Oracle
335 oracle items tagged as team oracle
April 17, 2014 / submitted by Lourdes, United States of America
Q.  TEAM ORACLE QUESTION #164
My relationship is complicated, my boyfriend and I come from two very different cultures. He's not allowed to date, but he's dating me. Right now, when people ask me about how do I see our future, I always tell them that our future is unknown. His family doesn't know about me, and I don't know if he'll tell them one day. I'm trying to hold on to this, it's complicated, but he makes me happy. I'm just afraid that one day I'll get hurt if he decides to take his family's way. What should I do?

If you love each other it shouldn't matter than you have completely different backgrounds. Unfortunately, in reality I'm afraid that some people still disagree.
Sadly, sometimes differences in culture & faith can put a huge strain on a relationship. Nobody can tell you who to love but if your boyfriend is keeping the secret to respect his parents' traditional wishes while still living with them, you have to also respect your boyfriend desire to do that; there is little you can do about it. That said, you are entitled (to want) to conduct your relationship openly without shame or guilt. If you are not happy about having to hide, this relationship may not be for you.
I don't know what your ages are but I'm guessing you both still live at home and perhaps abiding by house rules has to be taken into consideration. I would hope that when you both reach adult age, talk about the future will shift & become more positive.
You may decide to take the risk that things will change but of course, they may not.
Perhaps you could both learn about each other's culture. You don't have to embrace his beliefs but it may help if the time to meet his parents ever comes.
I don't think it would be wise to put pressure on him or issue ultimatums but I do think you should seriously consider what YOU want and then tell him.
I assume your boyfriend thinks they won't approve or be open-minded but for the sake of the relationship, perhaps you could gently suggest he takes that chance and then you both know what you're dealing with.
Over to you.

I suggest you ask him how he feels about dating you. If he is ashamed, there is a chance he will leave you, but even in that case, you can still have a relationship.
Different cultures and love don't fit always that easy. You know, he is now trying to be a boy like one in your culture, but maybe you should also take a look at his culture. Maybe you two can find a balance between the cultures. I guess, if his parents are not too old-fashioned or too strictly, they'll agree with that. It also helps when the parents know you. Ask your boyfriend to invite you to his house and to introduce you as a friend. I guess, when his parents know you for quite a while, they'll agree with a relationship, and maybe later, marriage.
Isabelle


There can be many answers some that can comfort some that can make you think logically and some that would please you but there are some that you need - it is frustrating when it's complicated but it can serve for good If its true love it will endure all and will make both of you and your bond stronger because true love endures all and hopes all. So cheer up and enjoy your boyfriend. If he takes his family way then you'll move on that will take pain but everything that grows takes a bit of pain. And you will learn something that would be useful for you to learn to know and understand! Marija.

Well, Lourdes, I think now would be a good time to address these concerns to him. I know this isn't an easy situation to work through, but it's not something you can do alone. You've got to make sure he is as committed as you are, because if you find out he chooses his family's way over you it's going to hurt, but it's not something you cannot recover from. But the longer it goes on and the longer you're together, the more painful it's going to be if it doesn't work out.
And I don't want to seem overly negative, because there's obviously a very real chance that he will be committed, and that he loves you that much, and that's a great thing to hear, but it would really help to have him reassure you in that.
I hope the best for the both of you, no matter the results.
Bradley H.


This is a widespread situation, two people love each other but they have different cultures. That's difficult, and seems the problem that will never solved. Before anything else there is one thing you have to answer. Do you love each other? I mean is this true love? If your answer is yes don't care stuff like this. Maybe your parents can be so tough, but think about it they' fell in love so many times in your age and I think they'll understand your situation in the end. Introduce your boyfriend to your family or at least tell one of your trusted and loved ones from your family for example your sister, brother, cousin etc. I'm sure the person that you tell about your boyfriend helps you about your situation. Good luck. Oylum.

I can really relate to your dilemma as I was the one in a similar situation a few years back. It really is his decision as to whether he will stand up to his family, or succumb to their wishes. Perhaps he is looking for a way out of long held values, or maybe this is him testing his wings at hints of independence. Consider what will happen if it is the latter would you be happy? If it the former you may need to offer him much support as he will be going against some strongly entrenched values and ideas. Only by talking to him frankly will you find out what he wants and he may not even know yet. If you need more from him, you may need to look elsewhere. In my case it worked because I knew what I wanted. He may or may not know. Best of luck, Laurie.

With your question we are faced with an age old question.
The question of following your families traditions or breaking away from them and finding your own way.
It seems that you are very concerned about the future of your life and your relationship.
Talk to your partner about it!
The best and easiest way to deal with problems is to talk to someone you can naturally and honestly talk to, without hiding any feelings.
Talk to him about how you feel about his families traditions and how you can try and find a solutions to the differences in culture.
Maybe start off by asking him to tell his parents about you, because if you both are in for the long run, they're going to find out sooner or later.
From there on you can start working on a relationship with his family and, you never know, you might be welcomed to the family in no time.
If they do stay strict about their traditions and you're not welcomed into the family, then it's really your partners decision to either stay with the family culture or part from that, to stay with you!
But if he doesn't want to tell them about you at all, I'd start questioning the point of the relationship entirely, because no one can be happy hiding in someone's shadow.
Ultimately there are a few ways the situation can develop.
Some positive and some negative, which are heavily influenced by the characters and personalities involved.
Greetings, Clemens.

If he really loves you then tell him to convince his parents about you. You cannot put him in this situation only because he really loves you and so do you. You need to think about money for his education, living and everything. You cannot pay for that. His parents have to. The sooner he tell the parents the better it will be. They will understand if he tells without rebellion and anger. He must promise truly his parents that he will work hard to bring his scores up and wouldn't let the relationship get in the way of his future. You can tell your friends that you both are best friends till his parents agree. If they do not ask them why and try to find the solution. Neeraja.

