GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

Lifestyle

April 27, 2013

Teenager's dating game plan begins with proving maturity

:Dear Abby: I am a 13-year-old girl and my parents won’t let me date. I believe I am mature for my age and won’t do anything foolish. I don’t know why my parents are being like this. Please give me some advice on how to persuade them.

:Really Ready In New Hampshire

:Dear Really Ready: Although you think you are ready to start dating, your parents will have to make the ultimate decision on when you enter the “dating game.” Their decision will most likely be based on whether you have demonstrated the beginnings of emotional maturity.

Here’s how: You need to have proven to them you can handle responsibility, carry out school assignments and chores, be honest with them and keep your word. It will also depend upon whether they know the boy in question, and whether HE is responsible enough to be trusted with their most precious possession, which is you.

:Dear Abby: I have been married for 27 years to a man who is a church pastor. We have had to move every six to eight years, partly because he was repeatedly unfaithful. We have gone through his alcoholism, gambling and womanizing, and my two suicide attempts. We have been trying to work things out, but I suspect that he’s back to his old ways.

I work part-time, but haven’t been able to find a full-time job after our most recent move, so I am financially dependent on him. I have two adult children who don’t live near me. Most of the people I know are through the church, and they are all great supporters of my husband.

I feel trapped, and I don’t know how to fix my life at this point. Have you any suggestions?

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