DEAR ABBY: I am a 12-year-old girl who is happy, healthy and doing great in school. But lately I have felt sad, lonely and just plain frustrated. I used to talk to my parents about it, but I don't feel comfortable doing it anymore, and my friends don't like listening to me.
I have tried hard to push back these feelings, but it is putting a strain on me. Sometimes I break down crying and can't stop. Most people think it's just my age, but it's not. It's more than that. I want to talk to a psychologist, but I'm scared to ask for one. What do you think? -- SO MIXED UP
DEAR SO MIXED UP: Admitting you need professional help with a problem isn't something to be scared of. It is a sign of maturity. Your mood swings may be caused by the hormonal changes going on in your body as you are becoming a woman. However, because they are of concern to you, it is important that you let your parents and your pediatrician or a counselor at school know how you are feeling. It's the surest way to get the reassurance and, if necessary, the counseling you think you need.