a few boys with a little bit of "homework" before they start to ask for my daughter's hand in homecoming.
A pre-Homecoming date is perfect. Please consider asking my daughter out for a date before the Homecoming date. You may find that girl that you think is pretty and nice isn't such a great date. She may find out that she doesn't think your antics at school are all that funny when she is your only audience. Before you both have a bad time at Homecoming, try a date on for size in much the same way you would a dress, suit or pair of shoes.
To pay or not to pay that is the question. Yes, you will have to pay, unless, we'll will get to that. I'm all for my daughter's learning self-sufficiency and independence, and if they were to ask you out I would expect them to pay. So, you will need to buy tickets, flowers and come dressed appropriately for a Homecoming date. After hours working on their hair, nails, make up and expensive dresses, it's only fair. Now, before you think I'm one of "those" moms, if paying is a problem say so. I'm happy to buy their ticket and even host a dinner party for you and your friends to save the cost of going out to eat. I would rather you were honest and worked with what you have, than try to do something that will be a hardship for you. Most importantly I wouldn't want you to think that because you paid for it that you earned something in return.
Treat them the way you would treat your sister. Just think of what you would do to someone who didn't treat your sister with respect, every time you go out with her. Now, you know how we would feel if you don't treat our daughter's with respect. This means doing little things like ringing the doorbell and greeting me instead of honking the horn. This means opening the car door and closing it so my daughter can make sure her dress doesn't get ruined. This also means keeping your hands right around the "equator." There's nothing north or south of there that you need to be concerned about. Remember they are not just your date or your girlfriend, they are sisters and daughters and while you may not always like your sister, you probably will always love her.
Let me have a good time, and you should have one too. I know all those pictures and the comments are embarrassing. But as parents we enjoy those few moments. Be gracious and let us take your picture to remember this very special event by. Part of your fun can include making fun of me and your own parents as we overwhelm you with cautions to be careful, have fun and smile for the camera.
As parents we don't ask for much. Be kind, caring, honest and respectful. You don't have to be rich or popular or handsome, but remember beauty is in the eye of the beholder. If my daughter thinks you are, then there is nothing more handsome than accepting her praise with humility. Hopefully our daughters will appreciate those qualities too. Now that you know what this mother wants for her daughters, go grab that phone and make that date! But I would prefer you ask her in person.
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