Dat­ing be­hind par­ents’ back won’t prove teen’s ma­tu­rity.

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - ISLAND WEEKEND - Abi­gail Van Buren Dear Abby is writ­ten by Abi­gail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips

DEAR ABBY: My boyfriend, “Ai­dan,” and I have been dat­ing for three months. I want to tell my par­ents, but I don’t know how.

They say I’m too young and im­ma­ture to date. I’ll be 16 in five months. They say Ai­dan is ob­sessed with me and they don’t want me stay­ing in an un­healthy re­la­tion­ship.

My par­ents think I’m not talk­ing to Ai­dan, but I re­ally am. I want to show them I’m ma­ture enough for a re­la­tion­ship. All they keep say­ing is I need to be “re­al­is­tic” and “re­spect­ful.” I’m more re­spect­ful than half the peo­ple I know.

I don’t want to keep this from my par­ents any­more. What should I do? — TEEN GIRL IN ILLI­NOIS

DEAR TEEN GIRL: When par­ents say a teen is too young to date, they aren’t talk­ing about the num­ber of can­dles on her birth­day cake. If your par­ents are wor­ried that Ai­dan is “ob­sessed,” they must have a rea­son.

Sneak­ing around isn’t a way to gain any­one’s con­fi­dence. Teens show they are ma­ture and re­spon­si­ble enough to han­dle the priv­i­lege of dat­ing by be­ing open, hon­est, com­mu­ni­cat­ing their feel­ings, lis­ten­ing re­spect­fully to the opin­ions of oth­ers, and shoul­der­ing re­spon­si­bil­ity. If

you start now, you may be able to con­vince your par­ents that you’re ready.

DEAR ABBY: I have been tak­ing trips with a friend for a few years. We share a room and usu­ally have a good time. Un­for­tu­nately, my friend is cheap. She fights for ev­ery dol­lar ev­ery day of the year even though she is very well off.

Lately she has be­come worse. Dur­ing the last tour we took, she “made lunch” off the break­fast buf­fets in the ho­tels where we stayed, although most of them had signs posted say­ing that food should not be taken out. Not once, not twice, but ev­ery sin­gle day she packed a sand­wich, fruit and cof­fee so she wouldn’t have to buy lunch. I asked her to please not do it, but she brushed me off.

I like her, but I hate feel­ing ashamed of her. I be­lieve in do­ing the right thing, and do­ing unto oth­ers what I would like them to do unto me, and I have

reached the point where I just don’t want to travel with her. Any ad­vice? — CAL­I­FOR­NIA TRAV­ELLER

DEAR TRAV­ELLER: Yes. Tell your friend you have now taken your last trip to­gether, and then tell her ex­actly why.

DEAR ABBY: I see so many young girls wear “spike” heels. I know they think they look glam­ourous, but a word of ad­vice: learn to walk in them at home. Girls, you look like ducks, walk­ing with your knees bent be­cause the heels are so high and you haven’t prac­tised. I know what I’m talk­ing about be­cause those heels were in style when I was young. — SMART LADY IN TEN­NESSEE

DEAR SMART LADY: There is noth­ing wrong with that ad­vice. Prac­tise makes per­fect. How­ever, al­low me to add another sug­ges­tion. When I buy a pair of spike heels (and I do own a few), the first thing I do is take them to my shoe­maker and have the heels cut down a quar­ter of an inch, which makes them more com­fort­able — and safer — to walk in. (If I broke an an­kle they’d have to shoot me, be­cause I’d never race again.)

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