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Monday, December 12, 2011

East Coast - West Coast Communication Breakdown

For an upcoming freelance article targeted at helping parents navigate the tricky and oftne murky waters of teen romance, I put in a query at an on-line expert listserve for an expert source. My query read thus:

Summary: Teen Love
Due Date: 2011-11-22 19:00:00 EST
Industry Categories: General,Lifestyle and Fitness
Query: For the February issue of Augusta Family Magazine I'm working on a parents' guide to handling your teenager's romance. I am looking for a child development, or other, expert familiar with the topic of parenting teens. I will need answers to questions such as: 1) When is a parent too involved with the relationship and why should this be avoided?
2) What are the best ways to engage a teenager when discussing his/her romantic relationship?
3) How can parents ensure that their children maintain healthy romantic relationships?
4) What are the signs of trouble that every parent should be able to spot? ...and so forth. The interview can be conducted by phone or by email.
In your response to my query, please include your credentials and a few lines reflecting your thoughts on this topic. I will contact you if your expertise is right for the article.

The very first response I received within a couple of hours was this from a PR representative inWest Hollywood, CA 90069:

Hope all is well. We rep two relationship experts who can provide good health-related reasons why cuddling and relaxing in bed with your partner is good for you. Please consider this nationally recognized experts for your article.

That's not what I meant by "healthy romantic relationships" in my query. Here in the southeast, in the first buckle hole of the Bible Belt, we're not too keen on our teenagers cuddling and relaxing in bed together. In fact the teen pregnancy rates in this area of the country indicate that too much of that is going on already.

I guess her response is just another example of the the east coast - west coast communication gap. If questioned, she would probably defend herself by saying that my query was too slow for her to understand.


Brianna said...

I love visiting your blog, Lucy! You always manage to put a smile on my face!

William Kendall said...

Oh, boy! That's funny!

To paraphrase Obi-Wan...

"This isn't the query you were looking for. She can go about her business."