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I need some advice from all ages please !

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
OK, first think back to the time in your life when you were around 10-18 years old (yeah, some of you are still there, I know). If you're like me, you had someone in school, church, family or some association that you looked up to a lot. I had a couple of those, some treated me like an equal and some would have nothing to do with me. My problem is this, I have been made aware in the past couple of months that a young lady in our church(she's 15 going on 10) looks up to me in this manner. I really don't know what to do, I don't want to ignore her, but I had a hard time relating to children when I was a child, like Sam, I was an old soul in a young body. Any advice out there for me on things I can do for/with her, to be a good role model for her? I'm used to being "in the spotlight" as I am our church pianist and have been since I was nine, but this is on a more personal level than I am used to ! If anyone has any ideas for me, let me know, I'll definitely take them to heart. And Sam, if you read this, let me know your thoughts on it too. Thanks in advance everyone, I've got faith that you won't let me down !
post #2 of 13
What an interesting position you are in! I don't have any ground breaking advice, but does this girl speak to you? I know that sometimes just having an "adult" to talk to who will listen is a great help. A lot of times, teenagers need an adult who will listen and give advice (if it's wanted) but is not the teenagers parent.

I know that was the case with me. When I was a teenager I would take advice from adults but if I got the exact same advice from my parents, I didn't want to hear it.

I would just tell you to listen to her and she will probably give you an idea of what she might be looking for.
post #3 of 13
How about getting involved with her and your cats?

I have a similar problem with my 13 year old neice. I love her to death, but I'm just not comfortable with her at that age. I too was always "grown up" and mature for my age. So, one of our bonding things is that she comes over and spends time with me and my foster kitties. She helps me groom them (even though they don't need it), clean up and just socialize with them. We can both sit in the cat room and talk without looking directly at eachother and becomming uncomfortable.

I've always felt that the best place to talk was in a car because you could talk without making eye contact. Generally that is what makes people uncomfortable.

post #4 of 13
Hi Cindy. I can relate to this in a small way!.

A really closed friend, who i have known for 14 years has a son and daughter.

Her daughter from the age of 7, always looked up to me and still does.

Louise would love the fact that i wore makeup and nail varnish, where as her mum never.

And although Louise can talk to her mum about things,e.g. sex etc.., Louise has confided in me on a lot of issues.

So if it's similar to mine, i think it's lovely that she can have someone to look up to.

post #5 of 13
Having belonged to a mentoring program in the past, the first thing you want to do is find out what the girl is interested in. The best way to break the ice is to present the girl with a small gift. For example, the last girl I mentored was the product of a home that defied description. Horrible abuse within the home- and they didn't even live in a whole home- just a three sided cabin tarped over. She escaped by writing, so I gave her a journal and a pen and we were on our way. I took her to the mall (she had NEVER been to a mall!) Could you even imagine? Mom was psychotic, and so was Dad. We got her involved with helping us plant our garden and with our animals.
post #6 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thanks, guys, keep 'em coming!! She has a cat of her own, she and her brother live with their grandmother because their mom refuses to take responsibilty for them ( she's about 2 years older than me). They are related to me on my dad's side, a cousin I think. I just would hate to pass up the opportunity to be a good influence in someone's life !
post #7 of 13
Treat her as an equal and not as a child. Her looking up to you probably means that she would like to be like you or possibly (in some ways) already is. I would guess that’s why she’s interested in getting to know you. Maybe she is an “old soul†too. So just be yourself.
post #8 of 13
I can't relate to that, but I can relate to the fact of not knowing how to deal with children even when I was one.

I don't know if I ever had anyone look up to me that was younger then I.

Good luck with that.
post #9 of 13
Cindy- , How lovely of you to have someone that looks up to you, I have a few people and that I look up and the reason is I love their warmth and friendleniss, like I know this special lady and I could talk to her whenever I want about anything and she would understand(she's my nanas best friend and she breeds cats, so we do have some things in common), Maybe if you just offer to her that you can talk at anytime or if she ever needs a shoulder, I'm sure she would love to know that you would be there for A gift would be lovely but not essential , Does she live near you? Maybe you could invite her over to see your himmi's or something ..?

Good luck!
post #10 of 13
I also think being friendly is the key. Not to look down on her because of her age but treat her like an equal. I used to do that with the soldiers in my units (mostly girls ages 18-19) and I was the most popular officer for that (yes - we had polls ). I always believed them and was nice and considerate and I felt they paid me by trying to work harder and show that they really were trustworthy (which they were). I still keep in touch with some of them.
post #11 of 13
I think you should just be friendly towards her, mabye initiate a conversation every now and then. How nows, mabye you'll love her personality. The only person I ever looked up to was Luke Skywalker! he is a pretty good role model though.

post #12 of 13
I'm 23 and I'm heavily involved in a volunteer mentoring program for high school students. Before this, I was forever in the spotlight as a high achiever. So even when I was a child myself, I've had people look up to me.

Be friendly and genuine. If you can't answer a question, admit to it and try to find the answer together. Before anyone opens up to you, a common thread needs to be found. And as always, when someone opens up to you, it can be an emotional roller-coaster ride.

Like Sam said, a gift isn't essential. She may just be happy knowing that you are there for her. Treat her like an equal and don't judge her actions. Offer advice when it's asked for.

And above all, remember this if nothing else. Be yourself. You must be doing something good and right for someone to choose you as a role model. There is no need for you to change your behaviour just because you now know that someone looks up to you.
post #13 of 13
just be her friend. i have a person that looks up to me and she is my age and she is mental
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