I found myself in the same situation and regrettably due to very different cultural views, I was forced to end a relationship that meant a lot to me. What you have no matter how complicated is still a beautiful thing. Meaningful relationships are never easy and have obstacles, and you can lose yourself in the present thinking about the future. If you can learn to accept cultural differences that could bring you apart then wherever your relationship goes that will bring you closer together. Don't lose focus on what's really important and what brought you to where you are. If you can do these then I know that you'll be more than able to handle whatever comes your way. Mustafa.

You should talk to you boyfriend about your worries first. I know it can be hard when you're from two different cultures and I don't know how long you've been together, but if it's serious maybe its time you told his family about your relationship? His family might be against it, but in the end it's his life and he gets to choose who he dates and who he loves. Good luck!

Try to talk with him and say what's on you're mind. Tell him that your feelings for him are for real and that he makes you really happy. Tbh if he really loves you he will speak to his family and try to make this work. Maybe it's easy for me to say, but you can't ignore real feelings right. I really hope that it's gonna be okay! I wanna wish you good luck! Lots of love and happiness for the both of you. Greetzz Marianne.

Thanks everyone who replied to this week's question. Remember, Team Oracle is open to anyone so if you'd like to reply, click to read this week's, and send us your answer.



April 17, 2014 / submitted by The Oracle, United Kingdom
Q.  WHO'D LIKE TO JOIN TEAM ORACLE?

As you may know, we have a weekly feature, Team Oracle, whereby each Friday we open questions of a personal nature to all of you to answer too. Then, the following Friday, I post a selection of the best answers, alongside my own reply.

ANYONE can join in so, if you'd like to, please email your response to the following question, in no more than 250 words, to theoracle@coldplay.com before midnight Thursday 24 April.

I suppose this isn't so much a question for advice as much as it is simply looking for some sort of comfort. Oracle, have you ever lost someone who you considered a best-friend? You see a couple of years ago someone became my friend and was the first person I ever considered a true best-friend, and the first person I ever trusted. He was a year older than me and after graduating high school, left for college, never contacting me on his own afterwards.
When I asked him why, he said he did so to many people, but I know he kept in touch with those he considered close friends. This has left me in a whirl of confusion, guilt and loneliness. I'm sure he thinks I am too clingy and fragile - the last time I talked to him, it seemed forced when saying he wanted to be friends.
I'm a college freshman now, and as the year ends, I'm beginning to see that I haven't even made any new memories or friends because nothing can measure up to what I had with this friend.
Ann, USA.


Look forward to seeing your replies.

The Oracle.

Please email your replies to theoracle@coldplay.com
Including your twitter address may result in a follow back.



April 11, 2014 / submitted by Cristine, Brazil
Q.  TEAM ORACLE QUESTION #163
I have been listening to Coldplay since 2006, which is the year when my godfather (who was also my uncle and someone I used to consider my father) passed away. I was only 12. Since he died, I have developed a strange sense that I should be responsible for myself as much as possible, and give my parents the least trouble as I can, to help them. But I am really tired of not asking for what I want and not being free and irresponsible even if just for a bit. What should I do?

20 years old is probably an age where many people feel the pressure to grow up and act responsibly yet here you are having already spent the last 8 years doing that.
Your uncle's death led to you relinquishing your role of child within your family unit. There's nothing wrong with being easy to live with by the way, I'm sure your parents are grateful for the dignified way you grew up but you will always be your parents' child & are entitled to their attention and to have your needs met.
I will assume you haven't discussed your feelings with your parents but you don't have to protect them - they're supposed to protect you. If it's possible, explain how the last 8 years have been for you and the profound affect your Uncle's death had.

Don't be afraid to ask for support or help, as it may be that you didn't properly grieve for your godfather uncle.
I think you need to let your hair down, have some fun and stop being so hard on yourself. It may be hard to break the chain but free yourself - in moderation of course, there's a danger you'll go off the rails and we don't want that, do we? ;-)
Over to you.


I can understand that you're now in a difficult situation. I think it's huge what you've been doing all those years - helping parents as much as you can. Giving love is the only think that can make people happy.
But don't forget being nice isn't about not living your own life. You're coming to the age when you need to start it on your own sort of (i mean - not being always with your parents). I think all these years you've been pushing it deeper and deeper into yourself - and now it wants to strike out.
What to do? Let it stream. Ask for what you want. However, not the rude way. You should be still responsible and helpful to your parents. But responsibility isn't about always not affording anything that you like and want. It's about using these things in a proper amount: the amount that doesn't destroy you. Just go out and hang around with your friends. Your parents will be glad to see you happy outside. First I should recommend talking to your parents a bit about it.
But do not forget - there's no way letting go all the good things that you've done for years. Do not forget to love your parents still. You'll just start to love them a different way. Good luck to you! Patrik.


You should do what you can to please your parents, and it's great that you think of your parents & what will make them happy. But you also have to think of yourself, and what suits you. You need to live your life to the fullest and do what you want. A little rebellion and danger is good; healthy even. But, do still take care of yourself and be mindful of your decisions. It's your life; make it count. Ally. NC.

Part of being independent and responsible is allowing for self-care. It is not a sign of weakness to communicate to others the support that you want and need. Tell your family and friends what you are thinking and how you are feeling. Journal your frustrations, hopes, goals, and your gratitude. If you want to talk to a counselor or a mentor, ask for help finding those resources. It is a sign of strength and independence to advocate for yourself.
Do not feel guilty for asking for support or for receiving what you want and need. Be willing to receive the support and love you wish for without judging yourself harshly. We are all in this life together and it is our responsibility to nurture and care for others. Ask trusted family, friends, clergy to listen to your feelings and thoughts and to respond to you with love and support.
Best wishes, Elise J.


In truth we should all be responsible for our selves. The fact that you have developed a sense of responsibility is a good thing. Being kind and helpful to anyone - be it your parents or a complete stranger - is also a great thing. Never be frightened to ask for what you want though. You may not get it, but it doesn't mean you shouldn't ask.

