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Ask Alia: Got Questions? VOX’s New Advice Columnist Has The Answers!

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This new advice column, “Ask Alia,” is for those of you who don’t know who to turn to when you are curious or confused. Trust me, I know how it goes with parents and life: If you ask the question, they are going to automatically confuse your intentions or judge you. You ask your parents about sex, and they are ready to lock you inside your room. I would hate for you to have to find out everything about life through social media, pornography, or through trial and error. Come on and walk with me for a second.

Here is why you can trust me: I was born here in southwest Atlanta in a poor neighborhood. I grew up the youngest of four girls and two boys. I was the quiet and anti-social one, but through those years of being silent, I got to observe. I got to notice the mistakes that my siblings made and kept notes on what not to do. I observed unplanned pregnancies, molestation (this person is now far, far away) and a continuous cycle of divorce. My life motto was and is “Why follow the path if I know that it leads to destruction?” I’ve had my share of unhealthy relationships. When I say that you can ask me about any topic, I do mean it. This, my friends, is what I am trying to show you. Using observations and experiences, I will answer all of your questions so that you too can follow the right path. Now, this is not me calling myself perfect, but I can help you do what others forget to do: Learn from your mistakes. Here are a few questions from your fellow ATLiens that I answered honestly:

Q: I think my boyfriend is texting me from another number to make sure that I won’t cheat on him (he and this other guy like the same things, and every time I ask the other guy to meet, so that I can see who he is, he always makes some excuse about why he can’t). What do I do?

Alia: OK. I am going to be completely honest with you: If you have a boyfriend, you should not be entertaining anyone else anyways. If you and the other guy have been talking for a while, it is most likely not your boyfriend. You might have just found someone that has a lot in common with your boyfriend. Also, you should not be trying to meet anyone but close friends and your boyfriend. That is what causes a lot of problems in a relationship. Consider talking to your boyfriend to see if he would actually do something like that, and if he trusts you. Trust should be the biggest factor in a relationship.

Q: What is the hardest temptation about sex?

Alia: Everyone is attracted to the feeling it gives you. It’s like a drug, and you get addicted to the good feeling. That good feeling tends to blind you, and you hurt people. Others use sex to try and belong to something or someone. They feel that sex is the only way to the heart, and for some people, maybe that is true. My advice for you is to hold out as long as you can if you are a virgin. If you are not a virgin, that is fine, but to ensure that sex does not hurt you in any way possible, watch who you give it up to. And if you are considering becoming sexually active, please use to protect against sexually transmitted diseases and infections and unplanned pregnancies. Teens in Atlanta can also rely on the nonprofit Georgia Campaign For Adolescent Power and Potential for valuable resources. Here’s a link to their adolescent resource guide.

Q: Why do parents stay tripping?

Alia: That’s some real Atlanta slang right there! Parents have seen a lot in their life. A lot of our parents went down the wrong path, having kids at young ages. They want better for us, that’s all. Sometimes, it can be a lot, I know, but be grateful that you have caring parents. I used to ask myself the same question: “Why doesn’t she trust me? Why can’t I have freedom?” I realized that my mom wants me to be better than her, to do better. Take that thought and run with it. You are in good hands.

I would like to thank you for your questions, and I hope that my words were helpful. And check out the second edition of “Ask Alia” coming next week on the VOXATL website.

If you have a question for Alia, email it to her at

Alia, 17, attends Cristo Rey Atlanta Jesuit High School and is a teen realist.

Editor’s Note: While Alia’s advice is intended to help other teens, she is not a trained professional and the advice dispensed in “Ask Alia” is not meant to replace professional help. VOX has a resource guide for many of the challenges teens face. You can find a link to help here.

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