Do More Guys Than Girls do Drugs? DR. WALLACE: I'm an 18-year-old female. I have never taken any type of illegal drug in my entire life, and I seriously doubt that I ever will. I'm also positive that all of my many close friends are drug-free, and we all talk about not getting …Read more. Obese Teens Usually Stay That Way TEENS: Do you lay off junk foods, get proper rest, exercise, and ration your TV-watching time? If your answer is yes, congratulations! But you are the exception, not the rule. According to a study in The Journal of The American Medical Association, …Read more. College Freshmen Gain Weight TEENS: Are you planning on attending college soon? Are you also concerned about gaining extra pounds? Then you had better be extra cautious starting on the very day you step foot on campus. It's been known that the temptation to overeat and to eat …Read more. How Can I Help Her? DR. WALLACE: I have a friend who has told me that she is in an abusive relationship with her boyfriend. She is 19 and he is 25. She says that she loves this guy and just can't seem to break up with him. I asked her if he is hitting her and she said …Read more.more articles
Opossums Are Valuable Creatures
DR. WALLACE: We have a cat that sometimes doesn't finish eating all the food in her bowl in the backyard, and the uneaten food attracts opossums and raccoons. My brother thinks raccoons are cool, but says opossums are part of the rat family and carry a lot of diseases. When he sees an opossum in the yard at night, he chases it and tries to kill it by throwing rocks at it. I don't think opossums are rats, and I don't want my brother killing them. I think they're cute and that they were put on earth for a purpose. What's the right answer? —Katie, Riverside, Calif.
KATIE: Every couple of years I get inquiries about this wonderful animal. Let me set your brother straight. Opossums are not related to rats. Some think they are because of their long, rat-like tail. Actually, opossums are North America's only marsupial (meaning the mother has a pouch), and they eat all types of nuisance insects, including cockroaches and beetles, as well as snails. They're called "nature's sanitary engineers" and present a far lower health risk to humans than your cat does.
Please encourage your brother not to throw rocks at this valuable but defenseless creature. We humans must respect the right of all "critters" to live in harmony with us. Please make sure your parents read your letter and my response. They must make sure your brother stops this uncivilized behavior immediately!
Her Boyfriend Wants Her Super Slim
CORRINE: Almost all anorexics feel they're in control and can stop starving themselves whenever they reach that "ideal" weight. Unfortunately, they never reach that ideal weight. All anorexics are out of control and need professional counseling to overcome their obsession with thinness. Insist that your parents seek professional help for your sister immediately. Your parents must be made aware that anorexia nervosa is an extremely addictive eating disorder, and if not overcome, it can result in death by starvation.
I'd also suggest that your parents call the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders at 1-630-577-1330, between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. EST. They'll answer any questions and give you advice.
Dr. Robert Wallace welcomes questions from readers. Although he is unable to reply to all of them individually, he will answer as many as possible in this column. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. To find out more about Dr. Robert Wallace and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.
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