Being free, doesn't mean being irresponsible, it means feeling free. Maybe free to express yourself; your taste in clothes, in dancing or whatever it may be. It's not so much that other people make us feel trapped, but rather we make ourselves feel trapped. Normally by the way we think about things.
Personally the most important thing that i have learned in this life is to be myself. Helpful where I can be, kind and considerate, but always myself. That is not always easy, as sometimes you feel you may upset somebody because of your own wants or needs. But you cannot put your own life on hold for others. Life is to be shared between us all. It does not belong to anyone one person.
It's normal Cristine to start wanting to make your own life. And I am sure you will. And when you do the people that matter won't mind, and the people that mind, won't matter.
Be well, Brio.

You have to learn to be responsible for your own sake and that of your family. You have to respect people who love you so you can live in harmony. Do not disrespect your elders. God bless you. Rolando.

I'm 19 and currently going through the same issue of not wanting to bother my parents for things. I recently graduated from film school and I'm in the in between of college grad and employed adult. I feel like because I'm graduated I shouldn't bother them for anything anymore, even though I'm still young (US students generally graduate around 22-23). Eventually, we discussed the issue. What they explained to me is sometimes we need to admit we need help. Sure, you want to be independent, but you also need to admit that sometimes we aren't able to provide certain things for ourselves that we need. Sometimes, we need help, and we need to be able to admit that. Also, your parents (like mine) might very well want to help you out. If they love and care about you, they'll want you to be happy and won't mind giving you what you ask for every once and awhile. Basically, level with them and with yourself. Admit there are some things you can't handle yet and ask for help. Don't be too proud. Be happy. J.D.

First of all, I think you should be proud of yourself taking your own responsibilities. I agree that you should indeed take your own responsibilities, but that doesn't mean you don't have permission to ask anything. Try to find a balance. Be responsible, but also try to ask things from others. It might sound strange, but it might be hard the first times you ask things. But I'm also pretty sure you can do it, because you learned to take your own responsibility. Now you have the responsibility to learn others about responsibility, by asking things.
Isabelle.


There is nothing wrong with being self reliant. But when you are in need of something that you could not provide, never hesitate to ask for someone's help. After all, they're still your parents and are willing to support you.
Hoping you the best.
DGarbageMan.

I want to start off by saying I'm terribly sorry for your loss. It's really hard, especially when someone close to you passes away. I lost my father when I was 15. It seems to me that you made yourself grow up too fast. You need to realize that everyone, even myself at almost 34, still need to ask for what I want/need. By holding yourself back, it's only hurting yourself. Have you talked to your parents about it? It would lift a lot off your shoulders. You can still be the responsible one, and still know when you need to ask for help. If you must be irresponsible, do it in a good way. Spend a weekend doing something for you. Just don't lose yourself in the process. Remember that you can't hold everything on your shoulders. Talk about it. Rosalie.

I think you need to figure out why you are being like this in the first place. Have your parents requested you to be more independent? Do you feel that if you weren't like this the outcome would be negative? What would happen if you were to let loose for a bit? I personally think it is all up to you, and it is your choice to decide how you act and what the consequences will be. If you aren't sure, try having a talk with your parents and sort out what's going on to clarify some things, I'm sure they'll understand. My last piece of advice is to listen to some Coldplay (doesn't that help you let loose?:) Sorry about your loss, best of luck sorting stuff out! Julia.

It's good to be responsible and to help out your parents if you can, but that doesn't mean you can't go out there and have fun! Live your life, make sure that 40 years from now you don't have any regrets and that you've missed out on as little as possible. You won't always get everything you ask for, but it's alright to be a little irresponsible from time to time, within limits of course. Good luck! Amanda.

First of all I'm very sorry for your tragic loss.
When something so life changing happens in someone's life at such a young age it can lead to a lot of confusion and in some ways frustration, for not knowing what to do.
Where do I seek help? Who do I talk to? How should I react?
By becoming responsible for yourself at such a young age, you have probably become much more mature than others in your age.
This can be a good and a bad thing, as a lot of the experience of being foolish and childish was taken away from you.
By doing so, you sadly might've taken away some of your parents duties as well.
When you become a parent, you devote your life to your children, your very being strives to raise that precious gift, and what comes with that is teaching your child how to react in situations and raising it to become a well rounded adult.
Maybe your parents didn't mind seeing you teach yourself how to become that but the best thing, in my opinion, would be to talk to your parents about how you feel and what has been going through your mind and ask them how they felt!
Not only will this bring you some closure but it will bring you closer together!
To finish off, I hope that you could relate to some Coldplay songs and that they truly helped you along the way!
Yours, Clemens.

It sounds like you made a very mature decision when you were 12, and I am sure that your parents have appreciated it very much. If I have got my maths correct, you are around 20 now, and I think it would be more than normal for you to want certain things, as you are indeed a young adult now. Everyone is unique, and has different wants and interests, and although it sounds as though you have suppressed the things you want to a degree, deep down you are no different and rightly so. Balance though is key if your family is used to you being a certain way. But you can be mature, responsible and more independent all at the same time. Have you tried talking to your family? If you think through what you want to say, and explain how you feel in a calm way, you may be surprised by the response. Have fun and stay safe! Best wishes, Diane.

The loved ones are really important for us and when we lost them feel something different. Different thoughts, different senses. These senses may disturb in the feature like yours and I'm sure that your parents want to stand by you. Talk to them, tell them what you feel and what you WANT. That's the most important thing in the life. Don't restrict yourself. Think yourself "I'm important. I know what I want. I'm good." My suggestion may sound simple but it answers the purpose, always. And one more thing, don't stop listening Coldplay. Don't panic and good luck. Oylum.

If I understood it properly, you have been acting the way you described because you wanted to. Nobody else asked you to do it, no one except yourself. Your reaction to that tragic event was to make the ones you love as happy as possible, so that you wouldn't lose any other person that's important to you (even in a psychological way), for example, by disappointing or somehow harming them. If they were happy, you were happy. But, as years passed by, you started to realize that having that behavior had consequences, which you mentioned as not being free. Well, as far as I'm concerned, every relationship has its ups and downs, and what you're doing is trying to avoid the "downs", in order to help them. However, by doing that, you're not being true to yourself, and that results in an apparently good, but "truly unrealistic" relationship with your parents. My point is: you can give them your opinion and tell them what you want, and there's nothing wrong with that. By doing this, you'll never lose them as you lost your godfather. There's no comparison. And that's what you need to understand. You can be free AND have a strong relationship, without losing them. I hope I helped. Good luck! Ana.

