Tag Archives: growing up

cary grant

Ask Weezy: If Cary Grant Had A Tumblr…

Was Cary Grant Gay, Straight, Bi or Tumblr-Sexual?

Question from Courtney F.

Hey Weezy, I’ve been questioning things lately (sexuality wise). I think I’m physically attracted to boys, but sexually attracted to girls. Would this make me bisexual?

Weezy

I am not sure. But what I am rapidly learning is that there are many new and emerging terms designed to help identify various sexual preferences. The Internet is serving as a magnetic force field that is pulling and aggregating people’s personal truths. Tumblr.com is on the front line of this revelatory movement. Here, for example, is one man’s Master List of Sexual Orientations.

My new belief is that there has always been this much diversity within humans and that the Internet is now allowing for more communication that promotes understanding and sharing and a sense of inclusion.

Many kids used to grow up feeling confused and “different,” so they would keep their feelings private and they would attempt to pry themselves into the least objectionable of two available boxes, labeled either Straight or Gay. They would situate themselves and their secret thoughts within that box, and they would carve out a life that often included a lot of lies and secrecy.

Since I began answering letters from teens six years ago, I have come to understand that things and people have never been that simple. It’s becoming increasingly clear that those of us who identify as straight or gay had far too easy a time telling other people that they had to pick a team.

But the tide is shifting and kids growing up today have a strong interest in allowing each other to identify in whatever way their natural inclination is inspiring them. New terms are springing up, and classifications can be everything from highly specific to very fluid depending entirely upon you and how you feel.

For example, right now I am reading Cary Grant: A Biography by Marc Eliot.

I used to believe that Cary Grant was probably a gay man pretending to be straight for the sake of his Hollywood career. I now think that he was either bisexual or bi-romantic or, choosing from the Tumblr list, maybe Androgynosexual.

He was married five times to five different women and was famously in love with Sophia Loren, so possibly, he was sexually attracted to men but romantically attracted to women? Only Grant knew for certain.

He probably would have had a very cool Tumblr page, but my point is that throughout his lifetime, he endured a lot of gossip and innuendo regarding his orientation, and it really just should not have mattered.

Click Here to read the rest of the column on Noozhawk.

worried_boy_by_opcrom-d38an2j

Penis Size – How Big Is It Supposed To Be?

Ask Weezy

Cover Art by Opcrom

Question from Caleb B. How big is your penis supposed to be when you are 11 years old? Weezy This is not exactly my area of expertise. There may be a range within which your size is considered “normal” at various ages but for that type of specific information, you will have to ask your pediatrician. I do know that there is no one size that your penis is supposed to be at age 11 or at any age. Keep in mind that every body grows differently and that everybody is different. Some kids may have started puberty by 11, some won’t start until age 13 or 15. Also, the size of your penis when flaccid will always be different than its size when erect. (This I learned from the movie, Lucas. Thank you, Corey Haim.) Kids are naturally very interested in learning how they measure up compared to their friends. I feel that one of our missions here on earth is to push past the physical distractions that compel us to judge ourselves and others based around appearance. The good news about penis size is that most people you encounter as you travel through life will never see your penis. And any woman who loves you enough to wish to be naked with you is going to be happy with the man that you are, regardless of any specific measurements. Ironically, it is mostly men and boys who notice and compare sizes. Women and girls are not exposed to as many penises (Pardon or do not pardon that pun. Your choice.) and they tend not to see penis size as the measure of a man. Rather, women will list all sorts of attributes, such as intelligence, kindness, integrity, humor, eyes, smile, shoulders, etc. as being important when choosing a partner. I am a woman and I can honestly tell you that… To read more, click over to my column on Noozhawk…

Our Place Out Loud Panel

Our Place Out Loud is Teens Helping Teens

Teens Helping Teens

Our Place Out Loud

Weezy, Nina, Will, Ryan, Nico, Jake, Montana and Kiemute

Every Tuesday night my home is invaded by teenagers.  Yes, they ring the doorbell.  Yes, I let them in.  Yes, I feed them and encourage them to come again, but the trauma is real and it’s weekly.

