Dear Annie: Am I turning into a curmudgeon as I get older, or are couples today way more comfortable being physical in public? I recently went to a concert with my husband, something I’d been looking forward to for weeks. But I couldn’t concentrate on what was happening on the stage. That’s because seated next to us was a young couple, probably in their early 20s, putting on quite another kind of show - tongues down each other’s throats, hands all over the place.
If this had just been a brief moment of PDA, I wouldn’t have cared. But they behaved that way for the entire hour-long concert, barely even looking at the stage. I had to wonder why they’d even bothered to go out. I tried shooting them some death glares, but they didn’t notice. (Go figure.)
My husband thought it was inappropriate, too, but he told me I was letting it bother me too much. He’s good at tuning things out. He also said we probably did similar things when we were their age. I told him that if he did anything similar to that in public, it certainly wasn’t with me.
Annie, what do you think? Do I need to loosen up? - Grossed Out
Dear Grossed: You don’t need to loosen up. They need to settle down. I’m not totally against couples showing affection in public, of course. A brief peck on the cheek or lips? Aw. But tongues and wandering hands? Ew.
Couples who are guilty of the latter: It’s wonderful that you’re so enthusiastic about each other. But for all of our sakes, please, save it for home.
Dear Annie: This week is National Eating Disorders Awareness Week. People often think that only women suffer from eating disorders, but in reality, eating disorders and body dissatisfaction do not have any biases - gender, ethnicity, income level or age. They affect people of all walks of life. Eating disorders are real medical conditions that require treatment. In fact, eating disorders have the highest rate of mortality of any mental illness, but of the 30 million men and women who will suffer from a clinically significant eating disorder during their lifetime, only a tenth will seek treatment.
As someone who works to raise awareness about eating disorders, I want people to know that there are free and anonymous eating disorder screenings available for the public at http://www.mybodyscreening.org. People who complete a screening are provided with local resources and can take the first step toward healing. Treatment works. I hope those in need or their loved ones will take this screening. It’s time to talk about it! – Massachusetts Advocate
Dear Massachusetts: Thank you so much for shedding light on this important issue. I encourage anyone who is battling an eating disorder to talk to his or her physician about treatment immediately. Disorders such as anorexia nervosa and bulimia can cause irreversible damage and death. Please don’t wait to get help.