Thanks to all those who replied to this week's question. Remember, Team Oracle is open to anyone so if you fancy replying, click to read this week's, and send us your answer.



April 11, 2014 / submitted by The Oracle, United Kingdom
Q.  WHO'D LIKE TO JOIN TEAM ORACLE??
As you may know, we have a weekly feature, Team Oracle, whereby each Friday we open questions of a personal nature to all of you to answer too. Then, the following Friday, I post a selection of the best answers, alongside my own reply.

ANYONE can join in so, if you'd like to, please email your response to the following question, in no more than 250 words, to theoracle@coldplay.com before midnight Thursday 17th April.

My relationship is complicated, my boyfriend and I come from two very different cultures. He's not allowed to date, but he's dating me. Right now, when people ask me about how do I see our future, I always tell them that our future is unknown. His family doesn't know about me, and I don't know if he'll tell them one day. I'm trying to hold on to this, it's complicated, but he makes me happy. I'm just afraid that one day I'll get hurt if he decides to take his family's way. What should I do? Lourdes, USA.

Look forward to seeing your replies.

The Oracle.

Please email your replies to theoracle@coldplay.com
Including your twitter address may result in a follow back.



April 4, 2014 / submitted by The Oracle, United Kingdom
Q.  WHO'D LIKE TO JOIN TEAM ORACLE?

As you may know, we have a weekly feature, Team Oracle, whereby each Friday we open questions of a personal nature to all of you to answer too. Then, the following Friday, I post a selection of the best answers, alongside my own reply.

ANYONE can join in so, if you'd like to, please email your response to the following question, in no more than 250 words, to theoracle@coldplay.com before midnight (GMT) Thursday 10th April.

I have been listening to Coldplay since 2006, which is the year when my godfather (who was also my uncle and someone I used to consider my father) passed away. I was only 12. Since he died, I have developed a strange sense that I should be responsible for myself as much as possible, and give my parents the least trouble as I can, to help them. But I am really tired of not asking for what I want and not being free and irresponsible even if just for a bit. What should I do? Cristine, Brazil.

Look forward to seeing your replies.

The Oracle.

Please email your replies to theoracle@coldplay.com
Including your twitter address may result in a follow back.



March 28, 2014 / submitted by Sydney, United States of America
Q.  TEAM ORACLE QUESTION #161
I've had a long issue with my temper... I'm a very forgiving person. Really, I hold very few grudges. But I have a temper as well, and a bad one at that. But recently I've been taking it out on my friend; because I'm fed up with the way she treats me. When she's depressed/angry/sad, I try to listen and help, but when I'm one of those things, she laughs it off or criticizes me. Now, with anyone else, I would get away from them, but this is my only friend. And without her I wouldn't survive school. How can I
1. Stop getting so mad at her
2. Get her to please, stop making things worse for me
3. Calm down?

Hmm, I don't really see this as a direct problem because over the years I have realized I have different friends for different reasons and am also a different friend for different reasons. In fact, the latter happened without my permission!
I have one friend for example who has had some particularly troubled times but to her, my role is to cheer her up and be the "fun friend". At first, I was quite worried that I wasn't being there enough or providing enough support but my friend was getting that elsewhere - whether I wanted her to or not.
It was tough at first but I realized that part of being a friend was being there in whatever capacity I was wanted or needed rather than what I expected. In a way, that meant that I saw her role as the same.
Now, you say she's your only friend so this is why you're frustrated. I presume this person isn't giving back what you need so you need to get that somewhere else. It's quite a lot of pressure to put on one person and personally, I don't think it's actually a pressure one should put on another. If you feel the need to vent perhaps you could use a punch bag to physically exert some anger, an open space to yell, write down your frustration, paint or create - anything to express yourself or... get a new friend!
Despite my friend who needs me to be fun, I have friends who if I needed to talk to about negative issues, I can turn to. I'm lucky in the fact I don't tend to need anyone for that as I can release such emotions without a third party.
I just think you need to try different ways of expressing yourself and find what works for you without putting pressure on this particular friend. They clearly aren't comfortable with that responsibility even though you are there for them but sadly it isn't always a reciprocal role.
Over to you.

The only solution for your situation is yourself, if you don't want to get mad with her, just try to find ways that keep you calmed, you could stay away from her while you feel mad for example.
You'd be impressed about the quantity of people who don't feel the support from their friends, you could talk to your friend and tell her how you feel with her attitude, if she doesn't care, you could try to find new real friends. You may feel it's hard but it isn't, just don't be so closed and look for people who share your tastes and ideals.
Finally just relax, take it easy, don't take life so serious, be focused but have fun, be confident of yourself, don't get too stressed because everything has a solution, look for it and do it.
Enjoy your life, it is beautiful. A hug.


I read your story, and I think the best thing you can do is tell her the truth. Ask her why she always is critical to you. Ask her to stop being critical at you, because I think she doesn't have the right to be. Ofcourse, being critical can be helpfull in some situations, but not always.
When she want's to stop with it, you have a responsibility as well: helping her to stop. When she stopped being critital, you will surely calm down and don't have a reason anymore to get mad of her.
One last thing: when you ask her to stop being critical, look serious, but not angry. Then she'll understand you are serious, and not angry. Because when she thinks you are angry, she doesn't see the reason of that and she get's angry. And I guess you don't want that.
Goodluck, Isabelle.