Our Place Out Loud – Show 195

Together we create a video podcast called Our Place Out Loud.  The show is an extension of the iOS app, Our Place which is a free download in the iTunes App Store.

About five years ago, I published a semi-autobiographical novel called Journals in the App Store.  We added an Ask The Author feature where I offered growing up advice to kids.  This evolved into the safe and friendly teen social network, Our Place.  The podcast brings that social network to real life as a panel of teens help me field questions that come into the app from around the world.

Our Place Out Loud

Nico, Will, Ryan, Montana, Kiemute, Ryan, Nico

 How does all of this come together weekly in my home? Well, first I go into a tiny coma and then A LOT of wonderful people help me pull it off.  The kids start arriving around 5pm.  And I love them but kids do not just arrive.  They arrive with backpacks and homework and noisy iDevices  and loud opinons about feminism, Internet freedom and the Zombie Apocalypse.  They arrive with an explosion of things, gear,  stuff and sneakers.  And they arrive hungry.

Our Place Out Loud – Show 194

Yes, they are very, very hungry and this is why Teresa also arrives. Mother Teresa? To me? Yes.  She feeds them, picks up after them and makes sure that the tall kitchen garbage bag remains snuggly in place around the tall kitchen garbage bin so that I do not spend the remains of my day hosing pizza goo out of the tall kitchen garbage bin.  God Bless Teresa.

opolmontagesamaaronweezy

Samantha, Kiemute, Weezy, Nina, Aaron

At 6pm, we open the mics and cameras for the “pre-show.” The narrowcast is pumped live into the Our Place app and this gives viewers a chance to peek behind the scenes as we set up.  There is often more than a bit of scrambling  (and hushed expletives) during pre-show as the technical heartbeat of Our Place Out Loud depends upon a delicately interwoven patchwork of winches, pulleys,  cords, cables, wires, tin cans, vacuum tubing and security cams.

Our Place Out Loud – Show number 193

But collective will has a way of working wonders and each week, we hit our stride and we shine.  By show time the studio is packed with  kids, grown ups, fun and wisdom all pulling together to share the universal experience of growing up.

The Our Place Out Loud kids are spectacular.  Their words and their hearts are helping scores of kids, parents, teachers, grandparents and lunch ladies worldwide.

Yes, it is more difficult to find parking on my street every Tuesday night.  Yes, the occasional sneaker is left behind.  Yes, it is challenging to remain cheery when somebody asks me if we have any Fanta Grape two minutes before showtime.  Come on! Isn’t that why Teresa’s here??  But I am so proud of our team and what we create together.

Take a look and listen.  We would love to hear your thoughts.

bullies_by_payero01-d4u03lv

Ask Weezy Highlights – Bullies Beware

by Louise Palanker

Cover Art by Payero01

I host a safe and friendly teen social network, ios app called Our Place. Each week, thousands of questions pour into the community. Kids share with one another and I personally respond to about 20 questions per day in a teen advice column called Ask Weezy. What are today’s kids thinking about? Here are this week’s top five questions.

Question 1
How do I deal with people saying negative comments about my appearance? Please don’t tell me “oh you’re beautiful.” You don’t know what I look like, and I already believe I am.

I just get frustrated because it’s not just what people say, it’s how they say it over and over and over… What do I say to make the bullies  stop? I’ve tried being mean, ignoring it, and getting other people on my side, but nothing works. Please help? Thank you so much.

Weezy
Almost everybody is picked on about their looks at some point along the road of life.

I don’t know what they are singling out regarding you, but generally speaking, what happens is that one kid notices something specific about your appearance and then everybody jumps on that bandwagon.

