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Religion vs. Boys. What to do?

I'm Asian. Actually, I'm a Sikh. I know this is morally wrong to my faith but I really like this boy. My parents say, like any other Sikh parents, that I am not allowed a boyfriend. My partner can only be the boy I marry. But why? I don't want to turn on my religion but I can't help liking a boy can I? I haven't told my parents because I know they will freak out! But it's not wrong to like a boy at the age of 14, is it? I really want to feel loved and cared for by a person from the other gender.
All my friends do but I'm not bothered that I don't have a boyfriend, I just want to be allowed to have experience of having one. My parents don't like it because of my faith and as it would bring shame on the family. I feel so alone and pressured.
Pleaseget in touch soon. Thank you.
Ask Sam

Sam

Hello,

Thank you for your letter.

You have told me about a boy that you really like at school, and it sounds really frustrating for you that because you are Sikh your parents will not accept you having a boyfriend - saying the only partner you can have is the man you will marry. I can see from your letter that you have respect for your family’s faith and traditions, but it also sounds like you might struggle with some aspects of this as you have friends who have boyfriends or girlfriends before they are married.

It is natural to have these feelings and to wonder what it might it might be like to have a boyfriend, but it is also difficult when aspect of our religion or culture seem to go against what we feel or want. At the moment, you feel that you can’t talk to your parents about the way you feel, but I wonder if there is perhaps a teacher or school counsellor that you might feel comfortable talking to in confidence about your frustrations around not being permitted to have a boyfriend. Many young people tell us they find it helpful to talk to someone who they trust.

You might also find it helpful to post on our message boards under Faith and Religion, this is place where young people support each other. No one appears to have started a discussion on not being allowed a boyfriend yet, but you can start one off by posting a question. Read the house rules first to find out how it works.

Your parents have said that your partner can only be the boy that you marry, and I’m wondering whether they have spoken to you about plans for the future, for example, whether they will begin to introduce you to someone they might be considering as a husband for you. It might be useful for you to check this out, and see whether they would be able to allow you to have some choice in the process.

At some point, you may need to have a conversation with them, and it might be a good idea to talk to a ChildLine counsellor soon, so that you can think about what to say when the time comes. You can contact us on 0800 1111, this is a freephone number or have a 1-2-1 chat through the website.

Take care for now.

Sam

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