You're angry at her because she is not meeting your need for friendship. First off, you need to tell her, but not in an angry way. You love her, she is your friend, forgive her, then tell her; she may not even know she isn't listening. She may also laugh because she doesn't know how to handle it when you are upset. Perhaps you are her rock, and when you are unstable, she gets nervous as she doesn't know what to do or how to help. Tell her what you want her to do when you are upset so she knows, and that she can always say the same to you if she has a need you are not meeting. If she doesn't listen, your only two choices are to change your rules for friendship, or realize she isn't the friend you think she is. As for your temper, you need to accept that not everyone shares your perspective on the world, nor should they. Perhaps if you didn't react, and just listen (like you say you do for your friend) you'd learn something and even make other friends - that's kinda how it works :) Mr. Gregg.

Being in a situation where we find ourselves acting the way we normally would not is a sign of anxiety. You will find yourself fumbling when you are not sure of anything. When something is pinching us at the backdrop of things, when the flow of events are losing control, not going how they used to be. I feel the reason the series of fights happening between you two are , majorly because you are scared of losing her. If I assume her part of story is the same, that is you are her only friend, then the same thing could be happening to her.
More anxiousness means more mess up. So at this point of time, the best thing is to focus on is how to get less anxious, and more confident. Now the confidence in you could come from either making more friends at school or outside. Or it could come from indulging in something you really love, something which you always wanted to do , but you have been lazy enough to bother less about it. I would suggest you indulge in some activity/hobby because that cannot harm you back.
Indulging in some activity will definitely give you both more space, and time to judge situations, yourselves and weigh how important it is to be with each other. The idea is to be more confident about yourself, the friendship you share with her. Mansi.

I would say that those kinds of things happen to almost everybody, at every time, in every place! Don't be discouraged. If she is truly your friend - not a friend who only takes advantages from you, then good! You ought to keep her as a friend. One way to stop your anger is to actually contemplate on her and your own flaws. You have stated that you've had a long issue with your temper... if she's able to cope with it, why can't you? Criticism is probably her way to get you out from your depressed state. Who knows? However, if you're not okay with that, you can talk it with her. Having a chat with her in a cozy cafe with a cup of hot tea or coffee would be a pleasant idea. You can ask her nicely not to criticize you because you don't like it. You can also add things that implies that you actually want her encouragement or her advice - not her criticism. I'm quite positive that she'll understand. And as for you to calm down... listening to some music in your bedroom, alone (and have some private quality time, practically) would be a great idea. Reading some books or taking a short walk and watching the scenery around you would be nice as well.
I hope it helps. I wish you all the very best. Good luck!
Bell, Indonesia.


My daughter has similar issues with her friend, and I understand how delicate this situation can be. The thing is you don't deserve to be treated like that. Are there any reasons why she acts like this? Perhaps jealousy, or insecurity. Understanding why she is like it might help you to control your anger a little.
I know it can be difficult to be direct with someone when they hurt you, but you do need to explain how you feel. Try taking a deep breath when she laughs or criticizes you, and calmly say how like she needs you to listen to her at times, you need the same from her. A real friend would do that and you have every right to say this.
I often say to my daughter that it is not healthy for anyone to have just one friend. You don't need to exclude your friend in any way, but are you able to branch out to other people too. It may take time, but from what you have said, you sound like a nice girl, and I'm sure it will happen eventually.
Believe it or not, I have a bad temper too! But the one thing that always makes me feel much brighter is a bit of exercise, like a bike ride or swimming. When you exercise, your body releases chemicals called endorphins which can reduce stress, anxiety and feelings of depression. Perhaps you and your friend could do some together, which might help patch things up a little.
I hope it goes well for you! Diane.

I've experienced that before and I found that nobody will take care of you except you. I mean they may let you down or may take your hand to the safe side but it's all around you. So keep on your lovely way and try to find out the "Sydney" herself and she'll try to fix you indeed. Mash.

I hate to say this, but it sounds to me like you're being friends with this person for all the wrong reasons. Talk to her about how you feel and tell her you don't appreciate it when she laughs at your problems. But please don't stay friends with someone just because you think they are your only friend in school. Join a sportsteam or sit with someone new during lunch. Talk to someone in your class. I know making new friends can be hard, but I'm sure that with a little effort you'll be just fine:-) Good luck! Amanda.

Thanks to all those who replied to this week's question. Remember, Team Oracle is open to anyone so if you fancy replying, click to read this week's, and send us your answer.



March 28, 2014 / submitted by The Oracle, United Kingdom
Q.  WHO'D LIKE TO JOIN TEAM ORACLE?

As you may know, we have a weekly feature, Team Oracle, whereby each Friday we open questions of a personal nature to all of you to answer too. Then, the following Friday, I post a selection of the best answers, alongside my own reply.

ANYONE can join in so, if you'd like to, please email your response to the following question, in no more than 250 words, to theoracle@coldplay.com before midnight Thursday 3 April.

I come from a country town by the bay. Ever since I was little, I witnessed my mother being harassed by a group of people, and it seems they are still up to their old tricks. They would follow mom in the street, to parties, and eventually into her employment and would scream at her face with profanities or just sit down next to her at the cafeteria and openly talk about rumours and just be plain rude. This is just the tip of the iceberg, and the other details would be too personal too mention. My mother is too nice, so I am just wondering if it is my place to intervene now, that I have enough information accumulated over 3 decades.

Look forward to seeing your replies.

The Oracle.

Please email your replies to theoracle@coldplay.com
Including your twitter address may result in a follow back.



March 21, 2014 / submitted by Michael, United States of America
Q.  TEAM ORACLE QUESTION #160
I'm 20 years old and last night I was at a party and was talking to a nice girl then she politely introduced me to her friend. The girl I was talking to explained to the girl who I was and the girl's friend goes, "Ohhh, you're Michael? I've heard a lot about you" in a very negative manner. I'm a great guy but I sure have made my mistakes in the past so my question is how can I rebuild my reputation that some people hold on to very tightly and apply judgement towards me. I was nothing but polite to the girl but she still didn't care and walked away as I continued to talk to her friend. I need your advice because it seems my reputation precedes me! And now that I'm 20 I'm starting to change my old habits and become the man I see myself as. Thanks.

