Dear Miss Emily,

About a month ago, I meet this Junior at my school. Our meeting was actually an accident. Previously I had taken notice of his friend and had begun to have feelings for him. But this new guy, unlike the other one was willing to talk to me, even though I'm only a freshman. Since then me and the new guy have gotten close, to a point where he feels comfortable calling me beautiful, pretty, and openly flirting with me. I often feel at a disadvantage because my flirtation techniques are juvenile compared to his. Yet after the 1st week of our flirtation, he mentioned his girlfriend. Since then, I haven't treated him any differently than when we first meet, but now my eyes are open, looking for any sign that he may be only using me. I'm afraid that he may be a player. But that is only half of my problems, the other half involves him being two years older than me. Since he's 17 and I'm only 15, I'm afraid that he may be worried that our relationship may be pointless because next year he'll be a senior. And finally, the last of my problem is that he may be putting me into the friend category and that is somewhere I don't want to end up. What should I do?

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

Some guys just can't help themselves when they're around a pretty girl who's smart. But he has a girlfriend, and he's a little out-of-bounds by flirting with you so blatantly. It's not using you if you think about how some people operate. He fancies himself to be quite a catch, I'm sure, and he's letting you in on it. If it's an either, or, thing with you (you want him to pursue you in earnest, otherwise no friendship) cool the flirtation on your end. If he wonder why, tell him "I'm starting to feel sorry for your girlfriend." Snap! No matter what age, it's just not wise to get in too deep when someone is involved with another person. Protect your heart by using your head, and always put it in perspective. Now, all this said, if you find you can't help yourself when it comes to his irresistible charm, try to have fun with it. A learning experience, if you will. You're in control, but only if you understand that to be true.