Freaking out about a crush problem? Major drama in school? Bratty little sister driving you crazy? No worries! I’m here to help! Tell me what’s up and I’ll give you the best advice I can. Just ask Chloe and Zoey…I’m awesome at giving advice!! You can send your question to AskNikki@dorkdiaries.com. I’ll try to answer a couple each week, depending on how much homework I have!
Today’s advice question comes from Emily, who writes:
My crush never talks to me and, short of a major miracle, he probably never will. I mean, he likes me and he invites me to his birthday party, but whenever I ask him to go roller skating or to the movies, he always says no. What should I do?
Hi Emily! Let me just start by saying that you’re my hero! Seriously, it’s totally cool that you ask your crush to go places.
For the longest time, whenever I tried to ask Brandon to hang out, it went a little something like this:
“Hi Brandon! So I was thinking of going to see a movie this weekend. Want to…um…want to…have a piece of gum? I, um, have nine pieces left in my pack.”
But you…you’re a pro. Your crush, on the other hand, he’s got issues!
Still, they may not be the issues you think. It seems like he’s into you, but he’s not into going out alone. And it could be for a few different reasons.
1. He likes you, but he doesn’t LIKE YOU like you. He invites you to his birthday party because you’re a cool girl, but he doesn’t look at you and think, “I CAN’T WAIT to skate holding hands with her!”
2. He’s into you, but he’s shy/scared. He may even DREAM of holding your hand at the roller skating rink, but he’s afraid he’ll get palm sweat all over you if he does, because he gets THAT nervous just thinking about it.
3. He doesn’t really have any opinion about you (because he never talks to you, so he doesn’t REALLY know how awesome you are). But for some reason his mom makes him invite you to his birthday party. (The good news in this scenario: SHE’S really into you!)
Since I still haven’t perfected my mind reading device, I don’t know what his deal is, but I do know there’s only one way to find out: ask him what’s up!
You’re clearly not a shy girl, so I say go for it! Next time you ask him to go to the movies, if he says no, ask straight out, “Why not?”
If you’re feeling REALLY brave, you could follow that with:
“Not into the movies? Not into going out on the weekends? Not into…me?”
Then he pretty much has to answer! Keep in mind he may not be brave enough to tell you the truth.
If he turns pink, starts breathing heavily, and glances up and down from your face to his feet, it’s probably my second guess. (He’s into you, but WAY too nervous to go out alone!)
In this case, smile a HUGE smile inside and say, “No worries. Maybe some other time.” And there will be another time. A boy with a crush can’t stay away forever!
If he gives you some lame excuse, like “I would go, but I’m, um, well, I’m probably going to be sick this weekend,” then he’s probably not worth your time.
In this case, take your awesome “not afraid to ask your crush out” skills to some other boy who’s far more worthy!
What do you guys think? Have any advice for Emily?
This question comes from Jodie, who writes:
I have this HUGE lying problem. When I start, I just can’t stop myself! We’re not even halfway through the school year and I’ve lied to a teacher twice because I tried to save myself from punishment.
Afterwards, I feel really guilty so I confess and apologize. Now it’s super awkward between my teacher and me. I feel a surge of panic whenever she walks by. How do I stop lying so I can stop feeling embarrassed?
Hi Jodie! I know this might seem crazy since you just admitted you lie pretty much all the time, but I think you’re kind of awesome!
Want to know why? Well, for one thing, you’ve ADMITTED that you have a lying problem. Most liars don’t do that because they’re SO used to lying that they even lie to themselves.
And as for confessing and apologizing, that’s pretty cool too!
I know some people who never confess that they lied, even when it’s SUPER obvious. (Here’s a little visual for you: Brianna. Chocolate-covered lips. Innocent face. Words coming out of her mouth: “I didn’t even LOOK at the cake!”)
So the first piece of advice I want to give you is: tell yourself you’re awesome, and know that you’re not lying about it!
As far as kicking the lying habit, it sounds like your real problem is that you’re scared of being punished.
It might help to remind yourself right before you’re about to tell a lie that the guilt you feel is actually WORSE punishment…and so is that awkward feeling after you confess.
And then when you admit that you lied (which you know you will), you’ll STILL get punished!
If this feels really hard to remember when you’re about to lie, practice saying nothing instead. It’s not the truth, but it’s better than lying!
Then, if your teacher or parent or whoever pushes you, you can say something like, “One second…I’m trying to find the right words!”
(I do this all the time with my mom, and I know she thinks, “That’s my little writer!” when really she should be thinking, “That’s my little liar trying to psych herself into telling the truth!”)
