Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I am free, single and in deep, embarrassing trouble. I'm in my early 30s, have two girlfriends in town and a young girlfriend, 22, who is very casual. I was just teaching her the ropes, at her request.
I have been having frequent sex with all three women -- I love each one in a different way -- but I have encountered a problem: I have a case of "critters" and my doctor sent me to the pharmacy for the cure today. I am going to be OK after treatments of medicated shampoo and washing my clothes and bedsheets with hot water, I just don't know what to do about my girlfriends. One of them gave it to me, but which one? Do I tell them all, or what? Could I just wait until the guilty one confesses? I also have this little ray of hope: could I have gotten it from a wet towel at the gym? -- Bad Boy, St. Vital
Dear Bad Boy: The miniature zoo you are referring to is called pediculosis pubis, not pediculosis towelis, as it is most often spread through the close contact of pubic areas, not towels. People usually transfer the "critters," more often called crabs, during sex. In the very rarest of incidences, people have gotten them from towels, but usually towels shared by two people who have just been getting busy. Who else uses your towels besides girlfriends? Do you have roommates? I'm thinking likely not, at your age and with your lifestyle.
Here's the deal: You can't have sex with anybody until you get this mystery cleared up and everybody involved gets fixed up. There can still be lingering trouble over a period of two weeks to a month with a new generation springing from eggs or "nits," which didn't get destroyed in the first shampoo applications.
You need to explain to all three women, if you haven't already, that you are non-monogamous and understand they may also be seeing others. This problem could be spreading elsewhere. Just make the three phone calls and get it over with. Email and texts are easily forwarded, and that could make things way more embarrassing than speaking privately on the phone.
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: This is not your typical request for advice from a "love coach," but it certainly relates to love -- of my mom. I am the eldest daughter in my family and am always watching out for my parents who are now in their 80s. Both are healthy, but my mom is starting to lose mobility: she doesn't leave the house for days on end and has difficulty getting in out of chairs and up and down the stairs.
I'd like to figure out a way to get her to be more active, especially in the winter when she doesn't get a chance to walk much or get any exercise at all -- she's been hibernating and going downhill. I'm not sure how to approach this issue, or if there are facilities that cater to her age group. I am worried she will start to have serious problems walking in the near future if she doesn't start to get active soon and this would seriously diminish her quality of life. She hates exercising all alone. -- Concerned Daughter, South End
Dear Concerned Daughter: You mom needs a reason to move. This winter has been hard on us all, but particularly rough for older folks who couldn't afford to go out on the snow and ice and hazard a fall and a broken hip. If you push her to walk in the neighbourhood alone, it's not going to happen for long. She needs a friend to go with her to a gym, such as Reh-Fit Fitness Centre at 1390 Taylor Ave., where they have medical personnel and structured classes and walking on a special track. Can you put the word out to close relatives and her closest friends to find a fitness companion, and even set up her payment up as a gift from you if she doesn't have much money? She will need to spring for good gym shoes from a place that measures her and is knowledgeable about feet like Canadian Footwear at 128 Adelaide St.
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