My daughter's nails

Discussions relating to the classical guitar which don't fit elsewhere.
Laudiesdad69
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My daughter's nails

Post by Laudiesdad69 » Mon Mar 20, 2017 8:06 pm

My daughter came by today wanting me to give her a lesson. She just got her nails done and doesn't even realize that she is digging her left hand nails into the finger board. I told her that she needed to cut the nails on her left hand. She refused, saying " I just got them done".
So, I told her that if she wants to play guitar with me she has to cut them, or else I am not going to be a part of it. I just gave her the guitar for her birthday about a month ago, and she is leaving nail marks on the finger board. She isn't the sharpest tool in the shed, but her vanity is right up with the Kardashians.
We've gone through this before, and she eventually cut them. But I am getting tired of her waiting weeks for fake nails to be cut, and her not playing. Then when she wants to play, I have to go and show her everything from the previous lessons as she can't remember what to play. Really frustrating for me.
I feel that what I am doing with her is wasting my time, because she forgets and has to start from square one. The more I think about it, the angrier I get. I feel like I wasted a good guitar on her now that she isn't going to play for the next several weeks. I am thinking about just dumping her as a lesson. My time is valuable and this is just a waste. This happen to any of you? Any suggestions.

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jhapgood
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Re: My daughter's nails

Post by jhapgood » Mon Mar 20, 2017 8:15 pm

Laudiesdad69,

I know in many cases it is difficult for parents to also be coaches/teachers/instructors of their own children. I wonder if your best avenue wouldn't be to see if she is interested in taking lessons from someone else nearby. Then the issue could be broached by the new instructor, and she might be more receptive to the instructor's suggestion, since it's not her dad telling her what to do, lol. Remember the saying, "A prophet is not respected in his own land." Sort of what may be happening here with your daughter.

Kind Regards,

Joe
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Dustin McKinney
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Re: My daughter's nails

Post by Dustin McKinney » Mon Mar 20, 2017 8:18 pm

I run a side business that is a music studio. Most of my students are music theory/composition and private voice, but I do have a strict policy written into my contracts. Students pay for lessons a month at a time and up front. Students are expected to show up to their scheduled lesson. If there is a conflict, it is their responsibility to find another student to switch with(I do have a studio directory), and they are expected to show up prepared. It is explained that a 30 minute lesson once a week does not make a musician, and it takes consistent practice. If a student is unprepared for their lesson, they will be asked to excuse themselves and to show up prepared the next time. 3 strike rule, either miss 3 lessons, come unprepared 3 times, or any combo of the two circumstances, and the student is kicked out of the studio. It's complicated being your own daughter, but it's a waste of time and money if the student is unprepared. I morally cannot collect payment from a student with whom I am not teaching.
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Isabelle Frizac
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Re: My daughter's nails

Post by Isabelle Frizac » Mon Mar 20, 2017 8:36 pm

Do not teach your daughter as long as she has long nails in her left hand.
She must choose: be a Kardashian (or other) or want to learn.

The day she will be decided, she will come back to ask you and will agree to cut her nails. It 's all about maturity!

She will have the same problem with the piano, violin, etc. and even practice some sports (judo, karate ...).

Good luck !

:bye:
keep hope !
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Laudiesdad69
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Re: My daughter's nails

Post by Laudiesdad69 » Mon Mar 20, 2017 10:07 pm

Thanks everyone, it's really disheartening to see this guitar that I paid good money for, getting "dug in" marks on he fretboard. I told her that when she is ready to cut those nails, I will be more than happy to teach her again. It is a shame that she would rather be "pretty" than pursue the instrument. I've been working on the same Aguado's study with her for two months and she almost has the whole thing, or did have until she took two weeks off for her "beauty" regimen.
I've tried to introduce new material to her as well, and she says she doesn't want to until she has Aguado's mastered i.e. "Perfect". This isn't the first time this has happened. She refuses to take the guitar home for practice, but usually comes by every evening for dinner and guitar. We can't afford to pay for her a real instructor. My heart is heavy because she has such potential and she would rather do what she wants to do. The idea was to do this for a year and then she could find an instructor (whom she would pay). I figured that I could give her the basics, and then her money would go farther with a certified instructor.
I put the guitar back in its case. No sense in having it develop a crack just sitting in the stand. Back in the humidified case it goes. The only long nails I like to see on any woman is on the right hand! Means she can play guitar. I told her she could keep the right hand, but hat didn't go over well:(

dory
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Re: My daughter's nails

