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Girlfriend 101: don't want your brand-new BF to make like a tree and leave? Check out our tried-and-true tips....

Got a great new BF? Congrats! You've gotten over the first big hurdle of teen dating: finding a cool guy who's way worthy of you. But here comes that second hurdle: knowing the secrets of being the GF he can't wait to hang out with.

Silence is golden One of the biggest mistakes a new GF can make? Blabbing to the gang about the mushy text messages he sends you, how he goes out of his way to walk you to soccer practice and the funny little IM exchange you two had last night. Of course, it's all wonderful and adorable, but ...

The truth is, most guys don't like their love lives becoming fodder for gossip sessions. Once he catches wind of your loose-lip fests, he'll likely be less than happy about it. So keep those details on the DL.

Let freedom ring As much as you like being alone with your guy, you two will be spending hang time with his crew, too. Nobody says you have to like them all, but they're his buddies so be pleasant, at the very least.

That said, you don't want to be the constant tag-along gal. Just like you and your friends enjoy a girls' night out, your boyfriend deserves to have guy-bonding time. Don't take his wanting to hang with the guys as a rejection of you or your new relationship. It's actually healthy for couples to do things apart from each other. Besides, if you spend every waking moment with your boy, you two are bound to get bored.

Stay true to you Changing for a BF is bad, bad, bad. If he' really a good guy, he should like you for who you are. A guy who pressures you to lose weight or put on more makeup or wear different clothes, isn't worth a minute of your time. This is not to say he can't make suggestions ("You're really cute in that red halter"), but your personal style is ultimately up to you.

Also, don't pretend to be someone you're not. Don't tell him you love Slipknot when you're into Jessica Simpson or that you're an avid water-skier if you can barely tread water. You'll wind up miserable at a metal concert or drowning in the deceit when he's eventually on to you. If he turns you on to something that genuinely interests you, great. You never knew baseball was such a blast? You two can munch nachos together while watching the World Series.

No need to be needy Yes, you adore him. But your new guy doesn't define who you are, and you definitely don't need him. A guy can tire very quickly of a girl who follows him around like a puppy and hangs on his every move. He'll have loads more respect and find you much more attractive if you show him that you have your own goals and passions in life.

Guys like girls who are confident with themselves and can blaze their own trails. Don't leave him 10 messages in one day and expect him to be thrilled about it. In fact, that can be just plain scary. If he's unavailable for the moment, leave it at that and find something else to do (besides sitting by the phone waiting for a return call, please).

Think line a guy As in, live for the moment. Girls tend to fantasize about the future while guys ... don't. Telling him how much you're looking forward to the months-away Christmas dance, while he's looking forward to a cheese-steak for lunch, is a recipe for disaster.

The trick is not to obsess or set yourself up for disappointment. Enjoy your time with him, and take things lightly. Instead of talking about twirling under the mistletoe, do the guy thing and chat about what vid to rent tonight. Keep the drama on your TV, or you might hear these two words: The End.
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Author:Sorocco, Erika
Publication:Girls' Life
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Aug 1, 2004
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