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by Abigail Van Buren

Man Having Second Thoughts About Hosting Teen Age Cousin

DEAR ABBY: I am a 27-year-old man and not very close to my extended family. Out of the blue, my teen-age cousin called and asked if he could come and stay at my house for a week while he looks at colleges in Los Angeles. Of course, I agreed, but now I realize that entertaining and feeding a 17-year-old for a week will be somewhat costly -- and I am by no means wealthy.

Should I call and ask his parents to provide expense money, or, by initially accepting my cousin's request, is the responsibility now mine? -- "JOHN" IN SANTA MONICA

DEAR "JOHN": It was kind of you to agree to host your young cousin, and it will provide a wonderful opportunity for you to become better acquainted with your extended family.

Call ahead and ask what he would like to do while visiting you, and you'll have a better idea of what he "expects." Most teen-agers like hot dogs and hamburgers, and watching videos -- none of which should break your budget. If what he wants is expensive, tell him honestly that you can't afford it, and let his parents come up with the extra cash.

Enjoy your time together. It could be the beginning of a rewarding relationship for both of you.