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by Abigail Van Buren

Girl's Impulse to Cut Herself Returns With Her Depression

DEAR ABBY: I'm a 23-year-old woman who needs advice on how to find female friends. My family moved a lot when I was a child. By the time we settled down, I was in high school and realized to my dismay that it was too late. The other girls already had friends and social groups and weren't looking for more.

The same was true when I went to college and met my roommates. I'm out of school now and haven't had a female friend in years. It can be very lonely. Where can I meet women my age who still want to make new friends? -- FRIEND-CHALLENGED IN GLENDALE, CALIF.

DEAR FRIEND-CHALLENGED: Select an activity you enjoy -- or think you would like to learn about -- and pursue that interest. Some suggestions that come to mind would be to join a gym where you'll meet other young women, or special-interest groups such as cooking, sewing, knitting, quilting or scrapbooking. And, of course, there is always that old standby: volunteering for a charity or cause. You will always find interesting women involved in volunteer work. Give it a try.