DR. WALLACE: I have a very unusual problem, and I need all the advice I can get. I'm really not a very popular guy, even though I'm easygoing and a good student. I have been dating one particular girl for three months. We never talked about "going steady," so I have now also been dating a second girl, too! These are the first two girls I have ever dated. But there is another girl at the job I work at who is also very friendly toward me. However, I'm happy enough to just date the two I'm friendly with now.
Both girls and I attended the same school before COVID-19 hit. I like both girls a lot and want to continue dating both of them in case one gets tired of me and stops dating me entirely.
But I also fear that if I don't make a choice, one might find out about the other, and then both of them would stop dating me. What should I do? I'm not so sure I could date anyone else if these two girls stopped dating me. And I'm having a hard time choosing one over the other. This situation is now giving me a lot of stress to deal with because I feel that, any day now, things are going to blow up in one manner or another. What do you feel I should do regarding my dating life? — Nervous It Will All End, via email
NERVOUS IT WILL ALL END: Don't be forced to make a choice. If the girls refuse to date you because you don't want to go steady, so be it. It will be their loss. But so far, nobody has used the "steady" word, so don't feel bad about your situation. Many guys would feel lucky to be in your shoes! Also don't underestimate your ability to date other girls beyond these two!
Since you obviously are viewed to be nice and desirable to these two girls, you are quite likely in the future to be viewed in a similar manner by other girls.
Let each of the two girls you're presently seeing know that you truly enjoy their friendship, and see where things go. One may evolve into a longer-term relationship. And even if neither does, I feel you'll have no problem finding new dates in the future.
STICK TO YOUR PRINCIPLES
DR. WALLACE: I'm 16, and my boyfriend is 17, and we have been dating steadily for six months. I really like him. He's a super guy and very popular. Besides being very handsome, he is very intelligent and gets excellent grades in school. My problem is that I'm a virgin and not ready for a sexual relationship, but he is. Whenever we are alone, he tries to lay a guilt trip on me. All I hear is that almost all couples have sex, so why shouldn't we? As you can tell, I really don't want him to break up with me, so what can I tell him to get him to back off? He is always telling me that over 90% of all high school females have engaged in sex and that I'm one of the 10% who acts like a prude. — Not So Fast, via email
NOT SO FAST: First of all, your boyfriend needs to be aware that nowhere near 90% of high school girls are sexually active. Many magazines over the years have run stories estimating that well over half of American girls who graduate from high school are still virgins.
Talk to your boyfriend, and tell him that you really care for him, but that you are just not going to get involved in a sexual relationship at this stage of your life. Then, if he threatens to break up with you, wish him well, and let him pursue his quest for another girlfriend who shares his mindset. I know this is a difficult experience for you to deal with, but it's an extremely important one.
You've made it this far sticking to your excellent decision, and with or without him by your side from here, you'll be very, very happy you stuck to your principles. It sounds to me like you have an excellent head on your shoulders, so do listen to that inner voice that tells you not to be persuaded into doing something you don't wish to do at this point. This very lesson applies not just to boyfriends and sex but also to many other elements in your life. Keep up your good, principled thinking!
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 [email protected] 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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