About this teacher issue, all you need to do is visit her after school and say, “I feel pretty embarrassed about lying. I guess I was just afraid I’d get in trouble, but I’ve learned a valuable lesson, and I know I won’t be lying anymore!”
Teachers LOVE to hear “valuable lesson.” You could yell BLAH BLAH BLAH in the middle of the class while the teacher’s talking, and it would probably be all good if you learned a valuable lesson!
If that seems too scary for you, then you could write the same thing in a note.
And if that seems scary too, maybe it will help to realize you are FAR from the first person to lie to get out of punishment. It’s practically in the kid handbook…we ALL do it every now and then!
So being embarrassed about that is pretty much like being embarrassed for having a face. As long as you’re working on it, I think you should be proud!
What do you guys think? Do you have any advice for Jodie?
IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT: Want to meet Rachel, the nice lady who put my diaries together? If you’re in Savannah, Georgia on Saturday, November 16th, you can!
She’ll be making a special appearance at the Savannah Children’s Book Festival at Forsyth Park from 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM and from 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM.
FREE Dork Diaries posters, stickers, bookmarks, and sneaker key chains will be given out while supplies last! Rachel and her two daughters, Erin and Nikki, are really looking forward to meeting YOU!
Now onto today’s advice column…
Today’s question comes from Rachel, who writes:
My two BFFs, Aimee and Flora, act really awkward around each other. Whenever I hang out with them one at a time, Aimee goes off with this girl named Kaya, who is WAY too loud and gabby for my personality.
I’ve lost friends before by being possessive, and I don’t want it to happen again. But whenever I hang out with Aimee, Kaya says, “Aimee is MY best friend!” and then she gives me an evil stare.
My only other option is to hang out with Flora, which is really fun, but I don’t want to lose Aimee. What should I do?
Hi Rachel! I totally feel for you, because it sounds like you’re dealing with a TON of intense friendship drama. I got exhausted just reading about it!
Let me just say that your BFFs are lucky to have you because you sound like an AWESOME friend to have, especially since you learn from your past friendships.
Kaya, on the other hand, didn’t get the memo that it’s SO not cool to be possessive. She might as well just pee in a big circle around Aimee, like a dog marking its territory…that’s how RIDICULOUS she’s being!
I know it would be awesome if Aimee and Flora became BFFs too, so the three of you could always hang out together and you wouldn’t have to worry about Kaya butting in and being all mean and jealous.
But really, all you can do is tell your friends how you feel and then let everyone be friends with whoever else they want to be friends with.
I mean, it COULD be that Aimee and Flora are weird around each other because they both want to be your main BFF…but maybe they just don’t click.
If I were you, I’d sit them down separately and say something like, “You’re one of my favorite people in the whole world, and I’d love it if you got to know my other favorite person. You’re both so awesome that I think for sure you’d love each other if you spent some time together!”
Then if they say yes, invite them over together to do something fun one day after school. Just be prepared…they could really hit it off, and then YOU could feel like Kaya!
If that doesn’t work out, then you really have no choice but to hang out with them separately. Don’t worry, though. If they’re REALLY your friends, you won’t lose either of them to some loud, gabby girl.
It would take A LOT more than an evil stare to break apart a true friendship!
What do you guys think? Do you have any advice for Rachel?
Today’s question comes from Abby, who writes:
My parents are sort of confusing, like they’ll allow us to buy books, but weeks later they’ll say, “Why don’t you read or sell your books first? You have too many books!”
Also, I have to do multiple chores, all at the same time! For example, my mom will ask me to hang the clothes on the clothesline, and then I’m rushing to make my baby sister stop crying. And when our dog has accidents in the house, I’m supposed to clean them up.
My parents ask for so many favors that my back aches, and I sometimes blurt out in annoyance, “Can’t you see I’m busy?!” What should I do?
Hi Abby! Before you read this, grab a soda, put on your fuzzy slippers, and kick back for a bit, because it sounds like you need a break!
I totally get how annoying it is to have to do a ton of different chores, especially when it’s not even for more allowance or anything.
I’d rather clean toilets at McDonalds…at least then I’d get PAID!
It sounds like your parents might have some money stresses of their own. I mean, think about everything they’ve said to you.
They buy you books because they’re good parents and want you to eventually be able to get a better job than, well…cleaning toilets at Mickey D’s! But then they tell you to sell your books (I’m guessing when you ask them to buy you more stuff).
AND they ask you for all kinds of help with chores.
They’re probably exhausted from taking care of a new baby, and even though they work jobs too, they’re STILL strapped for cash, which is why they’re asking for so much and being so confusing.
