Color me confused in Freehold

Dear Joel,

My 14 year old daughter Lisa is a beautiful child in every way. She’s artistic, loves animals, and is very bright, but recently she announced to the family that she wants to be called “Lavender”. She says it truly expresses who she is. Next month her grandma and grandpa are paying us a visit. Should I tell her to lay off this Lavender thing or do I prepare her grandparents in advance for this new name?

Color me confused in Freehold

Dear Confused,
Oh those artists, they really do see things differently. I’m married to one myself. My wife has never changed her name, but I understand and respect the way she expresses her creativity. I think, as long as your daughter has no self-destructive habits, that you let her be lavender. I would tell her grandparents what’s going on, but I would tell them to play dumb, so she can explain it to them, as I think she wants validation and to talk about what she’s feeling. I would also be sure to call her Lisa or Lisa Lavender from time to time. This way, if she wants to go back to her birth name, she won’t feel awkward doing so; you can just gradually transition back. The teenage years aren’t easy on any one and who knows, your daughter may be developing a future persona as an artist or designer.

Posted in Dear Joel