Life Advice





Single File: Reader Mail

Life Advice / Single File /

DEAR SUSAN: Hopefully by now you've gotten some email in support of your position on the engagement ring issue. This widely and fervently held and programmed belief is just one more symptom of the stranglehold marketing has on our culture, overriding all. -- Mike

DEAR MIKE: You and I may be the only humanoids on planet Earth who see the ring ...Read more


Barton Goldsmith: Paying it forward helps to build a better brain

Life Advice / Dating Advice /

We are all being made much more aware of how we have to exercise our brains to keep them in shape for the long term. Many people do puzzles like crosswords and sudoku, but I have a suggestion for another means of brain building that will make your life better as well as the lives of others.

As a therapist, I am constantly using my brain to ...Read more


Erika Ettin: Do dating apps work?

Life Advice / Dating Advice /

A question I get all the time, from clients and strangers alike, is “Do dating apps work?”

Here’s the thing: Any app can be efficient or successful, depending on what you put out there and how proactive you are in the process. If you put up six mediocre pictures and no writeup and expect to attract quality people, you’ll be sorely ...Read more

Singing With Grandma, Against All Odds

Life Advice / Dear Annie /

Dear Annie: My husband comes from a large blended family. His mom is married to a man he has known as his stepdad for his entire life.

Recently, our teenage daughter revealed that she's uncomfortable around this stepdad because he gropes her inappropriately while hugging and greeting her. My husband mentioned this to his mother and stepdad and ...Read more

Ask Amy: Partner is offended by tasteless gift

Life Advice / Ask Amy /

Dear Amy: My partner, “Chris” just showed me a gift he bought for his adult son. This gift is a “verified” personal calling card once owned by Adolf Hitler (Hitler allegedly gave them out to people he would meet).

Chris purchased this card from an American museum’s rare items collection and spent quite a bit of money for it.

He finds...Read more

Annie's Mailbox: Paying the Price for the Ex

Life Advice / Annie's Mailbox /

Dear Annie: I am married to "Chris," a wonderful man. He was previously married and has major trust issues because of his ex-wife. I can handle most of this, but one thing has become worse over the past two years.

Chris has this idea that I wear outfits that show too much skin and attract other men. But, Annie, I don't wear clothes like that. ...Read more

Science Advice Goddess: Endship Ring

I was roommates with a girl five years ago. I was a spoiled brat for many years, but I've worked very hard to change. She, on the other hand, is still supported by her father, has no job or interests, and just wants to get married. Whenever she calls, she wants advice on the same boy drama. I just don't have the time or patience for this ...Read more

What Does It Take to Have a Long and Happy Marriage?

Life Advice / Dear Annie /

Dear Annie: With an estimated 2.5 million couples planning on getting married this year, how can those of us who have successfully navigated marriage over the years help these couples succeed once the honeymoon phase begins to wane?

The internet and social media are filled with marital doom and gloom, and even the relationship counselors ...Read more

Ask Amy: Donor-conceived children should be told

Life Advice / Ask Amy /

Dear Amy: I have read advice in your column suggesting that it is wisest to tell children about their adoption starting very young.

My six-year-old twin grandchildren have never been told that their momma’s eggs came from an egg donor.

The parents are now divorced but are very friendly.

Should they tell the kids?

Their momma carried them ...Read more

Annie's Mailbox: Too Much

Life Advice / Annie's Mailbox /

Dear Annie: For the past five years, I've been with the most wonderful woman. "Jane" and I plan to marry, but we haven't set a date because she has two adult daughters who still live at home, and their future plans are unsettled.

Her younger daughter, "Trudi," is 24 and recovering from a debilitating gambling problem. Trudi lost her job, got ...Read more

Mel Melcon/Los Angeles Times/TNS

In their search for love, South Asians swipe right on dating apps catered for them

Life Advice / Dating Advice /

LOS ANGELES — Most swiping for love on a dating app know the drill.

Strategically pen an inviting self-description. Select filters — age, geographic proximity — for potential partners. Perhaps declare intentions: Looking for something serious? Something casual?

The dating app Mirchi presents another possibility: "Auntie made me sign up....Read more

Haunted by Wife's Affairs

Life Advice / Dear Annie /

Dear Annie: I recently learned that my spouse had a brief affair with someone else early in our relationship. He was an old lover with whom she had had an affair years before, when he was still married.

When first confronted, her response was to give a long string of excuses denying blame. When asked why she had done this, she said she had ...Read more

Ask Amy: Parents want to give daughter a nudge

Life Advice / Ask Amy /

Dear Amy: My daughter is 34 years old, single, with no children. She’s intelligent and well educated.

Six months ago, she quit her job in another state and moved into our house. We welcomed her, but it was supposed to be temporary.

She seemed reluctant to come here to begin with, saying that she didn’t want to intrude into our lives. ...Read more

Annie's Mailbox: A Confused Wife

Life Advice / Annie's Mailbox /

Dear Annie: My husband and I have been happily married for eight years, and we have two beautiful children. Recently, an ex-boyfriend called to let me know that his father had died. I hadn't heard from him in 12 years.

"Matt" and I began speaking regularly and even spent some time together. My husband knew all of this and was OK with it. One ...Read more

Not Just the Loudest Shall Inherit the Earth

I was never loud. When I was in my early 20s, I ran into a lady who remembered me as a child. "You were so quiet as a child, with those big blue eyes that would just stare up at me," she said. "It was disturbing."

She wasn't wrong. I could see how I may have been both quiet and disquieting. As an only child, I was usually a little pre-adult in ...Read more

Mother-in-Law Must Not Move In

Life Advice / Dear Annie /

Dear Annie: My husband has a small family, and his mom is single. My husband and I have two children in elementary school. My husband and I both hope to move to a bigger home in the near future.

My mother-in-law is very nice, and we get along well. She is always willing to help out. She recently retired, and she continues to make comments to ...Read more

Ask Amy: Special needs child really needs good uncles

Life Advice / Ask Amy /

Dear Amy: I have a 9-year-old special needs child. “Kyle” is high-functioning on the autism spectrum, but doesn’t do well with athletics and other “typical” settings that might help a child fit in, make friends, and otherwise have a functional childhood dynamic.

We worry that he is becoming more socially isolated. We are very engaged ...Read more

Annie's Mailbox: Worried Family

Life Advice / Annie's Mailbox /

Dear Annie: My brother-in-law, "Travis," has been in a relationship with his girlfriend, "Kristin," for eight years. They now have two young children. Kristin has cheated on him too many times to count and continues to do so. They fight about it constantly.

The problem is that Travis is so wrapped up in what Kristin is doing with various other ...Read more

Drowning in My Dreams

Life Advice / Dear Annie /

Dear Annie: They say it's normal not to forget your first love. Is reaching out to them crossing a line?

Life for me was like a rom-com movie. I grew up as the girl next door in a gorgeous home. I was in love with the boy next door; let's call him "Ryan." We both went to different schools, but we made time to see each other daily. We had a ...Read more

Ask Amy: Family vacation might be riled by new spouse

Life Advice / Ask Amy /

Dear Amy: My husband, kids, and I live in a different state than most of my family.

We are planning a trip to my family's state and would like to invite my parents and grandmothers to rent a cabin for a few nights.

I don't see my grandmothers often as they are not well enough to travel too far.

I want to be able to enjoy a wonderful and ...Read more