Dear Annie: I am 15 years old and in the 10th grade. I have two best friends.
One of them, Alyssa, is a gorgeous and nice girl with few flaws. She’s the one the guys always fall for.
But she randomly ignores me or seems really mad at me, especially in the morning. In the afternoon, things are fine.
She treats our other best friend great all the time, so I guess it’s just me.
I don’t get it. Our other friend has noticed it, too, and doesn’t think it’s right. She says it’s because sometimes a guy will like me, as well as Alyssa.
I really don’t want to lose Alyssa as a best friend, but I don’t know what to do except confront her and I’d rather not. I could use some advice. — Hurting BFF
Dear Hurting: Confrontation often indicates speaking with anger.
But you can talk to Alyssa in a civil tone, with consideration, and simply tell her how much it hurts when she treats you unkindly.
Ask if there is something you can do to repair the damage that is happening to your friendship. She may deny behaving this way, but it will get her to pay more attention and allow you to remind her gently when she does it again.
Dear Annie: I read your column every day, so I have to ask: Do all men constantly look at porn on the Internet?
I’ve been married 28 years, and our kids are grown and out of the house.
In the past few years, sex has been great, but my husband has begun asking me to do different things in the bedroom.
So I looked at his Internet searches and discovered he’s been looking at porn nearly every day.
This makes me sick to my stomach, and I really don’t want to have sex with him.
I guess it’s better than him cheating on me with someone else, but seriously, is this what most men do? — Flustered Wife
Dear Flustered: Ah, well, probably. Not all men, mind you.
But based on our mail, we’d have to say there’s a sizeable number of guys who check out online porn in the same casual way you’d get a cup of coffee.
In most instances, it’s within normal male behavior, and it can add spice to a marriage to vary one’s routine.
However, here are some signs that it’s a problem: Your husband would rather be online than with you; he begins a cyber-affair; he spends more than your budget can afford on porn sites; he asks you to perform in the bedroom in ways that are degrading or dangerous; his expectations of your sexual life and behavior are unrealistic, overly fantasized or borderline abusive.
Dear Annie: I read the letter from Unhappy Parents, whose daughter is being bullied. We had similar problems with our fourth-grader. When we reported it to the office and the teacher, the bullying only became worse.
Although the verbal abuse stopped briefly, she was ostracized and ignored during lunch and recess by her classmates because her friends were afraid to get on the wrong side of the bullies.
I strongly recommend the website bullies2buddies.com for a sure-fire way to make it stop.
It took two weeks and a couple of false starts, but she is no longer bullied and now has the tools to stop any future bullying behavior.
It was a terrific boost for her self-esteem because it taught her to solve the problem herself. Hope this helps. — Mililani, Hawaii
Dear Hawaii: Thanks for the recommendation.
We hope children, parents and teachers will check out the website.
Please e-mail your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org, or write to: Annie’s Mailbox, P.O. Box 118190, Chicago, IL 60611.