DR. WALLACE: I'm 17 and had been dating Brian for over a year. We really cared for (loved?) each other and enjoyed being together. Four months ago, both of us were saddened when we found out his parents were moving to California because Brian's father was offered a better-paying job. Brian and I agreed that we should date others because we might never see each other again.
A month after Brian left, I met Phil at a friend's beach party. It didn't take long before we were dating regularly. Phil is 19 and taking classes at the University of Florida while working part-time in the family insurance business.
Last night, I got the shock of my life. I was busy working on my geometry when suddenly I heard a "tap, tap, tap" on my bedroom window, and who do I see peeking in — Brian. We sat out on our front porch and talked for two hours. He told me that he missed me terribly and wanted us to start dating each other again. His family had moved back to Miami because his father did not like his new job. When I told him that I was steadily dating Phil, he looked sad and said that he would wait for me.
If I weren't dating Phil, I'd jump at the chance to date Brian again. I don't know what I should do. Help! — Karla, Miami, Fla.
KARLA: You sound clear about your feelings; you simply have to trust them. Tell Phil that an old flame has moved back to town, but assure him he's still your boyfriend. This gets the matter out in the open, which is always better than being secretive. Then contact Brian and let him know you're flattered that he wants to wait for you, but you don't want him to entertain false hopes. If he insists on waiting, encourage him to date other girls while he does so, because the wait could be a long one.
EVERYONE ELSE IS CHEATING
TEENS: Cheating in classes is on the rise and, according to a survey by Who's Who Among American High School Students, it's the honor students who are leading the way!
A total of 3,123 honor students participated in the survey — and a shocking 80 percent of them admitted they got to the top of their class the easy way, by cheating. And those students said they weren't caught because of lax enforcement by teachers.
The cheaters didn't have any guilt feelings; most had adopted the attitude, "I cheat because everyone else is cheating." Sadly, many parents also don't feel that cheating is such a big deal. Many of them have been cheating on their income tax forms for years. Unfortunately, this cheating habit is passed on to their children.
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. E-mail 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.