So, let’s say you have big feet. Oh well. You have big feet. I am not trying to dismiss the pain it causes you when somebody mentions your feet. Rather, I am encouraging YOU to take on that “Oh, well,” attitude.

My nephew Jake has great advice on this. He says that if somebody were, for example, to call him a geek, he would say, “And your point is…?”

I love this because it completely diffuses the intended impact of the insult. They are trying to get to you. If you simply agree and then ask why they have raised this point, the wind drops from their sails.

You say that you have tried everything and I completely believe you, but now try agreeing with them and asking them to clarify why they have time in their day to bring the obvious to your attention.

Question 2
Hey, weezy I live in a city that has no place to walk around. It sucks. The places it does have I’ve been to 100s of times. I’m not old enough to drive yet, but i want to do new things. Places to hang out and go. How do I find places in my area?

Weezy
Try googling, “teen activities” plus your area. You may be surprised to see how many churches, synagogues, mosques and non-religious organizations have events and clubs for teens.

Remember, that you do not have to join a religion to take part in a youth activity.

Also, try: Boys and Girls Clubs, The YMCA, The YWCA, Kiwanas, Elks and other service organizations.

For example, every Monday, I teach a free teen comedy class at the Jewish Community Center in Santa Barbara, CA. You would not know about it if you were not looking for teen activities in Santa Barbara.

So, do some hunting and let us know what you find.

Question 3
So last time i had a girlfriend was in 5th grade. I am now 17. I just moved to ****, Ga about 7 months ago and have been looking for a girlfriend but nobody seems to stick.

I’m always very quiet around people I don’t know. More so around girls. And when I do talk to a girl, I tend to overthink things, and think of everything that could go wrong. How can I become more confident? Plz help!

Weezy
You just need more practice talking to girls. Get this practice by conversing with many different girls. Exercise that muscle. Tell yourself that almost every girl with whom you speak will not become your girlfriend. They are mostly just friends.

Getting to know them enriches your life and theirs. Girls need practice talking to boys too, so these conversations are fun and helpful to all concerned.

The more you talk, the easier it gets and eventually, a connection will begin to form between you and somebody special. Don’t force it. Wait for it, be open to it and allow it to happen.

A relationship is not just something that you need. It is also something that you offer. You will be a gift to someone wonderful.

Question 4
I look like a guy and I’m shaped like one. What to do? Well I have broad shoulders and long arms that stop to my knees, seriously… I cross my arms so ppl wont notice it. I wear a sweatshirt so people wont notice my shoulders either and for summer I wear thin baggy sweaters. I was told about 2 times that look like a guy and told a million times I was ugly.  What should i do?

Weezy
You are not ugly and unless you want to look like a guy, you don’t look like a guy. You look like YOU, during your awkward, teenage years.

Dress in clothes that YOU like. Carry your arms in a way that feels comfortable and let Mother Nature take care of the rest. You are going to be just fine.

Question 5
Hi weezy! So today I got my period (not for the first time) and now it’s getting heavy.

I am a counselor at a camp this summer and am in the lake and water most of the day. When I have been inserting a tampon, I don’t feel it at all but my period still leaks. I don’t know what to do about it because I can’t wear a pad in the water! I don’t want my period to leak on my bathing suit that I am in most of the day! What should I do?

Thanks so much and sorry if this was a little gross :) Weezy

Weezy
Your period will only be heavy enough to leak through a tampon for about a day. Most girls just figure out how to get through that day and yes, it can be tricky if it’s a day spent on the water.

Some girls say, “I can’t swim today. Personal reasons.” Everybody just gets that. No more explanation is needed.

Some, may put a mini pad in their bathing suit. Sure it gets soaked with water, but it also sort of blocks leakage while you go from the water to the ladies room to swap out your tampon.

You will figure out what works for you. Always remember that every female gets her period. Don’t be shy about asking older counselors how they handle these situations.

