“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Wilmington, IL

#1 Sep 18, 2013
DEAR ABBY: I'm a 14-year-old girl who just started high school. I started to notice boys when I was in middle school, and I'd like to start dating soon.

The problem is I've never had a close friend who was a boy, and the idea isn't natural to me. How can I ask a boy out if I don't even grasp the concept of being friends with one? I'm frustrated over this, especially because I really like one particular guy.

The only advice I have been given is, "Get over your fear and just talk to him." This isn't very helpful to me. I want to know how to get over my fear! Abby, your thoughts would be appreciated.-- CAN'T FIND THE NERVE IN OHIO

DEAR CAN'T FIND THE NERVE: I'll gladly share some thoughts. The first is I hope you realize how many girls and guys your age feel exactly the same way you do. Social skills don't come naturally to everyone -- but they can be learned. And like any learned skill, they take practice.

The surest cure for shyness -- which is the "fear" you are experiencing -- is to forget about yourself and concentrate on the other person. Smile and introduce yourself if the guy doesn't know you. If you share a class with him or know an activity he's involved in, ask a question about it. He's not good at sports? Not musical? Ask him about a class assignment.

You don't have to be brilliant or witty. Try leading off with a friendly remark or a compliment.("Nice shirt, cellphone," etc.) I know very few people who don't appreciate a compliment. Overcoming shyness takes practice, so don't go after the boy you "really like" at first. Make a point of smiling and saying hello to everyone. It's friendly, it's welcoming.

Keep in mind that the majority of people have the same insecurities you do. Many of them will respond positively because they appreciate being noticed. That's how you make friends of both genders. I have a booklet that offers even more suggestions. The title is "How to Be Popular," and it contains hints for polishing social skills for people of all ages. It can be ordered by sending your name and address, plus check or money order for $7 (U.S. funds) to ...*we really don't care*... Shipping and handling are included in the price. Remember, you don't have to be the prettiest or smartest girl in school. But you can be one of the nicest.

Show an interest in others. Be honest but always tactful. Cultivate your own interests so you will have something to talk about with others. If there are clubs at your school, join the ones that interest you. It's another way of making friends of both sexes.

Most young people go out in groups these days. So, if you and some friends plan to do something (and after you have been friendly and let the young man you like notice you), smile and ask if he'd like to come along. If he's shy, it's a way of making him feel less self-conscious, too. Good luck!

“The two baby belly, please!”

Since: Sep 09

Evanston IL

#2 Sep 18, 2013
That's it? One lousy letter and a book plug to boot?

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#3 Sep 18, 2013
L1: Friends? You don't make friends with boys at your age. You sleep with them, dump them and break their hearts, and keep the Goth music tradition alive and well.

“A Programmer is not in IT!”

Since: Feb 09

Neda, stay with me! Charlie

#4 Sep 18, 2013
1 Bleh! Just have Becky pass him a note from you.

Toj

“Where is Everyone?”

Since: Jul 12

Location hidden

#5 Sep 18, 2013
Seems like a fake letter so Abby could go on and on about young teen relationships.
not a ghost

San Antonio, TX

#6 Sep 18, 2013
At least, it's benign....
Julie

Chicago, IL

#7 Sep 18, 2013
squishymama wrote:
That's it? One lousy letter and a book plug to boot?
Are you surprised? Seriously?
Julie

Chicago, IL

#8 Sep 18, 2013
Toj wrote:
Seems like a fake letter so Abby could go on and on about young teen relationships.
Plus another chance to plug one of her worthless pamphlets <puke>

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#9 Sep 18, 2013
Julie, if you worked with me, I'd bring you banana bread tomorrow. ;)

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