Post by dory » Mon Mar 20, 2017 10:36 pm

Your daughter's problem goes way beyond nails. Obviously there is a lot of rebellion going on. In addition if you are calling her not sharp you are obviously getting very frustrated. I would run not walk to someone else to teach your daughter if I were you, although I would love to know if your daughter begged you for a guitar or if you gave her one hoping she would play. If it is the latter the future doesn't look great for guitar at the present moment. If it is the former another teacher could be a tremendous help. Now for the nails. I never cared about fancy manicured, but as a teenage girl I did wear skin tight pants and excessive makeup so I can understand the pressure to fit in. If she wants to go on with the guitar I would suggest learning with no or very short nails on the right hand. Right hand nails ate nice but are absolutely not necesssry. Then when the nails on both hands match go to an expensive manicurist and get a fancy nail job, complete with decals, nail jewelry (sparkly pieces of metal or glass that can be embedded in nail polish-- the whole works to show her that short nails can also be "cute. " You may have to go to a really good minicurist the first time, finding someone who understands teenage psychology. If your daughter sees that short nails can also be cute she may change her attitude. If not, she can always learn later when she is less concerned about minor details of physical appearance.
Dory

Laudiesdad69
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Re: My daughter's nail

Post by Laudiesdad69 » Tue Mar 21, 2017 1:05 am

I tried to tell her that if she goes another month without playing it will likely be like starting from square one. And yes, she asked for the guitar. She brought up the idea of playing to me, and as she can't afford a guitar, let alone lessons, I bought her a guitar ( twice as the first guitar was just a little too small 3/4 size, which she preferred and picked herself, and decided That it was too small, and I gave her one I had just bought as I didn't have money to buy another one at that point- but It is full size). And yes when she applies herself she does fantastic.

I wish I was dealing with a teenager, but she is 31 years old. Her priorities aren't right in this and many other areas. It's just becoming too much of a headache for me. I think that if she had to pay for lessons herself that she would take it a little more seriously. I mean if she just wanted to play a few chords, I would have got her a steel string and a chord book. But it is she that wanted to learn to play with her fingers and wanted to do classical. She is not a big rock-n- roll fan. She was trying to play with the nails on her fretting hand and was digging into the wood. I give up. Two months on the same Aguado's study has me starting to burn out. I guess there is also the frustration of her not being simply happy to raise the two kids she already has and thinks she needs to be out there trying to meet some guy. Thumbs up if she can find one with a job. But that's another story which I won't get into now.

BellyDoc
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Re: My daughter's nails

Post by BellyDoc » Tue Mar 21, 2017 1:35 am

Speaking as a parent, a doctor, and an arbitrator at the table of workplace conflicts of many types, my opinion is that many kinds of problems can be solved by figuring out how to express the emotional impact of what's going on without letting the emotional impact dictate the mode of expression.

You have eloquently stated here how frustrated you are, and I can sense that for you, this isn't just about guitar, but about a young person missing an opportunity to use the guitar as a motivator for developing discipline in an enjoyable manner. I totally get that. Does she?

I apologize if you've done this already, but what I would do if this were my daughter (and if you throw in a piano, and some other variables... it is...) is to have a sit down and a heart to heart.

"Honey, this is hard for me because I'm not just your guitar teacher, I'm also your dad and I'm not going to be able to separate these two roles. I'm not just trying to share my love of this instrument and it's music, but I'm also trying to let it be a doorway into a world of more adult rewards. Adults learn to feel best about the most hard won accomplishments, and the rewards are enjoyed even more BECAUSE they take a long time to earn. Learning guitar is a wonderful example of this kind of accomplishment, and I believe that as you learn not only guitar, but how to enjoy the rewards of investing yourself long term, you'll be able to use that same skill in many other parts of your life. I know you'd eventually find this kind of thing true for yourself, but I would love to be able to share this experience with you using the guitar. However, if it's too strange to be my daughter AND my student, I'd totally understand, and if you think you'd learn better with another teacher, I wouldn't be insulted. I love you and I'll still enjoy watching you learn and grow!"


Again... sorry if I'm picking at the already-picked-over areas. It's just really easy to forget to say what you feel, and instead just let how you feel change the way that you say what you think... if that makes sense.
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Laudiesdad69
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Re: My daughter's nails

