Life Advice



Single File: What -- Me Marry?

Life Advice / Single File /

DEAR SUSAN: Recently, a reader praised one of your past columns, "What -- Me Marry?" He said it was good advice, to be remembered when considering marriage. He was so enthusiastic that I'm curious to read it for myself. I'm wondering whether you would repeat it -- or at least the best parts. -- From the "Single File" blog

DEAR BLOGGER: A firm ...Read more

Single File: Letting Off Steam

Life Advice / Single File /

Whenever someone learns what I do for a living, out pours a torrent of past dating slights. For the first years -- "Single File" is in its 40th year -- I absorbed the slings and arrows, and certain people learned to live with my branch of journalism (and their dating woes), but that was not to be. Yes, there have been a few periods of relative ...Read more

Single File: No-Fun Games

Life Advice / Single File /

DEAR SUSAN: I agree that the timing of a phone call is just the beginning of game playing that women use with men. I'd like to expose some of the more serious games they play -- games that they may think are cute but that in reality are stupid and potentially dangerous, often with lasting effects.

There's the "I'm pregnant" game, sometimes a ...Read more

Single File: Entanglements

Life Advice / Single File /

DEAR SUSAN: It's hard to believe I'm actually writing this letter! I live in a tight community, and it seems as if there's no one to honestly communicate with regarding my predicament -- so here I am, asking for your advice. I'm 17, but through various twists of life, I've always been part of organizations and communities that have people twice ...Read more

Single File: Asking Too Much?

Life Advice / Single File /

DEAR SUSAN: An avid reader of "Single File," I have had the urge many times to respond to a reader's letter or to comments you made about a reader's problem. Today I must respond to your thoughts on partnership. As a single woman who is 42 years old, I am devastated that my chances of marrying are about 1 percent. In fact, your column made clear...Read more

Single File: Self-Supporting

Life Advice / Single File /

DEAR SUSAN: One comment regarding the very bitter man who wrote about your supposed man-bashing: I think it's funny he even assumes that most women want a breadwinner. Yes, I agree there are women out there looking for security, but most of the ones I know dearly want to be just as independent and self-supporting in a relationship as ...Read more

Single File: Nice Equals Boring?

Life Advice / Single File /

DEAR SUSAN: Your column is incredibly saturated with whining about niceness and all the evil people who don't appreciate it/them. Our society obviously is ruled by self-interest, so it's ironic that all these nice, lonely people are afraid to introduce themselves to someone else. Is meeting someone new really so bad? Are you nice people just too...Read more

Single File: The Game

Life Advice / Single File /

Funny thing about this game of dating: The name doesn't square with reality. And anyone who's been unattached more than an hour will agree that it doesn't qualify as a "game," which implies casual fun and broad smiles, removal from this world of care.

Hoo-ha! It just ain't so -- and never will be. The first date is a sure bet for two Aleves -- ...Read more

Single File: Scared to Death

Life Advice / Single File /

DEAR SUSAN: A 42-year-old professional woman, I'm new to the single world -- and scared to death. I have been away from this type of thing for 15 years and, with an 18-year-old daughter, don't want to end up in a place where her friends hang out. I've been reading "Single File" and the letters that come to you out of neediness. Is it really that...Read more


Single File: Ex-etiquette - Be wary of Valentine's Day-inspired red flags

Life Advice / Single File /

Q. Ironically, my divorce was final last Valentine’s Day. Over the last year my ex and I have both done some soul searching. We broke up because he cheated — but he has apologized many times and I’m thinking about trying it again. I think this Valentine’s Day would be a great day to start over. I’d like to suggest it, but I don’t ...Read more

Single File: Cougar?

Life Advice / Single File /

DEAR SUSAN: I'm not fond of the "cougar" appellation myself. I've been called one, but never by anyone who knows the real me -- or at least not to my face. Anyway, my husband is 31, and I'm 51. I've dated other men -- meaning men my age -- but I've always gotten along better with younger ones. Younger ones are likelier to be spontaneous and fun....Read more

Single File: Put-downs and Silence

Life Advice / Single File /

DEAR SUSAN: The propaganda that hurts us by race, religion or gender often comes from a small number of people, but when shared, it infects many. For most, it might not lead to hatred of a group or religion or gender, but it does cause many to feel animosity, whether they would admit it or not. There are men who would put down women but are ...Read more

Single File: Turning Back Time

Life Advice / Single File /

DEAR SUSAN: I broke up with my boyfriend of six months two days ago. There wasn't any specific reason or something he did wrong. On the contrary, he's a wonderful man who has shown love for me in every way possible. He's dealing admirably with the breakup, but I'm taking it much harder. Normally, I'd imagine this means I was wrong in breaking up...Read more

Single File: The Only One?

Life Advice / Single File /

DEAR SUSAN: I am about to break up with my partner of 17 years, but we are quite sure we will continue to live together. I feel as if we're the only ones who've ever done such a thing. Are we? -- From the "Single File" blog

DEAR BLOGGER: If you are indeed the only person ever to remain under the same roof with a former lover -- and my best ...Read more