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Dear Abby: I’m a 14-year-old girl with a problem. Because of my buzzed short hair, slim hips and flat chest, I frequently get mistaken for a boy. It really bothers me because, despite my haircut and body shape, I have a feminine face and I wear women’s clothes and makeup. I’m not too much of a tomboy.

Sometimes when someone addresses me with a male pronoun or in some other way mistakes me for a male, I’m too nervous to correct them. Is there a clever or witty way to correct the mistake?

– Not A Boy in Brooklyn

Dear Not A Boy: The person who made the mistake is the one who should be embarrassed, not you. If it happens again, all you need to do is smile and say, “I’m all girl.”

Proposal protocols

Dear Abby: I have been dating a woman, and I am considering proposing to her. We have discussed engagement rings and she wants to design her own, which I think is great. However, I am unsure exactly what to do regarding the actual proposal. What ring should I give her, knowing that whatever I give her will not be her ultimate engagement ring?

– Soon to Pop the Question

Dear Soon to Pop: Marriage proposals happen in many situations and in many ways. There are no rules, and dropping to one knee and offering a ring is optional. The engagement does not begin when a woman starts wearing a ring; it begins when she accepts the proposal. All you need to do is say, “Will you marry me?” When she says yes, you can then decide when you both would like to select a stone for her engagement ring.

Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Write Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 60069.