DR. WALLACE: I’m a boy who is 12 years old and I’m going to turn 13 in a couple more weeks. I like to collect different things like trading cards, but this takes money!
I do chores at home and I do get a very small allowance, but I would like the chance to earn some more so that I could have a bigger budget to work with for my hobbies.
So my main question is, how can I find the best job I can get for a boy of my age? — Ready to work, via email
READY TO WORK: The best choice at your age for employment would be doing chores for friendly neighbors, such as helping with yard work.
There are no restrictions for a teenager to be self-employed, as long as you use good judgment and common sense. I suggest you walk through your neighborhood on a Saturday afternoon and knock on each neighbor’s door to ask him or her if they have any chores they may need help with. Explain that you are seeking to find a few part-time jobs.
Be sure to also take some notecards with you to place on neighbors’ doors that are not home at the time of your visit. Be sure to put your own name, address and telephone number on them and briefly state that you are seeking part-time work as a neighborhood helper.
Most importantly, be sure to take the time in advance to talk to your parents to gain advance approval from them regarding this idea.
You may also take this opportunity to start a savings account at a local bank or online financial institution. Have one of your parents help you with this. Explain that you would like to earn some money to spend on your hobbies, but that you’d also like to learn to save some money, too.
Most parents would likely agree with this logic, and hopefully yours will fit into this category.
Depending on your skill set, you might also be able to tutor younger children, or help coach a younger child with a sport you are proficient at. Basically, you should review your potential skill sets with your parents and have them help guide you toward the type of work you may best be suited for given your age, skills and personality.
I commend you on wanting to enter the workforce at such a young age. Good luck!
YOU ABSOLUTELY CONTROL YOUR SOCIAL LIFE
DR. WALLACE: Almost a year ago, my parents “encouraged” me to stop seeing my boyfriend because they both felt we were getting too serious. I did what my parents asked me to do because I didn’t want to cause a family dispute, and because I only considered my relationship at that time to be casual.
However, my boyfriend and I stayed in touch mostly via text and social media even though we didn’t date in person back then. We are now both attending the same college and may even have classes together this fall.
We plan on getting back together because we’re both 18, and as adults we can make our own decisions, right? Do you think my parents will have a problem with this, and if so, can they stop me from dating him? — College freshman, via email
COLLEGE FRESHMAN: As two new college students over the age of 18, you each certainly have earned the right to choose who to spend social time with.
I encourage you to let your parents know that you and your boyfriend are open to getting back together before they find out on their own.
Dr. Robert Wallace welcomes questions from readers. Although he is unable to reply to all of them individually, he will answer as many as possible in this column. Email him at [email protected] To find out more about Dr. Robert Wallace and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.