Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I'm all messed up. I just found out this afternoon that my teacher and my mother are seeing each other. I saw them six blocks away from my school necking in the car. I was taking my bike for a spin. I would recognize my teacher's cool car anywhere, as I've always liked it a lot. I drove past, and thought I saw him kissing a woman with my mother's bright red hair. Then I drove back and sure enough, it was them in the car necking. They didn't see me and I pedalled away fast. What should I say to her? -- Upset, Winnipeg
Dear Upset: Say something like this: "When I was riding my bike, I saw you and Mr. So-and-So parked and kissing in the car. Please tell me what is going on. I need to know the truth so I can protect myself from talk at school." Then wait. It is her turn to talk. Listen to everything she has to say before you tell her you what you honestly think, without calling any names. That is the only way this is going to work out between you. If it is not a serious relationship, ask her to stop. If it is serious, you may have to get used to this new relationship, and you may end up with him as part of your family constellation, which would be awkward at first, but could turn out to be OK. If you can't say the words, write her a note.
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I'm 74 and my lady friend is 69. She doesn't want to take me ballroom dancing as she already has an established dance partner, who is a platonic friend. At this late date, I am feeling pangs of jealousy in my life, especially on the nights they go dancing and he holds her in his arms. What can I do, without looking like a jealous fool? -- Decent Dancer, Elmwood
Dear Decent: Think of her ballroom dancing as a sport. She is used to her partner and comfortable with him. But then, ask her to go dancing with you at different times, perhaps in a different place for romantic dancing. Quietly take a few private lessons ahead of time and brush up on the steps so you can impress her your first time out.
Questions or comments? Please email firstname.lastname@example.org or send letters c/o Miss Lonelyhearts, 1355 Mountain Ave. Winnipeg R2X 3B6