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by Abigail Van Buren

DEAR ABBY: I am a 21-year-old woman from the Philippines. I have been insecure all my life. I know I have a pretty face, but I have a lot of scars on my legs from childhood. Because of this I am depressed, unhappy and insecure. I never wear shorts, skirts or dresses that show my legs.

Do you think there is some guy somewhere who will love me despite my scars? I'm well aware that guys like sexy ladies with flawless skin. I hate the way my legs look, and I doubt I will ever find a husband. Please help me. -- INSECURE LADY

DEAR INSECURE: Please quit putting yourself down. Sometimes we women can be our most severe critics. If you stop looking for reasons men won't like you and start concentrating on why they will, you may have better luck.

Men like women who are fun to be around, who are kind, intelligent, honest and who don't play games. A man who would reject you because of scars on your legs isn't a person you need for a lasting, meaningful relationship.

Read more in: Love & Dating | Mental Health

Puppy Would Ease Pain Of Dog's Loss

DEAR ABBY: My dog got my neighbor's dog pregnant, and my neighbor kept it secret so she can sell the pups and keep all the money. I know this because her son told me so.

My dog died this week and I really want one of the puppies. I can't afford to buy one at $300. Does the family of the father of the pups have any rights? -- MISSING MY DOGGIE

DEAR MISSING YOUR DOGGIE: Pets are supposed to be spayed or neutered to prevent this sort of thing from happening. I'm sorry for the loss of your beloved dog. If the pregnancy was unplanned, the owner of the female is not obligated to provide a puppy or compensation to the owner of the male. Perhaps out of compassion your neighbor will relent and give one to you.

Read more in: Money | Friends & Neighbors

DEAR ABBY: I have been married for more than 15 years to a man who refuses to kiss me. We kissed briefly on our wedding day (long enough to take a photo) and have not done so since then.

This past New Year's Eve instead of the traditional kiss on the lips, he gave me a kiss on the head and a peck, akin to what you'd see between close friends. He says the human mouth has many germs in it.

Abby, I dream of being kissed. I know the possibility of it happening during my marriage is close to nil. What can I do? I am well-groomed and practice good oral hygiene. -- DOING WITHOUT SOMETHING NICE IN WASHINGTON

DEAR DOING WITHOUT: It has been 15 years since you have been kissed and you're writing me about it only now? Was your courtship this way, too?

Relationships wither without affection. Your husband appears to either be germ phobic or passive aggressive. Unless he is willing to talk to a counselor about it, nothing will change. I hope he'll do it before you meet someone else under the mistletoe or at the stroke of midnight.

Read more in: Marriage & Divorce

For an excellent guide to becoming a better conversationalist and a more sociable person, order "How to Be Popular." Send your name and mailing address, plus check or money order for $7 (U.S. funds) to: Dear Abby, Popularity Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Shipping and handling are included in the price.)