When I first received your question, I thought I would probably write a lengthy response but here I am thinking it's not necessary. This is one of those situations where when we're caught off guard; we don't quite know how to respond. Hindsight is a wonderful thing, so what do you think you could or would have said with warning?
This girl does not know you but she'd obviously judged you without getting to know you which is unfair but sadly it's common human nature.
You're young but regardless of age, we ALL make mistakes. Whatever you've done, you've obviously decided that's no longer for you and made some changes - good on you for that! If someone who doesn't know you reacts in a negative way, perhaps you can politely ask them why. It may seem an uncomfortable situation but you've every right to ask even if they decline to reply.
Go ahead and defend your honour.
All you need to do is carry on with the path you're on & be proud of who you are NOW regardless of what's been before.
Over to you.

Hello! I think that the best way to make people forget about your reputation is to create a new one. If people see changes, that's what they'll start to talk about, and, eventually, they will forget what you have done in the past. If you show them that you're no longer the person they didn't like, and if they like what you've become, the past will be forgotten and they'll stop judging you for that. Because I think that, when people keep judging someone, they do it because they think that person is still like that, so if you did change, you might get a chance of being accepted. However, I believe that being accepted is not the most important thing, and the priority that you should keep in mind is to stay true to yourself. You should never try to be who you're not just 'cause you're not accepted by someone. If they don't like who you are, just forget about them and I'm sure you'll find (or maybe you have already found!) someone who loves you for your own personality. And those are the ones that you should keep close, as they are the ones who really matter. Best wishes, Ana.

There are two options in this situation:
In the first option, the friend of that nice girl is pretty... I guess dumb is the best word to use. Too dumb to look who you really are. In that case you should win your reputation back, but I guess you mentioned that yourself...
Just ask her why she ignores you. People like her don't like straight questions.
In the second option I'm afraid that nice girl you're talking about, isn't that nice at all. If it's true she told her friend of your 'mistakes,' in a way to make sure her friend doesn't like you (I guess she told it in that way, because of the girl's friend reaction), she doesn't like you. So what I think you should do, is ignore her. Don't call her, don't talk to her, don't visit her and don't let her in. If she really doesn't like you (which is I think pretty realistic), it's better for you and for her not to see each other anymore. You don't have your reputation back, but what reputation do you need with people who don't care who you really are?
I guess you want to find out in which situation you are. That's pretty simple: the reaction of that nice girl. Did she walk away as well? Did she look a bit like she won something? Did she seem surprised? The answers on those questions will give you an answer on the question in which situation you are. And when you found out that, you can do the right thing. Isabelle.

Carry on being true to yourself as ultimately that's where u will find true happiness. Don't worry what other people think about you, only what their view on the world is. Those that matter will make up their own mind, and see you, not your reputation, and those that can't - don't matter. Jo.

We all have those moments and fears about people having an idea of who you are when it's really not who you are. People tend to see little negatives about someone and only use them to create their idea of who someone is. Unfortunately, that's life because we all make mistakes and are judged by them. My advice is to communicate with people and show them who you are. Calling people out and telling them that you know you've made mistakes but that's not who you are might help. Just be the best person you can be, and always keep in mind that someone is always watching and judging. Ashlyn.

Prejudice is often inevitable, Michael. It is admirable that you are trying to find the root cause for it in your character. However, bear in mind that some people will choose to neglect your good manners regardless of your efforts to change. So, do not waste time trying to impress them or alter their perceptions. At that age it is virtually impossible, especially when a mind is set to see through a certain lens. Instead, focus on developing your better self, as you mention you have already started doing. Visualize the desired image of yourself and work towards achieving it. Apparently, it has proven useful to try to foresee how an act on your part would be understood by others. This helps becoming more thoughtful and considerate. Also, do not forget to distinguish between people you value and the rest. The latter should not be of interest to you. Point being, do not strive to rebuild your reputation which some people might prejudge either way. Continue building your person. Such a gesture on your side would speak for itself, and it would speak loud. Sylvia.

To be honest it makes me really sad that people judge other people only from the past, everybody change and nobody is perfect! I think that you have to look for some nice People Who take you as you are and please don't change your self only because they want you to change,
"Don't look at my past because I don't live there anymore " this slogan helps me always, maybe it helps you to. Good luck greets Marianne.

There will always be people that judge you, with or without a bad reputation. Try not to waste too much of your time worrying about what other's think of you. Your time is better spent on people who don't care about what they've heard from others and genuinely want to get to know the real you. Prove the people that judge you wrong, by showing them you've changed. It'll take some time to lose a bad reputation, but I'm sure you can do it! Good luck. Amanda.

You did the right thing in being polite to the girl regardless; this shows strength of character and is a step in the right direction. And it is a good sign that you do actually realise how your past actions have affected your reputation. But more importantly you do want to change them.
The good news is, it can be done, but it will doubtless take time and consistency for people to realise you have changed. You are still young, but with a strong mindset and plan of action, this bad reputation will become a distant memory, not only in your mind, but other people's.
As time has shown me, we do often reap what we sow in life, and although it may be difficult at times, it is definitely worth your while in the long run.
In the short term, is there anything you can do to ease the mistakes you have made in the past? Perhaps an apology to someone you may have hurt. This may help you in your quest to become the man you want to be, and you may even feel good about it which will help spur you on. Best wishes, DC.

Thanks to all those who replied to this week's question. Remember, Team Oracle is open to anyone so if you fancy replying, click to read this week's, and send us your answer.



March 21, 2014 / submitted by The Oracle, United Kingdom
Q.  WHO'D LIKE TO JOIN TEAM ORACLE?

As you may know, we have a weekly feature, Team Oracle, whereby each Friday we open questions of a personal nature to all of you to answer too. Then, the following Friday, I post a selection of the best answers, alongside my own reply.

ANYONE can join in so, if you'd like to, please email your response to the following question, in no more than 250 words, to theoracle@coldplay.com before midnight Thursday 27th March.

