Dear Carol

"Dear Carol, I think I'm ready for my first kiss"

Dear Carol, 

I’m 13 years old and I think I’m ready for my first kiss. There is this guy who’s had a crush on me all year. About four months ago, I started to like him, too. We hang out and flirt all the time, and it’s finally not awkward. The problem is, I told one of my friends that I planned to kiss him, and she told him. I do want to kiss him, but I don’t want to make it a whole thing with my friends or my family finding out. Also, I was texting in a group chat with my friends (as well as the guy who I like and likes me back), and he made a joke. I didn’t get the joke, so I asked him to explain it. The joke was about me and him doing stuff, and it was kinda gross and made me uncomfortable. He apologized and agreed it went too far and said he’d never do that again. Should I even continue liking him?

-  First Kiss

Dear First Kiss,

You might want to press pause on all this for now, or at least not feel pressured to continue full speed ahead. You told a friend you planned to kiss him, but you’re not under a contract. And if it feels like everyone is expecting you two to make a move, that’s not a good reason to do anything at all. Look, he apologized about the lewd joke, so you don’t have to write him off entirely. But there’s also no need to ignore how you feel or talk yourself into continuing to like him. Take a moment to recalibrate and decide where you stand. If you find you are still interested in each other, try not to approach these feelings as a group activity up for public scrutiny.

Carol Weston is the author of 16 books including Speed of Life, Ava and Pip and Girltalk: All the Stuff Your Sister Never Told You. Learn more at and on Instagram @carolwestonnyc.

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by GL | 9/30/2023