I know it doesn’t make it any easier to feel like their one-woman nanny/housekeeping crew, but maybe it will help to think about where they’re coming from.
Then you can sit them down and sound super mature when you say, “I know you both work really hard and that having a new baby isn’t easy, but sometimes it’s stressful to have to do a lot of different chores at once. Could you maybe make a list of things I need to do, and then once I’ve done them, give me a little time and space to do my own stuff?”
I think this is TOTALLY reasonable! This way, you’re not saying you won’t help out…you’re just saying that sometimes you need them to cut you some slack when you’re busy with your homework, or other super important things, like Skype chatting with your friends!
I bet if you show them that you see where they’re coming from, they’ll be much more likely to do the same for you!
What do you guys think? Do you have any advice for Abby?
Today’s question came in anonymously. It reads:
My friend is having a birthday party at a hotel (pretty cool!) and she invited me, along with some others, to stay for the night. Her mom and dad are going to be there for the whole time.
I already asked my mom and it’s fine with her, but I have a terrible feeling that my dad is going to say no. I think my dad is really overprotective. He won’t even let me go to the movies with my friends. How can I convince him to let me go to this party/sleepover?
Hi there! I’m so sorry to hear about this super stressful sleepover situation.
It seems that your dad’s trying to look out for you, but it totally stinks that he’s overprotective like that.
Clearly he doesn’t realize that, for girls, going to the movies with friends is like golfing in ugly plaid pants for Dads…WAY up there on the list of fun things to do!
I know you’re trying to plan in advance in case he hears the word “hotel” and spazzes out, but the reality is you haven’t actually asked him yet. AND your mom’s on your side. That’s huge!
There’s nothing worse than TWO parents saying no together. You’re more likely to get to a party by a pumpkin carriage from your fairy godmother than find a way there when BOTH parents say no.
So here’s what I think you should do: Sit your mom down and tell her how much you appreciate that she trusts you to have fun at this party without doing anything wild and crazy, like getting a tattoo or trying to jump into the pool from your balcony.
(Actually, skip the examples…she might actually change her mind when she hears that stuff!)
Then tell her how much you wish your dad would trust you too, and ask her if she’ll stand by your side when you ask him for permission.
This way, you don’t have to whine, “C’mon, Dad! Mom said it’s okay!” Instead, she’ll be standing right there next to you and she’ll have your back the whole time.
If he STILL says no, you could ask him to let you go for some of the party to prove that you can handle it.
I know, it would be WAY cooler to actually stay overnight (since that’s the whole point of having a party at a hotel!), but maybe if you show him how mature and responsible you are, he’ll start letting you do more stuff.
Oh, and one more tip: He might say something like, “I trust you. It’s everyone else I don’t trust!”
You could say something super clever like, “I hear you, Dad. We live in a scary world! But a girl has to learn to handle different situations and people, don’t you think? And how else can we learn if not through experience?”
(I got that from Zoey…probably from self-help book or something!)
I hope this helps and you get to go to the party…or at least some of it!
What do you guys think? Do you have any advice for our new friend?
Today’s advice question comes from Sara, who writes:
I have a friend named Madison and she has a crush on a boy named John. Madison and I were playing some Facebook games when I received a text message from him. He said that he has a crush on me!
Madison was obviously hurt and I could tell she was jealous. The next day at school, she couldn’t even face me or talk to me. I want to tell her that John and I aren’t in that sort of relationship, but she keeps avoiding me. What should I do?
Hi Sara! I’m so sorry to hear about what happened with Madison. It sounds like you’re a really good friend since you’d never even THINK about crushing on someone she’s into.
The good news is that I doubt she’s mad at you. I mean, it’s not like you did something totally uncool and wrong, like text John, “I like you too! Let me just ditch Madison and I’ll be right over. And by the way, she’s OBSESSED with you!”
I bet she’s avoiding you because she feels jealous, sad, hurt, and a ton of other confusing emotions.
I mean, she likely gets why he likes you. She’s your friend…she knows how awesome you are!
But she’s probably wondering why he doesn’t like her. She may even wonder if there’s something wrong with her or if you’re better than her in some way.
So here’s what I think you should do:
If she keeps avoiding you so you can’t talk to her in person, send her an email or Facebook message that includes two things: something to make her feel more secure about your friendship, and something to help her feel more secure about herself.
For the first part, you could write something like:
“I can’t believe John even texted me! I would never even THINK about crushing on someone you like because your friendship is super important to me!”
This way, you let her know it’s you and her with John on the outside, not you and John with her being left out!
Then for the second part, you could write something like:
“I think John would be totally into you if he knew you like I do. You’re so awesome because….”
