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Dear Ann Landers: Our daughter is 10 years old, and very big for her age. "Evangeline" is 5 feet 5 inches tall and weighs 150 pounds. She still plays with dolls, and her interests are the same as any other 10-year-old girl.

When we would go to the movies or to a sports event and ask for a child's ticket, they invariably questioned her age. We solved that problem by bringing along a copy of her birth certificate.

I have never seen this situation addressed in your column, so I hope you will publish my letter.

-- A New Orleans Reader
Dear New Orleans: Preteen girls who are large for their age need to be made aware that people will assume they are older, and they should not be embarrassed when this happens. Let them know being tall can be a great advantage, and they can capitalize on it, whether in sports, modeling, or reaching the top shelf of the cabinet. Point out the positive aspects, and insist that Evangeline stand tall, with her shoulders back and her head erect. Help her to view her height as a special gift, and build her self-esteem in every way possible.

Old lingerie

Dear Ann Landers: I have a wonderful boyfriend, and we plan to marry soon. "Jeff" and I are completely compatible in every way. The only problem is that he insists on keeping in his shirt drawer a satin and lace nightgown that belonged to his ex-girlfriend.

He has mentioned many times that he still wonders what went wrong with the relationship. The fact that he keeps this slinky nightgown leads me to believe he has unresolved feelings for her.

I have told Jeff I don't think it is appropriate for him to hang onto that nightgown now that we are going to be married. He says I should accept it as part of his past. What do you say, Ann?

-- Torn in Texas
Dear Torn: You describe your relationship with Jeff as "healthy." I don't know about the health of a relationship when the guy insists on hanging onto an ex-girlfriend's nightgown. He may still be hung up on her, and you should make sure of his feelings before you get married.

Meanwhile, don't insist on anything, and make no further inquiries about that particular piece of sleep apparel. In time, I'm betting it will "disappear." And when that happens, don't even ask him what he did with it. It will have lost its significance and probably ended up in his old sock drawer.

Butt out

Dear Ann Landers: I know you probably don't want anymore tattoo letters, but I hope you will print mine. We could all use a laugh these days.

A few years ago, my adult daughter excitedly informed me that she had gotten a tattoo. It was on the upper portion of her right buttock. It said, "Tight." Of course, I was not very happy about her body adornment, and I asked her, "What are you going to do when you get old and your butt sags?" She responded, "I'll tattoo 'used to be' above it."

-- Beverley in Pontiac, Mich.
Dear Pontiac: Your daughter seems to have solved the problem, so I guess I'll butt out.

Problems? Dump on Ann. Write her at The Buffalo News, P.O. Box 100, Buffalo, N.Y. 14240.

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