Every month, you get a little bit better at strategizing around your period.

teen advice

Ask Weezy Highlights: Teen Advice – Sexting

Ask Weezy

Teen Advice by Louise Palanker

Cover Art by  KeeraKeera

I host a safe and friendly teen social network, ios app called Our Place. Each week, thousands of questions pour into the community. Kids share with one another and I personally respond to about 20 questions per day in a column called Ask Weezy. What are today’s kids thinking about? Here are this week’s top five questions.

Question 1

Ok. My best friend and I recently told each other that we like each other. We know that we feel the same way about each other. The slight problem is that if we date and we end up having a bad break up, it might mess up our friendship. And our friendship is so good. Is there a way we can work it out?

Weezy

No. There are no shortcuts around tough issues. With great risk comes great reward. What also comes is risk. But here is the way I look at it. In life, we must pay attention to the truth. Let it surface and look at. Say, “Hey truth. I see you. I acknowledge you and I will deal with you, come what may. Whenever you try to stuff down that truth, it festers and does all kinds of damage.

Let’s lay out some predicted outcomes based on your truth: The truth is that you like each other. So,

Scenario Number 1)

Ignoring that you like each other as more than friends in an effort to maintain your friendship. Well, it’s a lie that asks you to pretend something is not happening. So, in an effort to maintain your “friendship” you will both probably want to date others at some point. Those others will not tolerate this “friendship.” You will have now involved innocent people. You will not be with the one you truly love and you will be hurting each other and the people you are trying to date.

Taking this a step further, if one or both of you marry these other people, this will compound the problem and the number of innocents involved. Attempting to remain “just friends” may result in your loosing both the friendship and the romance and living your entire lives longing for each other and regretting your decision to remain “friends.” (Goggle Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles)

Scenario number 2)

You accept that you like each other as more than friends. You are both terrified, but you take this friendship up a notch to dating. It may work out. It may not But you will both get to experience a romantic adventure with a loving partner and for as long as it lasts, you will be learning from and growing with each other. This person may be the great love of your lifetime. Who is to say? If it does not last romantically and you loose the friendship, well, you lived your truths and you left an indelible mark on each other’s hearts. I vote for choice number 2. Live your truth.

Question 2

How do I ask my friend’s mom for feminine products? For the summer I’m staying over my friend’s house while my parents are out of town. Today I just started my period , I always kept a pad with me just in case it started cause I was told by my mom that I would start soon. Anyway, I only had one pad and I need more. IM SOO SCARED. I don’t know why, but it’s embarrassing ..my friend started hers so did her sister but I’m scared to ask any of them. btw its all girls in my friend’s household..

Weezy

The only embarrassment should be the embarrassment of riches in feminine products which inhabit that house. Ask your friend to ask her mom. There are loads of pads in any house full of females. The supplies you need are just a couple of steps away.

I know it feels embarrassing but it is actually very expected. Turn to your friend right this moment and say, “Aunt Flo just arrived and I need supplies.” Do it right now. Before you finish reading this post. Just look up and say that sentence, out loud…. OK, go ahead and whisper it….

Good for you. Now that’s done and somebody is going to get you pads. Have a great summer.

Question 3

I talk to a pervert and I regret everything. He asked me where I live. I said a state that’s far away from where I actually live. I told him a fake age, and my real first name. I also sent him a picture of me and my older sister. I made youtube videos then he messaged me on kik and we became closer. He complimented me and then asked for naked pictures. I sent him one but I wasn’t naked it was just my bum.

Our conversations usually always tend to have sexual stuff in them.. I don’t reply back sexually. I’ll try to change the subject.. He sent me a picture of him and he told me he was 26 but he looks older. I told him he looks like a rapist. He said, “I always point out the best in you, and you always point out the worst in me.” Please don’t tell me to tell my parents or the police.

Weezy

Respectfully, please don’t tell me what to tell you. This guy has an unhealthy, sexual interest in children, meaning, he is a pedophile. In speaking with you sexually online and requesting photos, he is breaking the law and he is dangerous.

