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N O V E M B E R '98

Dear msX,
I want to bring a lot of my friends to Jesus Christ. But I'm not sure how to do it. Some don't want to go to a youth group. How should I handle this?
Young Christian

Dear Young Christian,
It is really a wonderful thing that you have found such joy in your religion. If your friends witness your faith and joy, perhaps that will inspire them to explore their own spirituality. However, I think you have to let people come to their own conclusions where religion is concerned. If they choose to follow you based on what they believe, it will be ultimately more rewarding for all than if you pushed your own beliefs at them.

Have faith,


Dear msX,
My boyfriend and I argue a lot but I know and he knows that arguments are going to happen I'm just so afraid of losing him. PLEASE tell me what I should do?
Arguing and Afraid

Dear Arguing and Afraid,
Let me let you in on something. Not arguing is better than arguing even if it means being alone. However much you argue now, you can multiply that amount by ten for each year you stay together. What on earth are you afraid of losing, an adversary?

Find someone you're compatible with. Someone who argues ONLY when it's important. Someone who can give you security so that you know that when you argue, it's not going to be the end of the relationship. Relationships should be fun and arguing is not.

Mellow out,


Dear msX,
My parents are so excited about me going away to college next fall but the truth is I'm devastated about leaving everyone. What should I do??
Signed, Devastated

Dear Devastated,
Lots of people go off to college with butterflies in their stomachs and tears in their eyes. Most get over it and end up having the time of their lives. Some don't. For lots of reasons...because they weren't ready for it, because they were more comfortable in their own hometown, because they still needed to live with their families.

You don't say why your parents are so excited. Are they reclaiming your bedroom as a den or are they merely happy you are getting this opportunity to educate yourself in a new place?

I think you should give it a try. You could always transfer back to the local college, if that's what you decide. But, if you chicken out now, you'll never know what could have been and you may have regrets later on.
Of course, you should open up to your parents, give them a little foreshadowing that out-of-town may not be for you. Tell them you'll give it a shot, but you want to know that you can come home if it's not for you.

I am betting that if you give it a shot, you just may love the experience!
Good luck,


Dear msX,
Lately, I just don't want to be near my old friends any more. I want new friends, But I don't want to hurt my other friends that I've been friends with for so long. What should I do? I'm bored with my other friends, And lately they seem so annoying, and Immature. Please help!!
Signed, Friend

Dear Friend,
Are you sure this is an either/or situation? Do you have to discard the old friends to make room for new ones? In my mind, you can never have enough people to call your friends.

Maybe you are outgrowing some of your present friends. Maybe you just need a vacation from them? Could be it's time to meet some new bodies. How about doing something on your own to broaden your horizons and meet people, something you can do without any of your present buddies? Take a dance class, join a club, take up running, biking, chess, just put yourself out into situations where you can meet people. With some new interests and new people in your life, you may then have some good stories to share with your old friends that will spice up the time you spend together. Maybe you'll inspire them to take some grownup steps, too.

As for hurting their feelings, if you keep yourself honestly busy, you will have no reason to feel guilty about giving your old pals less of your time. It is only when we lie and make excuses to avoid seeing someone that we hurt them. If you've got something to do that's important to you, a friend should understand.

Hope you meet some interesting people,


Dear msX,
Here goes-it's not really a big deal yet but I thought maybe Iíd get a jump on it.

Well, Iíve been with my current boyfriend ("Eric") for 8 months now, they have been the 8 best months of my life because he replaced a former best friend that made me so depressed. Anyway, he is only the 2nd boyfriend Iíve ever had (Iím 16) and the other one("Brian) was also a longer relationship of 6 months. I obsessed over Brian for nearly a year before we had a sort of magical coming together but I don't think I was ready for the relationship and couldnít really handle having him as more then a friend. I couldn't sort things out with myself and ended up neglecting him to the point to where he broke up with me.
Before that we were very close as friends and after we became enemies for over a year. In that time I met Eric and fell in love with him. I was completely convinced that my feelings for Brian were purely superficial and I was completely over him. I've been talking to him though, in the last couple months and realize what drew me to him in the first place, and that I am still attracted to him. I mention him every day or two in casual conversation and it bothers Eric.

