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by Abigail Van Buren

Guilt Haunts Victim of Rape Following Attacker's Suicide

DEAR ABBY: I am 23 and being married in the fall. I couldn't be more excited. I have started shopping for a wedding dress, and I would like to wear a pure white one on my special day. However, I am not a virgin, and I know the original significance of brides wearing white was to declare their virginity.

Is this still true today, or is it not so important anymore? I don't want to offend anyone. (I think most of the guests we will be inviting know my fiance and I live together, so they can assume that I am not a virgin.) I could always wear an ivory dress, but I would really prefer a white one. What do you think? -- WONDERING IN WASHINGTON

DEAR WONDERING: If your dream dress is white, then that's what you should wear.

According to Emily Post: "During the 20th century, white came to signify joy rather than virginity (though traditionalists may hold to the older symbolism) and is now considered appropriate for all brides, including those marrying again and those who are pregnant at the time of the wedding."