DEAR HARRIETTE: A friend of mine has been single for years. Recently, she started dating a guy who is 13 years her junior. She seems really happy, but she also seems obsessed with his age. She showed me a picture of the two of them and then went on and on about how she doesn’t mean to be a cougar. She asked me a million times if she looks young for her age. She does, but I couldn’t lie and tell her she looks as young as her boyfriend. I did tell her that they look happy in the photo, and if they like each other, that’s all that counts. She keeps asking for reassurances. What else can I say? -- Cougar, Milwaukee
DEAR COUGAR: Stop saying anything. Let your friend figure out her life. I understand that it can feel awkward and new for an older woman to take up with a younger man. The reality, though, is that it happens all the time with older men, and rarely does anyone blink. That age difference is not so vast that they can’t find compatible interests.
Your friend should pay attention to what she’s got and nurture that relationship. If she keeps talking about how young he is, that may make it uncomfortable for him. Obviously he likes her if he has chosen to be with her. That’s what’s most important. Next time she asks you, remind her to pay attention to him rather than what people are saying -- and live her life!