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by Abigail Van Buren

Woman's See Through Style Leaves Little to Imagination

DEAR ABBY: I have been involved with "Barbie" for about six months. She's everything I ever wanted in a mate. We have a similar sense of humor, and our goals and ambitions are almost identical. Our values match, too -- except for one: My sense of propriety seems to be a stumbling block.

Abby, Barbie wears sheer tops and no bra. She doesn't usually wear any undergarments, either, even when she's in a fairly short skirt.

I grew up Southern Baptist, raised around women who feel that kind of attire is unacceptable and trashy. While the female body is, to me, one of the most beautiful things on Earth, I was brought up to believe that leaving something to the imagination is more desirable than showing everything. Barbie says I've got hang-ups, and I don't necessarily disagree. How can I deal with this? -- TRYING TO LOOSEN UP IN NORTH CAROLINA

DEAR TRYING: While you didn't mention it specifically, it appears you live far from your family and no longer attend church regularly -- because you do not seem to be taking into account what kind of impression Barbie is going to make when she is exposed to them.

Barbie may be a lovely woman, but she needs to understand that there are other ways to attract attention than the way she's going about it, and if you are seriously considering a future with her, you will try harder to get that message across. If she cares about you, she will compromise. That's how you "deal with it."