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Monday, December 15, 2014

Three Quick Questions

Dear Bro Jo,

I really need help with a few things (actually 3 things) but I don't want to ask my mum.

First before I start, I think I should tell you I'm a fifteen year old girl who lives in Australia (I thought I should say that to explain the different spelling) and I'm LDS.

Ok, here's what I need help with:

Firstly, I like a non-member boy who is the same age as me and he's been in the same form class as me for the past 2 years and is again.
He seems to like me but I don't really know (I know that I shouldn't date until I'm sixteen and I don't really want to date right now).
He seems really sweet and nice but he's a non-member and he has very foul language. I would like to get to know him (yes Know that you say boys and girls can't just be friends) before I turn sixteen, just in case I do want to date. I really care about him but I don't know if he would.
 How can I get to know him?
(By the way there isn't a Tri-Stake dance until April, so I can't get him to go to a Church dance with me)

Secondly, a new school year started recently and there is a new boy who's in my class.
He knows some people at my school and one of those people just happens to be my best friend (a non-member), that wouldn't be a problem if they both like each other and my best friend asked him out (he was going to ask her out but he got really nervous and didn't but my best friend doesn't know that).
I'm afraid that my best friend will be upset if they stop going out which I think might in a few weeks and they've only been going out two days.
She's thirteen and he's fourteen which is a bit too young to be dating as boyfriend and girlfriend.
The thing is how can I tell my best friend that they're too young?

The Last thing hasn't got to with love or dating.
I feel left out in Sunday School and Young Women’s because I'm the only (and I'm not trying be to racist) white girl in my Ward.
Can you tell me how I can try to fit in? 

- From a Little Aussie Sister

Dear LAS,

(That's "Little Aussie Sister", get it?)

Okay . . .

First, I don't say that guys and girls shouldn't be friends, I say that guys can't STAY "just close friends" with a girl and that guys don't become close friends with girls they don't find attractive.
Getting to know a guy better before you date him can be a really good idea, especially as a teen. You'll get to know him better by being nice and asking him sincere questions about himself, just like you would if you were dancing (there's a suggested list of questions in "Bro Jo's Guide to Casual Group Dating" ).
As for the foul language, there's nothing wrong with asking him to tone it down when he's speaking to you. Just be sincere, sweet (maybe even bat your eyes a little) and don't do it in front of his friends.

Secondly, you can't lecture your friend unless she asks your opinion.
Friends almost always chose romantic possibilities over their friends, if you lecture her she may see it as an attack, pick him over you, and then you'll not be able to help at all.
What you can do is, in subtle but not condescending ways, casually mention how and why you're choosing to wait until you're older.

Third, you're going to have to become color blind.
We're all God's children.
Even you.
And learn from these feelings.
Your experience is opening your eyes to what it must be like for others.
Make friends by being a good friend. 
Understand that there may be cultural differences that you can't necessarily relate to or overcome, but do your best to be understanding.
We all need the Gospel, and we all need each other.
Try selecting one or two particularly nice young women in your ward and get to know them better.
Kindness knows no color.

Usually the first part of the bridge needs to be built by those that want to cross it.


- Bro Jo

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