Dear Miss Emily:

I am a 16 year old girl who met a guy at a local wrestling organization. He's really sweet, and we hit it off instantly. We've only known each other for a little while, but we have been talking a lot, and we have even exchanged gifts on occasion. Recently, however, we were talking and he asked if I had a boyfriend, which I replied no. Then he asked if he could have the honor to go out with me. I haven't replied since then. It wouldn't be such a problem if he wasn't 28 years old. (I am fairly sure he knows how old I am, or he thinks I am a few years older). I go to this wrestling with my parents (which he knows are my parents), so it's not as if I am completely alone. Another thing is, he does not have a car, and we would only see each other one day of the week, at wrestling, since we do not live near one another. I am not sure whether to go with it, because he really is nice and I like him (it wouldn't be all the time), or do I politely tell him no, and if so, how?  I haven't/will not tell my parents, because they would try to send him to jail, which is something I can't let happen. I don't want to ruin our friendship, but at the same time, I don't want to hurt his feelings. And I do like him. I am lost. Please help me.

------------------Miss Emily's advice----------------

My heart feels your pain because, when you meet a nice guy, it's hard to let him go.  But you seen to have an insight as to why this is not good.  If your parents would object to the point of threatening this guy to leave you alone, or else, what can you do but politely tell him that your parents would go ballistic?  It's not an excuse, it's the truth.  Your only recourse, other than lying and turning this into something that could cause your tremendous grief, is to continue the friendship and see how it progresses until you turn eighteen.  Maybe it will be too late for you to get something going with him, but it's dangerous to play a game when the odds are stacked against you.  Let him know the circumstance.  If he's such a great guy, he will understand.