DEAR ABBY: I am a woman in my late 40s, and I hate sex. I'm disabled, and it has always been torture. I never got any positive benefits out of it.

My problem is I get hit on constantly. I'm single, own my own home and the men in this town (married and single) all seem to think I'm fair game. They're convinced that I'm in need of satisfaction because I don't date or have a steady man in my life.

I have told them repeatedly that it's not going to happen, but every once in a while one pops up on my doorstep or approaches me in town, only to be told again to leave me alone.

Please don't tell me to see a therapist. The last one I went to tried to tell me I was gay. No! I'm simply happy being single and sex-free. Short of running these idiots off with a shotgun, how do I get it through their thick skulls that I'm not available?

- Sexless by Choice

DEAR SEXLESS: Although we live in a sex-obsessed society, not everyone - male or female - is a sexual creature. Your therapist should not have tried to label you as gay. You appear to be asexual, which you describe as happily sex-free.

The next time you are hit on by one of these men - who, by the way, probably think that by doing so they are "helping" - tell him you are happy with your life just the way it is, and it isn't necessary to offer help where none is needed. Period.

DEAR ABBY: I'll be visiting the United States in a couple of weeks. How do I tip the waitress properly? I know to round the bill by 15 percent and up, but do I pay only in cash, or can I have this amount charged to my credit card? Are there any other things I have to look out for?

- Jutta in Trier, Germany

DEAR JUTTA: If you prefer to add your tip to your credit card, it is perfectly acceptable to do so. However, before you pay, you should review the bill to be sure that a gratuity has not already been included, which can happen when a group of people dine together.