DEAR ABBY: I am one of identical triplet girls. We're seniors in high school and experiencing some identity problems.
My sisters and I are good at many of the same things. We all play varsity field hockey, are on the cheerleading squad, take many of the same classes and share the same circle of friends.
My problem is I'm sick of being one of the "O'Sullivan triplets." I want to be just "Caitlin." Sometimes boys call our house and ask the sister who happens to answer the phone for a date, because going out with a triplet is a novelty.
Other boys who specifically want to go out with me become intimidated by my two sisters -- so they get cold feet about asking me. Only one boy ever wanted to date me because I'm me -- and he moved out of state.
Teachers keep asking which triplet I am. Coaches sometimes yell at me when their intention is to yell at one of my look-alike sisters. I'm so tired of people referring to us as a threesome.
My fear is that this won't end with high school graduation, because for financial reasons, we're all going to the same college.
Don't get me wrong, Abby, I love my sisters dearly -- but I'm ready to be my own person. How can I accomplish this without quitting the sports I love, giving up the friends I share with my sisters, or switching schools? Sign me ... JUST WANNA BE "ME" IN MARYLAND
DEAR JUST WANNA BE "ME": Discuss your feelings with your sisters. You may be surprised to learn they feel the same way you do. Next, look for ways to "individualize" yourself -- hair color, hair length, style of dress.
When you get to college, enroll in different classes at different times. You may discover you have separate interests. Make an effort to widen your circle of friends. Establishing yourself as an individual may take time, but a college campus is usually larger than a high school campus, so I'm betting your efforts will be successful. Good luck!