Brian and I talk on the phone regularly and him being an excellent listener and almost counselor, I find myself confiding in him and we're getting closer. I know I would be ready for a relationship with him but I love Eric and don't want to do anything to ruin our relationship.

I don't see Brian outside of school ever, but I know the topic of us doing stuff outside of school as friends is going to come up, and I am afraid that it might undermine my relationship with Eric. He is the best thing that happened to me in a very long time and is my best friend and boyfriend. I realize that I could handle a romantic relationship with Brian now and am fairly sure it would be a wonderful relationship, on a closer and more understood level then my current one, because I can talk about things more with Brian then Eric I have found. I don't know what to do

thanks - about to be torn

Dear About to be Torn,
You say that you have feelings for both Brian and Eric. Is there any reason why you can't continue to have both guys in your life? Monogamy is for when you're sexually active. If that's not the case, there should be no reason why you cannot have friendships with both Brian and Eric. There will come a point when you know which one, if any, you really want to commit to. Until then, you are no one's property and are entitled choose who you spend time with in person and on the phone. Listen to your feelings when you say you have doubts over which guy you want. Don't compromise yourself by being forced into making a choice before you really know what you want.

I hope this helps,


Dear msX,
I'm 18 years old and I've been going with my boyfriend for 4 months now. Every time we have sex, it takes him a long time to ejaculate. He says that he has always had that problem. Is there anything he could do about that?
Signed, Eighteen

Dear Eighteen,
There are many women who would not see this as a problem. Their problem is usually the reverse. However, it can be wearing, both physically and emotionally, and can make sex seem like work rather than play. And, I would not make light of it. How long is too long? Are you physically hurt by the prolonged sexual contact? Or, perhaps you feel that if you knew the right thing to do, he would reach his climax sooner.

I don't know if this is a medical problem. Are you aware that alcohol and drugs can have an adverse affect on a man's performance? If the two of you, together or separately, are getting high, you should understand that substance abuse can make it difficult for some men to achieve orgasm. Even legal, prescribed-by-doctor drugs, can have an impact on person's sexual performance.

I think you and your boyfriend need to explore what turns each other on. Get the idea that ejaculation is the only outcome for sexual contact out of your heads. Communication is the best aphrodisiac known to man (and woman). If, after that, it is still a problem, he should consult a urologist to see if there is a physical reason behind this.

Again, many women would not see this as a problem.
Good luck,


Dear msX,
My problem isnít very serious at all. You see Iím 14 and my parents wont let me date. All my friends at school do but I can't. My parents wont let me go to the mall or movies without an adult with us at all times either. I think their too strict and Iíve tried talking to them about it but they just donít listen. They even get mad when I "bug" them about it. I donít know what to do because Iíve tried everything and I donít want to date behind their back. They say i canot date till Iím 16. I'll be in 10th grade then and I think thats ridiculous! I'm the first child so maybe their just trying to hold on to me I donít know! HELP!!!
wants to date

Dear Wants to Date,
You're right, sweetie, this not an enormous problem. But, it bothers you and that's pretty natural. You're in a growing phase now and sometimes it is hard for parents to catch-up to their kids maturation. They do not see how you are getting older and, when they do notice it, it frightens the hell out of them. Their rules are out of love and the desire to protect you from many really scary things that are out in the big bad world.

How are you going to get through these next couple of years? I suggest you invite friends into your home so that your parents can see them and get to know them. Little by little, show them you're mature and you will be in a better position to negotiate new rules with them. Believe me, you are not the only one with this situation.

BTW, what's your rush? Life expectancy for you will be up in your eighties. You will be spending the bulk of your life as a grownup. You only have a few left to be a kid. Enjoy these kid years while you have them. You have alot of dating years ahead. They are not always the carefree, exciting times you think they are.

Take care,





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