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This article was published 4/11/2011 (2062 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
DEAR MISS LONELYHEARTS: I'm 19 and have a big problem. I'm the daughter of a woman with a new "boyfriend' even though he's ancient -- probably in his middle 40s -- and he stares at me when she's out of the room. I have a good body, but I don't dress to show it off. Still, he looks me up and down and stops at my boobs and stares. He doesn't care what I feel. What do I say or do to make him stop? -- Upset Daughter, Winnipeg
Dear Upset: You say, "WHAT are you staring at? I'm going to tell my mother!" and then march right into the other room and tell her assertively, "Your boyfriend is staring at my body again, and it's creeping me out. Please get him to leave our house." Once you shine a light on anybody's who's gawking or leering at you, and trusting you won't tell your parent, the gawker pretty much has to stop. Also, you won't look like a possible victim and it might help to get rid of the creep -- if your mom knows. As long as she doesn't know, she can't react to it. If she ignores you and tells you that you're making it up, and you feel you're in danger from this guy, could you stay with your dad or get a place with some friends? At least put a lock on your door.
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I got hurt in a car accident two years ago and one of my legs is badly scarred. It's time to take my clothes off with my new love and I have been procrastinating because they are ugly scars and still red. Do you have any suggestions for me as I can't leave my jeans on much longer. He and I both want to make love to each other badly and I am feeling a little too self-conscious. -- Scarred Legs, North End
Dear Legs: Candlelight is everybody's best friend for lovemaking, as it softens the light without actually making it so dark there's no possibility of seeing the other person's face. Of course, you can start out the first time making love in the dark, if you're that self-conscious about it, or make love under the covers. But if you have a real relationship going here, with passion and tender feelings and respect and fun, these scars aren't going to mean much to your guy.
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I went to jail when I was young. I sold a lot of drugs many decades ago but I still can't drive across the border. I know some people go out and get pardons but I don't think it's going to help me much, asking for one. My girlfriend knows the score, but she keeps saying, "Why don't you just try?" I don't want to try! I don't want to put everything out there for everyone to see, and have all those bad feelings about myself again. I am a different person as an adult than I was as a mixed-up guy on drugs. How do I convince my girlfriend we can travel elsewhere? She's determined to find out if we can go to Fargo shopping, like her family does, and won't let it alone. I just feel lousy about opening this whole can of worms, I'm almost to the point of saying goodbye to her. -- Drug Free But Not Memory Free, Winnipeg
Dear Drug Free: You feel vulnerable and afraid -- very natural in your situation. Your girlfriend doesn't sound very sensitive. Clearly, she won't be the one opening herself up to these bad memories and possible embarrassment. Don't do this so your girlfriend can go to Fargo to shop. Just do it, if you decide it would be a wise thing for you to do. Jail is a bad set of memories for you, and for a long time you have felt "over" this part of your life. But, you might give Pardon Services, 453-0099, a quiet call and at least see how they handle this process, and now painful/painless it would be to work on it. The advantage of having an intermediary is that you are spared a lot of the embarrassment.
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