I've had a long issue with my temper.... I'm a very forgiving person. Really, I hold very few grudges. But I have a temper as well, and a bad one at that. But recently I've been taking it out on my friend; because I'm fed up with the way she treats me. When she's depressed/angry/sad, I try to listen and help, but when I'm one of those things, she laughs it off or criticizes me. Now, with anyone else, I would get away from them, but this is my only friend. And without her I wouldn't survive school. How can I 1. Stop getting so mad at her 2. Get her to please, stop making things worse for me 3. Calm down? Sydney, USA.

Look forward to seeing your replies.

The Oracle.

Please email your replies to theoracle@coldplay.com
Including your twitter address may result in a follow back.



March 14, 2014 / submitted by Anon, Canada
Q.  TEAM ORACLE QUESTION #159

My brother and I have had a history of fighting/arguing. Sadly there were periods of time in which we stopped talking to each other. As we grew up and became adults (we are both on our 30's) we became more tolerant and understanding. My brother has a really difficult personality. He can be the meanest of all and then all of the the sudden he can be the sweetest.
I'm trying to understanding him, as he has had a rough life full of frustrations and stuff. We've forgiven each other and I've been focusing on his positives and leaving the past in the past.

My brother just called me to tell me that he was going to move to my city and that he was planning to live one week every 3 weeks at my place. He is planning to work nearby he doesn't want to find a place to live. Instead, he's planning to come and live with me. He didn't consult me. He just said he would come and that I could help him.
Now, this worries me because of our personalities and our past fighting. I'm scared that in one of "swing" moods he says the typical harmful things he says about me or about my mom (he and my mom has never got along). Sometimes he calls me and vents all his frustrations with me. I just listen to him. He just wants to get listened to. But I get so sad and my energy so low... he brings up things from the past and I just listen him. So I'm very scared. He knows I might say yes. I always listen to him and try to be supportive but I feel he is taking advantage of that and that he knows I won't say no. But I want to say no.

I know him and I know this is going to be terrible. I'm feeling selfish at the same time. But after a long time, I finally got my own place to live. To live in peace. To try to figure out my own things. Honestly, I don't know what to do. Can you kindly give your opinion? I need an unbiased opinion on this one. I know, I know, he is going to end up staying longer... I simply know that. It really gets me how lay back he is...he was just telling me, "Oh I can stay at your place, then at my sister's, or I can fly to where my parents live." I was like, dude, you should get your own place. But... I'm very upset. Please Oracle. If you could give me your opinion, that would be much appreciate it. Thanks very much.

It's always interesting to read people's answers - I never read them until after I have written my own response - and this question seemed to divide some of us. I have a brother but didn't consider how I would handle this situation myself, I just listened to your anxiety.
For me your answer lies in one of your sentences: "But I want to say no".
So say "no". I know that's literally easier said than done.
I predict your relationship will become more strained and damage will be done if you don't. Just because someone doesn't consult you and announces they are doing something, don't feel you can't interrupt and say "whoa, hang on... this is not actually ok with me".
Now, you do run the risk of an argument or your brother getting angry or not speaking to you but to be frank, that's surely better than you living your life in a way that will make you unhappy? You can still listen to him, support him and help him without totally giving in to what he wants & expects.
My advice to friends who constantly feel bullied - for that's what it is - into doing things they don't want to is to have an ever ready mantra to say when caught off guard: "Let me get back to you on that". It buys you thinking time. Most browbeaters prey on that instant when you're backed into a corner. Very few come back from there and undo what they've felt made to do.
It is not selfish of you to not want your brother to stay; it's selfish of him to decide he is without asking.
You've come a long way and come through many difficulties to get to where you are now. The last thing you need is an overbearing brother to encroach on your space and time and you have every right to say "no". Exercise that right and hopefully you will feel strong & empowered to stand up to him. Once you start to say "no" to him, he may eventually get the message and treat you with the respect you deserve.
Over to you.

First I want to tell you there can be two reasons why he wants to come over at your and you family's place: He can do it because he knows you don't like it, or because he want's to live as peaceful as you.
You said he had been trough a lot of frustrations. It is possible that he want's to live in peace himself, but he doesn't know how.
I think you should help him finding his own place. In both situations that's the best for you and for him. When he has his own place to live, he doesn't have a reason to come over to tease you (in the first situation) or he found his own peaceful place and doesn't need to come over for that (in the second situation).
Let him come over for the first week, and at the last day you tell him that he has to find his own place, and that you want to help him with that. I think he will accept your help. Maybe not immediately, but I'm sure he will.
Goodluck, Isabelle.


I know that sometimes you may think this fact is not right or it may seems that it isn't useful for you. Everything happens for one reason: the knowledge. The fact that you and your brother grew up indifferent to each other brought for both the understanding and the tolerance. I think that you living with him might bring knowledge too. Maybe you can know more and more about him and find out that he's not the person who you think he is. You can even help him to be a good person. I mean Teach him! He's your brother and he loves you.
Be lucky! Roberto.

I think that when a family member is in need, you help. It's like a rule somewhere. Obviously, if there are circumstances that threaten your safety or those around you by having your brother move in with you, that's a different story. If the worst case scenario is that you and your brother are going to argue because he has a moody personality and you will be miserable for a bit, then its kinda just your luck of the draw in life. When and if it gets to the point that it is intolerable for you to have him there, you guys will deal with it at the time. You've had practice at this. Instead of being hypersensitive about it before hand, focus on the good times you will share during the process. I'm one of those people who think family should be there when all others walk out, even if it sucks hard sometimes. I realize not everyone thinks that way, but that's who I am and how I would advise on the matter. Good luck. Focus on the positive and make some really cool memories with your brother. Miranda.

