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Thoughts about teens, tweens, parenting and this adventure of living on Earth in the 21st century.

Annie Fox, M.Ed., is an internationally respected parenting expert, award-winning author, and a trusted online adviser for tweens and teens.

Desperately Seeking a (new) Boyfriend

March 10, 2010


Battered, broken, but still thumping

I got this email the other day. The girl who wrote it feels hurt and rejected because her boyfriend just dumped her. She’s flipping out a little so her idea of what’s going to solve her problem makes about as much sense as… well, why not just read it for yourself?

Hey Terra,

My boyfriend recently broke up with me (over the phone!) and I’m still really heart-broken and don’t know how to get over him. Also there’s this other guy who’s in the school play with me. I’ve liked him even before I started  going with my ex. On Saturday the play ends.  I probably won’t see him anymore after that so Saturday is my last chance to get things started with him. Should I tell him how I really feel even though we don’t know each other very well???

Desperate Dina

Hi Dina,

I understand how upsetting it is to have someone break up with you. You’re hurting. I get that. It’s normal to feel that when you’ve been rejected. But this is NOT the time to jump into a new relationship. You are way too vulnerable. And maybe even a little confused in your thinking. Going up to the guy in the play and telling him you like him is just… dumb. Don’t go there! You’re setting yourself up for another rejection. Give yourself a break from guys. You can do that, can’t you?

In friendship,

Hey Terra,

Thank You!! I listened to your advice and it made major sense… I guess I was just really upset about how my ex just up and broke up with me that I decided the only way I could heal is if I just went out and found someone new when the thing I really needed to do was take a long clear look at what it was I was really after… Someone who could replace my ex. Now I know that that’s NOT something I need to do and I am learning to acccept myself for who I really am…… although I really do struggle with low self esteem. How do you suggest a person builds up self esteem cuz I must say I am in desperate need!


Hey Dina,

You should be so proud of yourself. You totally got what I was saying and that tells me that you are open-minded, open-hearted and so ready to put yourself back in charge of your own life. Brava!!! Do you really think you are in “desperate need” of self-esteem? I don’t see it that way. You know exactly who you are, what’s right for you and what is not OK. That’s the definition of “self-esteem.”

In friendship,

Sometimes what we really need is a chance at a new relationship with ourselves.

Filed under: Parenting,Teens — Tags: , , , — Annie @ 9:52 pm


  1. I love to see girls being taught not to have their self-worth caught up in boys and having a boyfriend! Great post!

    Comment by Andye — March 10, 2010 @ 10:09 pm

  2. Thanks for tweeting this link to me. While at this point in my life this seems very straight forward, I know when I was younger, boys and being liked nearly defined my self esteem. I’m glad you were able to give her good advice and that she listened and exercised good judgment.

    Comment by KicksLikeAGirl — March 11, 2010 @ 2:21 am

  3. One thing I would suggest to Dina is that she should put herself in more situations to build up her own awareness of herself. Like doing more school plays or maybe taking a public speaking class if it’s offered.

    The stage is a great way to learn more about yourself and feel what it’s like to be vulnerable in front of people (an audience) in a safe way.

    I’d also suggest that with this new boy she focus on building a friendship. It’s not good to rush into anything romantically, but you can never have too many good friends!

    Comment by Tamaryn — March 11, 2010 @ 1:55 pm

  4. Hello Desperate Dina, My name is Jeff Rinek, and I read your posting because of a tweet I saw from Annie Fox. You can research my name to verify who I am and why I am writing you. First of all, I hate to hear you describe yourself as desperate. In my mind desperation reflects someone trying to chase the last pangs of hope. Usually those people are alone, with no one who cares. I can tell from Annie’s site that you are not alone, and people do care. It is important to understand that you assess yourself by two criteria. First, you consider your value, and secondly, you consider your responsibility. If you feel responsible for the breakup, don’t. If you feel the breakup reflects your value, again, don’t do that. The simple reality that you are on this site, trying to find help, and to factor considerations into your decision itself speaks to your value, and especially to your responsibility, in a great way. It doesn’t take a boy, or anyone else for you to believe in yourself. Believing in yourself comes from you, then you become the leader and others will follow. If you act as if you have no value, people will treat you accordingly. Responsibility means recognizing what you have done right, along with learning from your mistakes. Your search for advice, and personal reflection are all exemplary signs of value. The world is a wonderful place when you assume control over yourself and your environment. If you end up with a boy as a default, then your are simply settling for something less than you want, and that is not what you should be about. You deserve someone who has value to contribute to you, and who recognizes your value. Nothing less will work. Please value yourself, take care of yourself, realize that you have control and don’t have to settle for anything not reflecting your value. If you had a child would you want them to settle for something less. Would you give your child anything than was not the best. Treat yourself as you would treat a child. You are worth it. Sincerely, Jeff Rinek

    Comment by Jeffrey Rinek — March 11, 2010 @ 8:00 pm

  5. […] love author/educator Annie Fox’s advice for tweens – here’s a great response to one who felt hurt and rejected after a breakup and seems to have […]

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  6. […] I love author/educator Annie Fox’s advice for tweens – here‘s a great response to one who felt hurt and rejected after a breakup and seems to have […]

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