Any child who posts content online and enters into a private conversations with a stranger is likely to run into somebody like this guy. The communication will begin with compliments and sharing how much you have in common. As he earns your trust and draws you in, he will begin to turn the conversation sexual. By this point, it is hard for the child to pull away because you may even believe that you are a little bit in love with him and that he values and understands you fully and completely.

This is how he operates. This is what he does. He’s been doing it for a long time and to a lot of children. He is probably not in his 20s and he probably is lying to you about any number of facts. He is probably speaking to a lot of girls and the moment he has enough information about you, he will be arranging to meet you. If you are too wise to allow for that rendezvous, another lonely girl somewhere is not. She will fall into his trap. You need to cease all contact with him. He is manipulating your mind.

STOP TALKING TO HIM. Tell your parents, call a helpline and call the police.

Question 4

Hi Weezy! This boy that I really like asked me for a picture of my boobs. I said no. He said he understood. Should I back away from him or is it ok for me to still like him? I told him I thought we had something together and he didn’t answer. He must have left because it made him uncomfortable… I just dunno.

Weezy

No. He left because you did not give him what he wanted. The only thing you have that he wants is your body. If anything else were the case he would be treating you with respect and trying to learn more about the person that is you. He would not be disrespecting you by

a) asking you to do something crass and humiliating and

b) asking you to do something that lives on the internet forever.

You may be thinking, “But nobody will know they are my breasts.” YOU will know. You will know that you did this in the hope that on the other side of this exchange would lie love. You would then learn the hard way that quite the opposite is true. On the other side of this exchange lies you hurt and feeling used, vulnerable and exposed. You will never know how many people were forwarded that photo.

Has this boy stopped talking to you because he felt “uncomfortable?” I hope so, but I doubt it. He’s gone because you are a young lady with dignity and self esteem. He is off to prey upon girls who have yet to embrace these qualities. He is doing so because he has no dignity or respect for himself or others. He has a long way to go to catch up to you. Please look for love in the eyes of somebody who is not afraid to really see YOU.

Question 5

Last year this guy (my neighbor) and I hung out all summer. I began to like him and then he tells me that he’s going to my school and will be in my grade. I was really happy. He was flirting with me and making my crush bigger.

But then when school started, he talked to me less. After a month of this I decided to just stop taking to him and a week later he noticed and asked me why I wasn’t talking to him and I said I don’t know and walked away.

I have ignored him (and he has ignored me also) for like 8 months now and I miss talking to him.  How do I get him to talk to me again?

Weezy

You gave him a false answer. You do know why you weren’t talking to him but you claimed that you didn’t. You had made your point. He noticed, and when he asked you why you hadn’t spoken to him, the productive answer would have been, “I know. I miss you. What’s been happening? Catch me up.”  This would have invited conversation.  Instead, you shut him down.

This sort of pattern tends to repeat itself between men and women so pay careful attention to what you did right and what you could do better.

A guy who likes you will definitely notice if you start ignoring him. And, when he notices, you may still be hurt and angry and you may be hoping that he says EVERYTHING you need to hear that will make you feel appreciated once again. Well, he won’t say everything. You need to steer that conversation.

He may say something, which is what you got. But if you make him feel badly for saying something, he’ll lick his wounds and walk away.

If, on the other hand, you say something inviting and he starts talking to you again, when the moment is right, you can then say, “Hey, I felt kind of hurt when you started school and it seemed like you were too busy for me.”

That is your truth. That is what happened. Don’t expect guys to know exactly what you are feeling. They don’t know unless you tell them. And in order to tell them, you need to pleasantly re-open conversation.

So, here we are eight months later and you now have some work to do. Walk up to him and say, “I miss talking to you. What’s been going on?” If he is open to that, then down the line, you can tell him the truth about why you shut down.