How can I solve this problem?

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-15-2004
How can I solve this problem?
Fri, 07-16-2004 - 8:28am
Here is the short version. For the last 3 yrs my husband and I were vaguely acquainted with a young man living in our town. He is a performer, and very kind and sweet. Last year my 10 year old daughter decided she really liked him and since then he has gone to dinner with our family a few times, a movie here and there, etc. Do not even raise an eyebrow, because she is never alone with him and never will be. We only socialize as family. His own family lives thousands of miles away.

About 9 months ago my daughter asked for his e-mail, phone #, and other info which he willingly gave. This was OK for a while, but this is a young man who is VERY focused on his career and nothing else. Although he professes to love our family and care about my daughter, things get very sticky when he CANNOT answer e-mails and does not respond to phone calls. This is never about her...only about how busy he is. But her feelings get hurrt. Then I feel llike a bad mom because I have "allowed" (?) things to evolve this way.

It's been a bad two weeks, because he is making great inroads in the music industry. My daughter is feeling very hurt and ignored. Actually, last week I even called him and said,"Should I tell her to back off a bit? Are you too busy for this?" He assured me that he wanted to be friends "forever" and he would make it up to her.

Last night she waited for him on line and when he arrived he was very preoccupied with stuff from work and she was upset because he hardly chatted, even when she wished him luck at his next gig, etc. I CAN DEAL WITH HER...I CAN ALWAYS COVER AND SAY "HE WAS JUST BUSY...DON'T TAKE IT PERSONALLY", but last night I found I was the one taking it personally...I guess because I have given him so many oppportunities to bow out gracefully, and he's assured me he will always have time for her.

My daughter would rather accept his "crumbs' and roll w/the disappointments than totally lose his friendship. She loves him as a big brother. WHAT SHOULD I DO? After last night I wrote him a letter saying all the things I said here, but I am afraid that if I give it to him, my daughter will lose her friend and be devastated. HELP!

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-12-1998
Fri, 07-16-2004 - 8:44am
This young man is not your son, nephew, cousin, family. He is just a nice young man that has endeared himself to you and it sounds like vice versa.

Please do not send him that e-mail. He sounds like a normal busy young man. He sounds like he likes you all, but obviously not preoccupied with you as a family or your daughter. It is now time to back off and leave him be.

I think you need to do him a favor and your daughter a favor by only allowing her to e-mail him once a month to say "hi". But I would explain to her that he is very busy and jsut because he doesn't respond doesn't mean he doesn't like her. I would pretty much let him be the one to initiate things at this point. Younger people (the guy) often do not have the maturity of years or the foresite to be honest and upfront. "I'm going to be so busy, let me contact you" It's easier to just say "hey, everything's cool, go ahead and e-mail me", but not really mean it. They are just trying to get out of an uncomfortable situation. Adults do this too.

If you start to make him feel guilty, then I can pretty much guarantee you that you sever this friendship. I hope this isn't too blunt. Good luck.


iVillage Member
Registered: 10-18-2003
Fri, 07-16-2004 - 11:00am
I would tell her she is only allowed to email him...not call him or I.M him.


iVillage Member
Registered: 06-08-2004
Fri, 07-16-2004 - 1:35pm

Hello and welcome!!

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-20-2003
Mon, 07-19-2004 - 4:00pm
I would have to agree with everyone else.

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