Post by Laudiesdad69 » Tue Mar 21, 2017 2:16 am

Great suggestion BellyDoc. It's really frustrating because she is so close to where she wants to be with this first piece. She is a perfectionist, and that is why she doesn't want to move on from Aguado's yet. If never seen anybody just soak it up like a sponge the way that she does. She got the 3/4 size guitar for early X-Mas and the full size one I gave her at the end of January. She had problems with regular nylon and a HT nylon strings because the trebles were too big around for her skinny fingers. Then I tried LaBella 2001 Flamenco strings in hard tension and they are smaller diameter and she really took off after that. New guitar and new strings.
If she wants to continue that is fine with me. But I am not going to be a party to ruining a finger board. I guess I will just have to ask her how important CG is to her, and if she wants to continue with short nails then I will be happy to help her. If not we will stop so that I'm not wasting my time ( and hers). It's like a student who refuses to learn to read scores. Yes I can show you measure by measure until you can play a piece, but your not really learning anything other than how to mimic another guitarist. It was such a big boost to her self esteem. She was so proud of herself. But at some point she needs to figure out whether or not her self esteem comes from her accomplishments, orwhether it comes from being with a group of girlfriends hanging out in a bar. I really wish she would listen to Dr. Laura for an hour or two.

dtoh
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Re: My daughter's nails

Post by dtoh » Tue Mar 21, 2017 4:42 am

All I can say is that if you expect someone to follow the suggestions of a family member (particularly a spouse or parent), then you're an idiot.... and if you get upset when they don't then you're a total moron. Nothing personal. Just speaking from experience :D

And speaking of making suggestions to a family member about their nails, here is a helpful instructional video.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-4EDhdAHrOg

Laudiesdad69
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Re: My daughter's nails

Post by Laudiesdad69 » Tue Mar 21, 2017 5:39 am

dtoh wrote:All I can say is that if you expect someone to follow the suggestions of a family member (particularly a spouse or parent), then you're an idiot.... and if you get upset when they don't then you're a total moron. Nothing personal. Just speaking from experience :D

And speaking of making suggestions to a family member about their nails, here is a helpful instructional video.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-4EDhdAHrOg
That was a good one and just what I needed.

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twang
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Re: My daughter's nails

Post by twang » Tue Mar 21, 2017 12:37 pm

Laudiesdad69 wrote: I just gave her the guitar for her birthday about a month ago, and she is leaving nail marks on the finger board.
Umm, if it's her guitar, then it's her choice to ruin it or not. Point out the consequences of her actions, if you must, but let her choose and suffer any consequences. Let it go.
Laudiesdad69 wrote: So, I told her that if she wants to play guitar with me she has to cut them, or else I am not going to be a part of it.
Umm, the only thing you have control over is your own actions. If that is your position then state it simply and be true to your word. It doesn't have to be an emotional discussion. Let it go.
Laudiesdad69 wrote: But I am getting tired of her waiting weeks for fake nails to be cut, and her not playing. Then when she wants to play, I have to go and show her everything from the previous lessons as she can't remember what to play. Really frustrating for me.
I feel that what I am doing with her is wasting my time, because she forgets and has to start from square one. The more I think about it, the angrier I get. I feel like I wasted a good guitar on her now that she isn't going to play for the next several weeks. I am thinking about just dumping her as a lesson. My time is valuable and this is just a waste. This happen to any of you? Any suggestions.
Umm, It sounds to me like you have more invested in this than she does. She has to come to it on her own, or not. _You_ have to be OK with whatever _she_ chooses. Let it go.
"An amateur is he who takes up the study of an instrument as a relaxation from his serious occupations." -- Sor

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Mike Atkinson
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Re: My daughter's nails

Post by Mike Atkinson » Tue Mar 21, 2017 3:54 pm

My suggestion is you cherish your time with your daughter.
It is far more valuable than nail impressions on a fingerboard.
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Tom Wimsatt
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Re: My daughter's nails

Post by Tom Wimsatt » Tue Mar 21, 2017 4:23 pm

michaeledward64 wrote:My suggestion is you cherish your time with your daughter.
It is far more valuable than nail impressions on a fingerboard.
I agree. Pick your battles.....

celestemcc
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Re: My daughter's nails

Post by celestemcc » Tue Mar 21, 2017 5:40 pm

Well: she's no teenager, which changes things a little. Adult students are always harder to teach, they're so much more perfectionist and demand so much more of themselves, and the nails may be a way of avoiding the responsibility of having to play the piece "Perfectly".

Perhaps that heart-to-heart might include reassuring her that it's not about perfection! You can play, you're her role model, and it's so hard for any student to accept, at times, that it's a slow process, and it'll be a while till she can play like Dad, and that's perfectly fine!

But do stick to your guns about the nails and refusing to teach. Picking your battles is one thing with a child or teenager, but with a responsible adult, it's different. Yes, it's her guitar; but if she's refusing to take it home to practice, I admit I question her commitment. (Unless there's some extenuating circumstance?) Perhaps, even in adulthood, she just wants to please you? If it's more about spending time together, there are other things you can do, not just the guitar lessons, and once reassured, she may come around again wanting to learn.
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