Dear Abby

DEAR ABBY: How do I make my husband understand that how I cut my hair has nothing to do with him? I am 30 years old, and I have a full-time job and three kids who are involved in everything. Because I am always on the go, I need a hairdo that is easy to manage and cute, so I ended up getting my hair cut short. I love it. It makes me feel younger, cuter and trendy.

When my husband and I started dating, I used to have long, thick hair — but I was not aware that keeping my hair long was "part of the deal." He feels I cut my hair purposely to go against what he wants. That sounds selfish to me. Isn't it MY hair?

— SHORT AND TRENDY IN WEST TEXAS

DEAR SHORT AND TRENDY: You cut your hair "purposely to go against what he wants"? I wouldn't call your husband selfish. I would call him controlling.

Long hair can be lovely, but it does require time and care — not unlike a pet or a garden. If he can't understand that your busy schedule no longer allows you that kind of time to devote to yourself, that's his problem. Do not make it yours.

You are no longer the carefree girl you were when you were dating. You are a woman with real responsibilities. And it's time for your husband to grow up, too.

P.S. If long hair is some kind of "fetish" for him, offer to buy a long wig and wear it on special occasions.

DEAR ABBY: I am a sophomore in high school, and I need help with something. I am a die-hard Christian who strongly believes in the whole "no sex before marriage" deal. All my old boyfriends have tried to take advantage of me. When I say I am saving myself for true love, they always dump me.

So here's the question: Do I tell the guy straight out that he's not getting any, or do I just wait until the subject comes up and casually mention it?

— DEE IN SAN DIEGO

DEAR DEE: I see no reason to announce upon meeting someone that he "won't be getting any." Give the person a chance to know you, and while that is happening, avoid situations where you are alone and tempted.

When the subject of sex comes up, explain that you are saving yourself for MARRIAGE. It sends a clear message and is less of a put-down than saying you're saving yourself for "true love," which makes it appear he somehow doesn't measure up.

DEAR ABBY: My 8-year-old daughter, "Romy," writes in a little journal that I bought her. She writes things like, "I love Blake," and "Me and Blake forever," and more. Can an 8-year-old really feel love for this boy? I always thought that girls her age didn't really care too much for boys. Am I making too much of this?

— CONCERNED MOM IN OXNARD, CALIF.

DEAR CONCERNED MOM: Little girls don't fall in love like adult women do, but they certainly can develop crushes on boys. I remember one I had on a boy named Jimmy when I was in kindergarten. I "fell in love" with him because he could swing around a pole straight-armed, and I thought he was a brilliant athlete. It was the first of many crushes. So please stop obsessing. You have nothing to worry about.

Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Write Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.