DEAR ABBY: I am 15 years old. I have a pretty easy life except for one thing: My mom hates the way I dress.
I don't wear all the girly stuff my mom wants me to because it is too prissy for me. I wear pants made for guys and T-shirts, and I have a ton of bracelets and necklaces made of chains and metals. My hair is short and I "spike" it out. My mom cannot accept the fact that I express myself in a way that is different from what she likes.
I am a good girl, and I think a very mature teen. I am not into drugs and am not sexually active. My mom never has to tell me to do chores because I do them on my own. She has never pushed me to get good grades because I already get them.
My mom keeps asking why I wear "those ugly pants" and I tell her they are comfortable. I cut my own hair. She threatens that if I ever do that again, I will owe her money. I understand that she wants me to dress like everyone else and look "normal," but that just is not me! We get along fine except for this one issue. If I were to dress to her standards, we would not have a single fight. All the other parents I know couldn't care less what their kids wear just as long as they stay out of trouble and don't do drugs or have sex.
I really don't know what to say or do so she will back off, except I am who I am. Mom will never be able to change that. What do you say, Abby? -- WELL-DRESSED TEEN (BY MY STANDARDS)
DEAR WELL-DRESSED TEEN: Young people often experiment as they develop their own personalities -- it's a form of rebellion. Although your tastes may always differ from your mother's, I'll bet by the time you're college-bound, your dress will be less radical.
If you are achieving as much as you say, there is no need to change. Your mom should relax a bit and remember you can't judge a book by its cover -- especially when it's a work-in-progress.