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by Abigail Van Buren

DEAR ABBY: I am a 29-year-old married woman, and I dearly love my husband and child. However, I think I've fallen head over heels for my "first love" (I'll call him Cliff) all over again.

I recently ran into Cliff at the hardware store, and after talking a while, we went riding around in his car -- just like we did when we were in high school. Then we parked and started making out.

Cliff confessed that for the past 10 years he's felt HE was meant to be my husband, and letting me go was the biggest mistake of his life. The terrible thing is, now I'm wishing I had married him, too.

For the past month we've been secretly meeting downtown three times a week. All we do is drive around, park and neck -- nothing more. When I'm with him, I feel like a teenager again. I still love him, Abby, and I'm so confused I cry in my pillow. Sign me ... BACK IN LOVERS' LANE

DEAR BACK IN LOVERS' LANE: You may be just "two teenagers in love" in your fantasies, but in reality you're two adults who are begging for trouble. You're playing a dangerous game that could devastate your husband and affect your child. Before any more clandestine meetings, it's time to sit down and sort out what's really important to you. Counseling can help you discover what is missing in your marriage that has made a second adolescence so appealing. Don't put it off.

DEAR ABBY: I need some advice. My boyfriend and I have been together for two years. He was adopted by loving parents who gave him everything. But he has just found his birth mother, and they seem to want to catch up on lost time.

My problem is I can't seem to stop resenting that his mother came back into his life. I feel very left out, and as if my time has been usurped by another woman. Don't get me wrong. I am happy for him, but I no longer feel that I am his No. 1 priority.

I tried talking to my boyfriend about this, and he acts like he understands my feelings -- but he also says it seems I want him to choose.

How can I stop feeling this way? -- LEFT OUT IN LAREDO

DEAR LEFT OUT: First of all, understand that what is going on is not about you; it's all about him and his need to understand who he is and where he came from. Like any new relationship, it is distracting in the beginning, but will subside in time. So be patient. Realize that what a man feels for his mother is not what he feels for his girlfriend. Don't take this personally, and above all, do not allow yourself to be put into a "her or me" situation. If you do, you might win the battle, but you'll surely lose the war.

DEAR ABBY: I am a 16-year-old male student and I have a huge crush on my summer school teacher, "Miss Bodacious." She doesn't notice me and it's driving me crazy. I'm losing my mind. I hate it! Please help. What should I do to calm my raging hormones? -- GOT IT BAD FOR "BOD" IN DELAWARE

DEAR GOT IT BAD: In a word, SUBLIMATE. It's time to take the energy you are devoting to fantasizing about your teacher and channel it into something else -- like sports activities. Not only will it give you less time to think about "Miss Bodacious," but you'll be so tired when you're done that you won't have the energy. (Cold showers also help.) Good luck!

For an excellent guide to becoming a better conversationalist and a more attractive person, order "How to Be Popular." Send a business-size, self-addressed envelope, plus check or money order for $5 (U.S. funds only) to: Dear Abby Popularity Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Postage is included.)

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