Then list a bunch of cool things about her. (Stuff about her personality…nothing like, “Your hair’s always so shiny!” or “You NEVER smell bad, not even after gym!”)
If she’s been feeling down on herself, this will remind her that she’s amazing AND let her know that she’s totally crush-worthy, even if John doesn’t know it!!
Then at the end, you could write something like:
“But enough about boys! Want to do something fun tomorrow?”
This way you remind her that it’s sisters before misters, and that’s how it’s going to stay!
What do you guys think? Do you have any advice for Sara?
Today’s question comes from Chloe (a different one!) who writes:
My friend freaks out if I don’t text her every five minutes. Since I have music lessons, I can’t text her after school. But if I don’t, the next day at school she gets super angry and doesn’t talk to me. I want to tell her that I am sometimes too busy to answer her texts, but I’m afraid she’ll get angrier. What should I do? HELP!!
Hi Chloe! This sounds like a super tricky situation because it’s your friend, and you want her to know she’s important to you…but she’s being kind of clingy and unreasonable!
Since there’s a lot of stuff I don’t know, I’m going to offer a few ideas about what might be going on here.
1. She has nothing going on after school, she’s SUPER bored, and she just doesn’t get that you can’t always drop your clarinet (or whatever you play!) to text her back INSTANTANEOUSLY.
2. She’s not comfortable doing her own thing, so she texts you 24/7 to feel like you’re with her, even when you’re not.
3. She’s addicted to technology, and since her fingers feel naked when they’re not covered by her phone, she assumes you’re tech-obsessed too.
Unless you’ve also been taking mind-reading lessons after school, you can’t really know what’s up unless you ask her. So here’s what I think you should do:
Sit her down some time and ask her why she gets so mad when you can’t text her back right away. Tell her that her feelings are really important to you, so you want to understand!
Then tell her that even though her friendship means a lot to you, you just can’t be available by phone all the time.
And it’s not just her… you can’t text ANYONE during certain times. You literally can’t write to someone while you’re playing your violin (or whatever you play!).
After that, set some ground rules. Tell her what times you’re busy; tell her any rules your parents have for you (like, if you can’t text while you’re doing your homework)…basically, explain everything that might make her angry.
Then let her know that if you don’t get to text back and forth all afternoon, that just means you’ll have more stuff to talk about later.
And here’s the most important part: if you tell her you’ll call or text her after your music lesson or whatever, make sure you do!
This way she’ll know you meant what you said…you’re not just trying to blow her off because you’re secretly texting other friends that you like a whole lot better!
What do you guys think? Do you have any advice for Chloe?
Today’s question comes from Danie, who writes:
I have two annoying cousins, an eight year old and a four year old. They always break my stuff, and they always bother me. One time, when my sister and I were eating breakfast downstairs, I forgot to put my favorite lip gloss in my make-up kit.
When I went back into my room, I saw it broken in half. My closet was open and my cousin was playing with my powder on the floor. I was so angry I got red and screamed at them, and then they ran downstairs.
When I followed them, I saw them crying. They told their parents and mine that I had hurt them. I tried to tell them that they ruined my stuff and were lying, but they didn’t believe me. Instead, they told me to get in my room and think about what I had done. What should I do?
Hi Danie! I’m sure this is TOTALLY frustrating, but have no fear…an annoying little kid expert is here!
I can’t even count how many times Brianna has touched stuff I told her was off limits, broken other things, and lied about me to my parents.
Sometimes I wonder if she’s possessed or something, because one minute, she’s all syrupy sweet, and then BAM! Instant brat!
In my six years of dealing with my tiny terror sister, I’ve learned three great tactics for dealing with incidents like this.
1. Hold onto the evidence! So your cousins broke your lip gloss AND were playing with powder on your floor.
You could have grabbed the broken lip gloss to show everyone when you went downstairs…OR you could have grabbed your phone and snapped a picture of your cousins playing with powder in your closet.
Moms are WIRED to care WAY too much about home stuff, like floors and rugs…so even if she didn’t care about your broken lip gloss, that powder pic could have gone a long way to support your cause!
2. Catch them in the act! Instead of using your phone to take pictures of the cousin crime scene after the fact, you could set up a video camera in your room (or have a web cam on when they’re over).
This way, when they’re all “Danie hit us!” you can say, “Actually, if you refer to Exhibit B, you’ll see extensive video footage proving BEYOND DOUBT that I did no such thing!”
Once your cousins are caught lying, they’ll be like the boys who cried wolf when they try to pull it again!
3. Plead your case! If you can’t use technology in any way, then use the only tool you have…the power of persuasion!
Find a time when your cousins aren’t over to sit your parents down and set them straight.
