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by Abigail Van Buren

Friend Frets That Woman Living at Home Is Missing Out on Life

DEAR ABBY: For months I have been trying to convince my family (I am under 18) to allow me to go onto the pill. No matter how I explain it to them, they always find a way to refuse or put it off. Doctors and therapists have also talked to them, but they refuse to budge. I have started becoming sexually active, and the pill would decrease the stress of becoming pregnant. What should I do? -- STRESSED TEEN

DEAR TEEN: Because you didn't mention in your letter your age or whether you have a steady boyfriend, your parents may be worried that giving their permission will signal approval of your sexual activity. However, in most states teens are allowed to get birth control at their nearest Planned Parenthood Health Center or from their doctor without parental permission. Because you are concerned about being safe, go online, do some research and find out for yourself. But keep in mind that the pill will not protect you from getting an STD.