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by Abigail Van Buren

Harry Truman Made the Bucks Stop Where They Were Needed

DEAR ABBY: This is to "Mom in the Middle" from someone who has been there.

I am a 28-year-old mother of a 12-year-old daughter. I had my first sexual encounter when I was 16 years old. The boy (he was 17) used a condom so I thought I was safe. I was wrong. The condom failed. I don't know how it happened, but it did.

Be glad your daughter was honest with you. I was too scared to tell my mother for fear she would tell my father. (She told my father everything even when she promised me she wouldn't.) Dad was shocked when Mom gave him the news, but he accepted it with good grace.

Although my parents are now doting grandparents, we all wish it had been a few years later.

Involve your husband. He has a right to know. -- LEARNED THE HARD WAY