Remind them of your amazing track record of NOT hurting people physically. If it’s totally out of character for you to do that kind of thing, odds are they’ll believe you when they’re not all caught up in the drama of your cousins’ tears.
You can also ask them what THEY would do if someone went into their room…uninvited…and broke their stuff. This way, they’ll have no choice but to put themselves in your shoes and realize how much it stinks!
What do you guys think? Do you have any advice for Danie?
This question comes from Lea, who writes:
There is this boy who expressed his feelings for me in front of our whole class. I was super embarrassed about it and decided to tell him I don’t like him, but when I went to talk to him he gave me a gift. Now everyone is pairing us up together, even though I like someone else. How can I say no to him without breaking his heart?
Hi Lea! This sounds like kind of a tricky situation. On the one hand, you’re not into this boy at all. On the other hand, he’s SO super sweet that he actually bought you a gift!
And I bet it’s even tougher to let him down with everyone being all “Lea and gift boy sitting in a tree…”
In coming up with advice, I tried to think about how I would feel if EVERYONE was telling me that Brandon and I would make an awesome couple, and I bought him a gift, but he wasn’t into it at all.
Here’s my advice based on what I’D want if I were in gift boy’s shoes…
Find a time when you can talk to him alone…some time when he won’t have to see other kids right afterwards. This way, if he’s upset, no one else will see!
(Not saying he’s going to cry or anything, but you never know…and why add a lifetime of teasing to the bruised ego he’s going to have after you two talk?)
Maybe you can ask him to talk to you after school, before you both go home.
When you see him, say something like this:
“Hey there ______________ (insert his name). That was SO sweet of you to give me ______________ (insert gift).
I think you’re really awesome because ______________ (insert genuine compliment…nothing lame like “You always raise your hand first in history!”)
And I’d really like to be friends because ______________ (insert some observation about why he’d be a great friend, but only if you DO want to be friends! If not, skip to the next part.)
About all the stuff other kids have been saying: I know everyone thinks we should be paired up because we’re both so awesome, but I actually have a crush on someone else.
I just wanted to let you know because…well, like I said I think you’re awesome and you deserve to know what’s up. If you want the ______________ (insert gift) back, I understand.
And if you want to tell everyone else we BOTH decided to be friends, that’s cool with me.”
This way, you let him down easy, you let him know you appreciate the gift without making him feel dumb by trying to give it back (but you let him know he can have it back if he wants), AND you give him the option to save face in front of the class.
That’s what I would do, and that’s what I’d HOPE someone else would do if I were gift boy…well, gift girl!
What do you guys think? Do you have any advice for Lea?
Today’s question comes from Hannah, who writes:
I have this huge crush on someone in my class. One night, on Facebook, he wrote something with one word misspelled. I teased him and said that he got the word wrong. Then he got angry with me, and we had a HUGE argument.
The next day at school he wouldn’t even talk to me. And I hated it. That night, I chatted with him on Facebook and told him I was sorry. He said “okay,” but the next day, he said he didn’t accept my apology. I got angry with him and we started fighting again.
I feel guilty. I want to be friends with him, but every time I approach him, my legs turn to jelly. What should I do?
Hi Hannah! As a total diary-writing dork, I ABSOLUTELY get why you pointed out the spelling mistake. I do stuff like that all the time. (I’m like a human spell check!)
It stinks that he’s being so dramatic about this. It’s not like you handed him a deodorant and said, “This will help with that cat pee smell coming from under your arms!”
I mean, I get why he felt embarrassed at first. No one likes making mistakes or feeling dumb! But you apologized, so now it’s over!
Unless what you ACTUALLY said was, “I’m sorry for pointing out that you’re stupid! Truce?” there’s no good reason why he shouldn’t let it go and move on!
Here’s what I would do if I were you. I’d try one more time to smooth things over with a cute, funny Facebook message, something like:
“I hate that where fighting over a word. Your such a good freind. Can we make up?”
There are three spelling mistakes in there. (Okay, two aren’t actually spelled wrong…just used wrong. There’s that inner writing dork coming out again!)
Maybe after reading this he’ll be able to laugh at the whole situation so you guys can go back to the way things were!
If not, maybe it would be best to stop talking to him for a bit so he has some time to think the whole thing through.
I’m sure he’ll get over it when he realizes he misses chatting with you. And if he doesn’t, this misspelled word may be a blessing in disguise…because you deserve friends who would NEVER ditch you over something as silly as that!
What do you guys think? Do you have any advice for Hannah?
Do you have a question for Nikki?