I can't imagine what you and your brother went through the years, but what's clear is that your brother really counts on you, even too much. You said it by yourself, he needs to get his own place as you first were able to do, with time and efforts. He may be scared of that, of trying to build a life without depending on you, his sister and parents.
You have to understand whether you have the strength to help him or not. If it's so important to you to help him to make it through, then just go and do it, with the same determination with which you managed to take care of yourself.
I think that, if you think you can bear it, you could suggest him to move to your city but provided that he finds a place on his own. In exchange, you could arrange a meeting every week to talk with him about his progresses, in order to make him feel he's not alone in this. Or anyway you could find a point/moment of connection enabling both him to feel your support and you to feel free from his constant presence.
Any decision you make, you must be very strict and don't change your mind: convince yourself that you're doing this for his own health, he cannot conduct a happy life keeping on depending from other people, once they won't be there for him he'll feel destroyed, he will fall in front of difficulties. Maybe you could ask a close person of yours (a friend, a relative) to help you doing this.
Advising is always easy, if I was you I would find it very difficult too. Don't forget WHY you're doing this, and everything will appear clearer.
Here's a lot of people squeezing their brains and opening their hearts to help you, you're not alone.
A big hug. Giulia.

You have already answered the question yourself: You do not want to have your brother stay at your place. Now, the reason why you asked the Oracle for help, is because you need someone to support your decision. If I were in your shoes, I would feel just like you feel. As you have mentioned, you need your own space, a house of your own. I bet your brother is old enough to depend on himself. I agree that human beings should not be selfish, but your well-being is at risk here. If your brother goes to your place, instability will reign what should be your home sweet home. If you become unstable, you will not be able to help others, since you will be brought down. You can help others when you feel good yourself. If helping someone else blurs your happiness, I do not think is worth a shot. That is not the way to go. Once you get done reading this, say no to your brother, and do not let him convince you to say yes. He will surely say how bad your attitude is, make you feel guilty, in order to get a yes from you. You will have to confront him, and even if the conversation ends badly, you still have to say no. This way he will have no other chance but to try other options. Since he thinks you will say yes, he does not consider other possibilities. Much love, Carolina.

There are always moments in life where it's necessary to say no. This may be one of those moments. You can't always be trying to make everyone else happy; you have to make yourself happy first. Being content with yourself spreads positivity and happiness on its own! Unhappiness can spread as well, and you may inadvertently bring down those around you, including your brother. The best way to build up your relationship with your brother as he moves into town may be to offer to him assistance in getting a start in the new town, rather than a home where he can slack off. You have lived there already and know the town, you would be perfect to introduce him to it. The key is to not let him become reliant on you, but at the same time let him know that you will be there to guide him whenever he needs help. Make sure that he learns from his mistakes, that way he does not come back with the same issues again and again. He is your brother after all. Although you guys have had your difficulties, now is the perfect time for you to open up to him about how you truly feel about your relationship together. The difficult past does not have to define the future, and understanding each other's sides of the story may lead to a strengthening of your relationship.
Good luck from one brother to another, Ryan, USA.

I do understand your feelings nut my advise for you is: You are not selfish, if you tell your brother that he can't live with you. It is good to be supportive of your family but not at the costs of your own peace of mind. There are plenty of other ways you can be there for your brother. Your home is the one place where you should feel at peace and untroubled. You shouldn't let anyone disturb that. Not even family.
Be brave and be selfish (a bit)! You are not a help for anyone, if you aren't feeling strong yourself.
All the best, Anne.


All sibling relationships have their ups and downs, it sounds like you and your brother have been through a lot. But like you said, you're both in your 30's now and you have your own place for a reason. I know it's hard, but if deep down your gut is telling you to say 'no' to him, you really must try and listen to it. I think it's very rude of him to just invite himself over to stay with you, even if he is your brother. Try to explain how you feel and I'm sure that in the end he'll appreciate you being honest and sticking up for yourself. Good luck! Amanda.

This is a dilly! What surprises me is how quickly you are willing to let him do this! You pay the rent or mortgage, why are you letting him decide this?? You may want to ask him for a nominal fee for the time he spends with you, and ask when this visitation will begin and end, since it is not just a weekend visit. True he is family, but while being family does come with an unwritten code of hospitality, it would be wrong for anyone to presume upon it for an extended period of time. Don't let him, or you may end up being the doormat at your own home. Make it clear from the start this is your home YOU DECIDE if or when he will visit, and for how long. He may balk at your being independent from him, but you do need to assert yourself, and this will take time for him to adjust to, you may get a cold shoulder, but at least you will not have to worry about your peace being disrupted. Hope you can feel empowered enough to keep your space yours. Good Luck, Laurie.

Honestly sometimes I would be glad to have a brother. Sadly with this history of troubles and fighting the only thing you can tell him is 'No.' You are not his mother, and even if he wants to move home again after a time off he would have to ask in a proper way. I wonder if he gave a thought about how it should work, you are not a hotel!
The way you describe him reminds me on someone I knew well and I can imagine how stressful the situation was for you. I don't say he will never change, but this would not be a good start for trying it. Tell him this, you are glad you both have the situation like it is now, his move into your house probably could only damage your contact.
You can welcome him in your city, for sure, help him finding another place to stay (maybe someone of your friends knows something), offer him some support during his time there, you can invite him, introduce him to your acquaintances. To move to you is too much for you at the moment, show him your limit. Make clear for you it is the question to work on a sister and brother relationship with a future. He should be interested in this as well, more interested than in a (probably in his opinion) cheap place to live but risk new family troubles. A second forgive would not be easier. Best wishes. L. Q.

I think you have defined what you, in fact, want to do. You want to say no. What you don't know is if saying no is the best thing for him, and you definitely want the best for him, otherwise you wouldn't care and you'd simply say no. But, in my opinion, this is not so hard, because saying no is the best you can do, not only for yourself, but also and especially for him. Why? You have said that he just made a really important decision involving you both, without consulting you. But he is your brother, so he must treat you with respect. And, even though you may think that saying yes will help him more than the opposite, I don't think like that. By saying no, you'll teach him that if he wants something, he needs to deserve it. And you can say yes, but he has to deserve that answer, he has to treat you respectfully. Your home, your rules. My advise? Talk to him, let him know how you feel and show him that if he wants your help, he must deserve it. He may get upset, but he'll eventually understand that having a good relationship with his sibling makes everything better. Good luck! Love, Ana from Portugal.

Thanks to all those who replied to this week's question. Remember, Team Oracle is open to anyone so if you fancy replying, click to read this week's, and send us your answer.



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