DEAR ABBY: My wife, "Angie," and I have been happily married for 11 years and have two wonderful kids. Angie has been working out the past couple of years and has achieved impressive results. She looks great. I fully support her in this and she knows it.
The problem is she's consumed by an insatiable hunger to be thin, although she is already very much in shape. She talks nonstop about new diets and ideas for losing weight, even though I constantly compliment her. Why does she keep insisting that she needs to diet? -- ALARMED HUSBAND
DEAR ALARMED: Your wife doesn't see herself the way you do. She does not accept that she has achieved her goal and regards herself as still a work in progress. This may be because she has low self-esteem, or she may have a condition called "body dysmorphia," in which a person can't stop thinking about a perceived flaw in his or her appearance.
The person she should be talking to about her weight issues is her physician. I recommend you suggest it to her to be sure her preoccupation isn't an unhealthy one.
DEAR ABBY: I'm a high school senior. My boyfriend has asked me to marry him and I said yes. I don't know if I may have said it too quickly or if I should have waited. My family keeps asking me if I'm "sure." Well, I want to be with him, but I don't know about marriage.
Please help me. I don't want to make a big mistake. -- CONFUSED TEEN IN SELMA, ALA.
DEAR CONFUSED: If you are unsure if you want to be married, you agreed too quickly. What you need to do is take a little time to decide what you want to do with your future.
Before marrying, it would be wise to consider completing your education so you will be better able to contribute financially to your marriage partnership. If you do, you will need to focus on your studies for the next few years. If not, you should still postpone marriage until you have lived apart from your family long enough to establish emotional and financial independence.
Your family keeps asking if you're "sure" because they are concerned that you have made too hasty a decision. The dreams you have at 18 may change by the time you are 23. Until you are 100 percent sure you are doing the right thing, do not set a wedding date.
DEAR ABBY: My estranged niece's high school graduation is coming up, and her father (my brother) has invited me to attend. He says she wants all her aunts (including me) to be there.
I'm not sure I should go because she kicked us out of her life years ago when she went to live with her mom after her parents separated. She said many hurtful things to her mom about us at the time and said she wanted us out of her life. Please advise me. -- TAKEN ABACK IN SANTA ANA, CALIF.
DEAR TAKEN ABACK: It strikes me as strange that the woman your brother was divorcing would repeat the uncomplimentary things her daughter (may have) said about family members -- unless it was an attempt at parental alienation.
I hope you won't let something your niece might have said years ago, while under the emotional strain of her parents' separation, keep you from attending the graduation. She has most likely matured since then and would like to mend fences. Remember that when you see this girl, and treat her warmly and see what happens.
What teens need to know about sex, drugs, AIDS and getting along with peers and parents is in "What Every Teen Should Know." Send your name and mailing address, plus check or money order for $7 (U.S. funds) to: Dear Abby, Teen Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Shipping and handling are included in the price.)