Originally created 11/25/03

Flirting can send wrong message, lead to rumors



THIS WEEK'S PROBLEM: I get along really well with guys because we share a lot of the same interests, but I seem to get in trouble with girls because of it. I have been called all kinds of stupid names because of my relationship with guys. I don't do anything with them sexually (maybe flirt like every other girl does) but I get fussed at for it all the same. How do I keep my relationships with my guy friends without putting up with the crap from the girls?

Xtreme reporter Kamille Bostick says: Flirting with these guys may not be the best way to go if you are trying to convince the girls that the boys are just your friends. You are sending mixed messages, and there is a chance people will get the wrong idea.

Be careful how you interact with your guy friends in front of the talkative girls if you want to quiet the rumors. You should even make an attempt to let the girls know that you are just friends with the guys.

But mostly, ignore the girls. You don't have to justify your friendships. You are allowed to befriend whomever you want. Plus, if the girls are too judgmental and presumptuous to see that your relationships are strictly platonic and innocent, that is their problem. It is hard enough to make a good friend; you don't need to worry about people who are too busy making assumptions to see the truth.

Regardless of what you do or whom you hang out with, people are going to talk. You have no control over how they choose to perceive you. What you do control is how you let it affect you.

Choose not to care about what uninformed people are saying. You can't spend the rest of your life trying to please everyone, and you can't make everyone like you or the things you do. If you try to do either you will find yourself not only unsuccessful, but unfulfilled.

Make an effort to set the record straight and then enjoy your friendships.

NEXT WEEK'S PROBLEM

I have a boyfriend, and I love him. But I still have love for my ex. My ex wants me to go back with him in December. What should I do?

Do you have any advice for this 14-year-old Augusta girl?

Go to augustachronicle.com/xtreme and look for this week's problem to submit your reply or call the Advice Line voice mailbox at 823-3358. You'll have one minute to reply.

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