If you ask my teenage son what he’s most looking forward to about entering high school next year, he’ll tell you: GIRLS.
With a new braces-free smile, fresh undercut, and contact lenses on order, he’s working the accidental heartthrob vibe and loving every minute of it. But before my boy struts his perceived hot stuff down the fast-track to romance, there are some things he needs to know about girls that can only come from his once-girl mama:
1. “No” means no. “I’m not sure” means no. “OK, I guess … ” still means no.
You know what means yes? YES. A sober yes. But even a yes on her part requires rational thinking on yours.
2. Girls don’t want to be sexted. Like ever.
Sexting is creepy. Sexting is not romantic. Sexting will piss off all the wrong people. Don’t be that guy. You can do better.
3. Girls (and not just mom girls) like it when you’re clean.
If you can’t bring yourself to lather for me, for gross sake, lather for the ladies! I hate to smell you this, but clean counts.
4. Girls watch how you treat everybody.
And I mean errybody. From the popular kids and the not-so-popular kids to teachers, parents, friends, animals, and especially other girls, the young ladies are busy sizing up the man you are about to become. Be nice.
5. Girls make great friends.
A girl who is a friend does not necessarily a girlfriend make. Pursuing friendships with compassionate, loyal, and supportive females will be the best decision you ever make.
6. The girls in magazines aren’t real.
That angel in a centerfold isn’t real, she’s a perfectly Photoshopped fantasy. Real women come in all shapes and sizes. They have freckles, pimples, cellulite, body hair, crooked teeth, stretch marks, scars, natural hair, and about a million other qualities that make them beautiful and unique.
7. The best and brightest girls are often the shyest.
Fawn beyond the obvious choices because wallflowers are where it’s at. Remember: when it comes to a room, there’s quality in the corners.
8. Females are strong as hell.
Yeah, I know I stole that line from Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, but that’s only because it’s true. Girls are every bit as smart and strong and capable and talented as you are. Maybe even more. Know that.
9. Nice guys always win.
I know, I know, girls say they want a nice guy and then go for the jerks, but nice guys win in the end. Good attracts good. So if you’re looking for a good girl, you better be a good guy.
10. Hearts are fragile.
Remember what the King of Pop told you: “Be careful of what you do, don’t go around breaking young girls’ hearts. Eeeeee eeeee.” You’ll likely practice on a few hearts before you get it right, but do your best to stay gentle and kind. Every heart deserves that much.
11. Girls know.
Never underestimate a female’s ability to sniff out bullshit. She will hate the player and the game. And you might as well know now that her intuition grows ever stronger with age.
12. Girls talk.
Think you can act all shady to the ladies and get away with it? Think again, dear son. Your reputation is sure to precede you. Make it a good one.
13. Girls change their minds. A lot. About a lot of things.
I don’t really know what to say about that — no wait, yes I do: Learn to go with it because even if you don’t like it, it’s likely to change. Or not. But probably will. Eventually, anyway.
14. A girl is so much more than …
… how she looks or how good she makes you look. She is a person first.
15. Girls deserve …
- grammatically correct texts
- your full attention
- your very best manners
- your jacket when they’re cold
- to know the real you
- to have their door opened
- to be brought home on time (every single time)
16. Girls don’t deserve:
- bad breath
- aggressive behavior
- unsolicited advances
- pics of your naked anything
- kissing and telling
- anything your mama wouldn’t tolerate