I have a guy friend, and we always end up very close to getting into a relationship, but right before anything becomes serious, he ends it with "I just don't want a girlfriend right now." So I move on — then he becomes interested again. What should I do? —Cathy, 16, New Orleans

It sounds like this guy is playing games with you, Cathy. Maybe he's unsure of his feelings and he's trying to figure them out. Or perhaps he sees you moving on and wants what he can't have. Whatever is going through his head, it's not helping you at all.

Our advice? Don't play his games. If you really like him, tell him up front. Say: "I'm tired of this cycle. I really like you, and I'd like to be in a relationship with you if you're ready. If you're not, I'll understand — but then we should just be friends, and stay friends. I'm not willing to play these games anymore."

If he gives you a vague answer or says he's still not ready to be in a relationship, force yourself to move on and date other guys; you deserve a guy who is ready for you, consistent with you and appreciative of you.

How do I get rid of a friend I don't want to hang out with anymore? She has started making bad decisions, and it's put our friendship on the rocks. I just can't take it anymore! —Regan, 15, The Woodlands, Texas

High-five for not putting up with a friend who doesn't share the same morals as you, Regan! You don't say what her bad decisions are, but whether she is failing her classes or doing drugs, we understand how her decisions could put your friendship at risk.

Before you completely blow her off, though, talk to her about the situation. Maybe she needs someone to call attention to what's going on. Say: "I'm worried about your decisions lately. They not only seem harmful to you, but they also seem to be negatively affecting our friendship." Ask her what's happening and if there's anything you can do to help her — like joining her to talk to a trusted adult, such as your school guidance counselor. She might appreciate your talking to her, or she might just blow you off. Either way, at least you gave it a shot. If, after you talk to her, she's still not being the friend you need, start hanging out with other friends and reaching out to new ones.


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