DEAR ABBY: We have a grandson who is 4 and very much a "princess boy." He likes girl toys and dresses and doesn't like any of his boy toys. He's an adorable little boy and we love him to pieces. His parents don't accept this behavior, and I'm afraid it will affect him now and in the future.
How would you handle this? We don't say anything to his parents because they are pretty much in denial.
- Worried Grandma
DEAR WORRIED: If he were my grandchild I'd talk with the parents. I, too, am concerned about how their attitude will affect the child in the future, because parents are supposed to love and accept children the way they are, and sexual orientation is inborn. Children who feel consistent disapproval grow up thinking they aren't good enough and don't measure up - which can be a self-fulfilling prophecy.
I would "handle this" by making sure my grandson knew I loved, accepted and valued him just the way he is. If that means allowing him to play with the toys of his choice in my home, that's what I'd do. And if he showed more interest in art, music and dance and less interest in sports, trucks, etc., I'd support that, too. Your grandson may or may not grow up to be gay or transgender, which is what I think your letter is really about.
DEAR ABBY: I met a guy on an online dating site. It turns out I know him. He's everything I'm looking for in a guy except he's 25 and I'm 17.
He thinks I'm a cop and I'm going to bust him for trying to have sex with me 'cause I'm underage. How do I show him he can trust me?
- Needs Advice in Oregon
DEAR NEEDS ADVICE: Undercover cops are older than 17. It is possible that he is trying to let you down without hurting your feelings. You are not yet out of high school and this man is far ahead of you in life experience. Rather than try to talk him into having a sexual relationship with you, you would be much better off finding someone your own age.