Arts & Leisure

Dear Mari: Trying to cool off the copycat

HER FRIEND is a copycat regarding shoes and other fashion (

Dear Marilyn,

I have a friend that is a copycat. I will show up for lunch sporting a new pair of shoes, and I can almost guarantee that I will spot her wearing the exact same pair a week later.

   I recently got a haircut, and then she cut her hair just like mine. She buys jeans just like the ones that I wear. She even decorated her apartment just like mine!  I understand that imitation is harmless. I only know that it is considered to be the sincerest form of flattery.

However, to be honest, I am annoyed. Is there a way that I can politely ask her to stop? Or, should I just accept the fact that she is driving me nuts?

Signed, Imitated Girl

Dear Imitated Girl,

   I don’t blame you for being irritated! I think that most people would be too, in your situation.

    There is no reason to think that she will stop this behavior on her own. If you want her to change her ways, you have no choice but to ask her to.  There is really no way you can drop hints. You are going to have to be blunt, and come right out and discuss it.

   Let her know that you have noticed how similar her decorating style at her apartment is to your own. Also mention that she bought the shoes that are like yours.

   Tell her that you’d really appreciate it if she did not continue to imitate your style so much. Let her know that you both are individuals, and you each need to express yourselves as such. Hopefully, she will agree. However, she may be offended. If she is, that is her issue, and not your fault.

   Don’t feel guilty, as you have done nothing wrong. If she chooses to end the friendship, or distance herself from you, that is her choice.

Dear Marilyn,

I came to Orange County from the Philippines about eight years ago. I am now 21 years old. I need more freedom from my parents and their rules.

I am a second year college student, and I make good grades. They need to lighten up, and let me alone. For example, I recently went to a  party with my friends from school. At first they weren’t going to let me go. Then they allowed it, but they said they had to pick me up at midnight. I seriously considered not going at all, but I swallowed my pride and agreed. I was so humiliated.

None of my friends have this problem. We are all in college, and they get to come and go as they please. I would move out in a second if I could, but I can’t afford to do that.

How do I convince my parents that they need to give me more freedom? I don’t want to be disrespectful, or ungrateful to the people that raised me. What should I do? Do you agree that I should have more freedom?

Signed, Prisoner

Dear Prisoner,

   I totally agree with you that you should have more freedom from your parent’s rules. However, I am not the one that you need to convince. It is difficult to grow up in a culture that is different from the one that your parents were raised in. It is understandable that you want to do the things that your friends all do.

   You can start by having a heart to heart talk with your parents. Let them know that you are 21 now, and you really would like to have more freedom to learn and to grow without the restrictions of their rules.

   Let them know that you love them very much, but that you really feel it is time. If they refuse, then you really don’t have much choice. As long as you live with them, you must abide by their rules.

   Once you have graduated from college, you will hopefully be able to earn enough money to live out on your own.

   Until that time, keep as active as you can with your friends. Try not to be embarrassed, as your true friends will understand the situation. Don’t waste your time being concerned by what the other kids think.

Dear Readers, please send your questions .




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