Join the debate. Vote Now on the Dear Abby Poll of the week.

by Abigail Van Buren

DEAR ABBY: I love my boyfriend very much, but he's not affectionate in any way. When I ask him if he loves me, he gets angry. He told me that he said he loved me once, and after that, he shouldn't have to repeat it. He says he wants an independent woman who makes no demands.

Abby, I enjoy his company. He takes me out every weekend and calls me every day. But he never holds my hand or kisses me. I need some affection and reassurance of his love, but he refuses to give it to me.

Should I stay in this relationship or move on? -- MISS GLORIA IN GEORGIA

DEAR MISS GLORIA: Metaphorically speaking, you are fire and your boyfriend is ice -- a decidedly incompatible combination. Since he is unwilling to fulfill your needs, you should consider ending this relationship so you can be free to find a man who is a better match.

DEAR ABBY: I am a 49-year-old divorced woman. My children are adults and live 2,500 miles away. I own my own home and am self-supporting.

I have been dating a gentleman 10 years my junior for the last five years. I love him, but I do not want to get married again. He is very insistent about wanting marriage. He is controlling and jealous and does not like to be alone. (I am not thrilled with this aspect of his personality.)

Abby, I made it clear from the beginning that I have no interest in marriage. I was married to an alcoholic for 19 years, and I am very independent. Should I end the relationship so he can find someone who wants to marry him, or continue the relationship? Your input would be appreciated. -- WONDERING IN OHIO

DEAR WONDERING: Since you are adamant about not wanting to remarry, you would be doing this man a kindness to set him free. A man who is controlling, jealous and doesn't like to be alone would be a poor marriage prospect even if you decided to relent. End the relationship now!

DEAR ABBY: The letter from the woman whose co-worker told her she wore her pins on the wrong side brought up an ongoing dispute between my father and me. I hope you can settle it.

I am a 30-year-old, well-educated man, and I always dress nicely for work. When I put on my belt, I go around my waist clockwise, with the buckle facing left and the point of the belt to my right.

My father says I am wearing my belt wrong. He says the belt must go counterclockwise, with the point left and the buckle right. He claims all men wear their belts this way.

Abby, is my father correct, and does it really matter which way a man wears his belt? -- KEEPS MY TROUSERS UP ANYWAY

DEAR KEEPS: I called several clothing stores that feature menswear and presented your question. I was told your father is correct: Belts should be put on counterclockwise so that the end points to the left when buckled.

What teens need to know about sex, drugs, AIDS, and getting along with peers and parents is in "What Every Teen Should Know." To order, send a business-sized, self-addressed envelope, plus check or money order for $3.95 ($4.50 in Canada) to: Dear Abby, Teen Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, Ill. 61054-0447. (Postage is included.)

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