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Harker Heights Evening Star
Harker Heights Evening Star

Damaged Goods

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Sue Ellen Jackson

Parents Corner


Dear Sue Ellen,

My daughter is going to be a senior in high school this fall.  She has her future planned, but her boyfriend is damaged goods and I think he will break her heart and destroy her dreams.  I am going to do everything I can to keep them apart..  Would you like to help me?

D.M. (Determined Mom)

Dear DM:

Yes, I would like to help you, but perhaps not the way you may think.  Here are some things I won’t do:  I won’t help you set a bear trap for your daughter’s boyfriend and release him in the wild.  I won’t enlist him in the military by disguising myself as an unruly teenage boy and forging his name on the dotted line.  I won’t poison him or remove any body parts.  I probably wouldn’t throw shoes at him and yell at him to leave and never come back.  I won’t bribe your daughter by offering to give her one million dollars and clean her bathrooms for the rest of my life if she will dump him.  I probably wouldn’t call his mother or start a rumor that he is an alien from a distant galaxy or Iceland.

How does a person deal with damaged goods?  If you are the only person involved in a toxic relationship, the best thing to do is walk away and don’t look back.  When someone you love is trapped in a bad relationship what can you do?  Would you slam the front door in your daughter’s face and tell her not to come back until she dumps the no-good boyfriend?  No.  Would you suck it up and get the doctor to put you on high blood pressure, depression and anxiety medications while you pretend everything is okay?  No.  Please don’t do that.

You hate the boyfriend.  I get that; but apparently your daughter sees him differently.  Have you discussed your concerns with your daughter?  Of course, she is going to blow you off, but she might ponder what you say; most teenagers DO listen to their parents (but they don’t want them to know it).  Your daughter is still under your roof, so setting some reasonable limits is a good thing.  Approach your daughter with a loving heart and willingness to listen to her side.  Offer her realistic consequences of her choice to stay in relationship with her boyfriend.

I wish there was a special island where naughty boys and stupid girls could go and live until they learn how to be adults and make responsible decisions.  When I was your daughter’s age, I would have been a good candidate for such a place. Somehow, I managed to muddle through and ended up being an okay adult (I guess) after making a lot of serious mistakes.  All the time I was being stupid I knew my parents loved me and would help me if I needed it.  That is probably one of the main things that helped me through.

Love never gives up.   No matter what, be there for your daughter.

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