DEAR ABBY: I am currently deployed in Afghanistan. My best friend's little sister, "Brittany," has had a crush on me for years. She has been straightforward about what she wants -- marriage, kids, white picket fence, etc. She has always been like a little sister, so it has been awkward. I thought it was weird for a 15-year-old (at the time) to say that to an older soldier on R&R.
During my deployment Brittany has sent me care packages loaded with cookies. Maybe I should have kept my mouth shut about my weakness for homemade cookies, but hindsight is 20/20. Brittany has now called in the bribe by inviting me to her senior prom. Not wanting to mess with the steady supply of baked goods, I said yes. I figure it's an appropriate way to say thanks for the cookies.
I intend to make sure Brittany enjoys her prom with her medal-covered arm candy, but I need to let her know that while I'm flattered she thinks so highly of me, I'm not interested in dating her. I love her like a sister. I don't want to break her heart.
Any suggestions for a guy who's about as subtle as a tank rolling down a cobblestone road on a Sunday? -- MEDAL-COVERED EYE CANDY
DEAR EYE CANDY: How long has it been since you've seen Brittany? When you return for that prom, she will no longer be that precocious 15-year-old you remember. By all means show her a nice evening. But don't say anything you might regret or you may have to eat your words instead of those cookies. If you're not romantically interested, you'll date other women and Brittany will catch on soon enough. And you may find that after her glamorous evening with her medal-covered war hero, she sets her sights on someone other than you. Stranger things have happened.