Life Advice



Single File: Safety Zone

Susan Dietz on

DEAR SUSAN: You recently printed a letter from a woman who said she is attracted to married men. Well, I, too, seem to be drawn to husbands. Of course, I'd never get involved with one. Plus, these men are out of my reach because they're loyal to their wives. (Maybe that's part of the attraction.) I do feel guilty, though, especially if I'm friends with the wife. Do you have any advice about this? -- From the "Single File" blog

DEAR BLOGGER: Your situation has haunted me for a while now, and the complete answer took shape last night during a particularly long shampoo under the shower. Married men have a distinctive aura, radiating safety and security for women facing the rigors of dating. These spoken-for charmers can also offer double scoops of consideration, kindness and caring. Of course they can offer all those goodies! They know that after meeting you, they're going home to dear Wifey and their real life, the one with family and children.

So why your strong attraction to this type of nowhere man? It's nothing less than a primeval urge to compete with Mommy for Daddy! (Take a second to let that sink in, but do continue reading.) It was an astounding finding in my survey on single sexuality, but the codified figures proved that with an unknowing spouse in the triangle, single women's enthusiasm for the married men in their lives (and there are lots of them) stayed robust, but when Wifey was aware of the arrangement (and made no fuss about it), their enthusiasm plummeted. The married man may not realize it, but his strongest pheromone is the female competitive nature when the fruit is forbidden. When out in the open, not so much. Now that you have scientific data, dear reader, isn't it time to move on to more fertile fields? (Ahem.)

DEAR SUSAN: I've been involved with a man for almost nine years. When we first met, he was separated and living with a woman he planned to marry when his divorce was finalized. Soon after we met, he stopped phoning, and I had no way to reach him. Three years later, he called, saying he had married that woman but it didn't work out. He was calling from out of state and said he'd call again when he was back on the job.

My question to you, Susan: Should I give him a chance to explain what happened, or should I feel insulted that he walked out on me and came back years later? -- From the "Single File" blog


DEAR BLOGGER: Unless you relish a life of hide-and-seek, of always being unsure where he is and what he's doing -- and with whom -- sign off on this trouble man. He'd never give you anything but mixed messages and heartache. Be a smart cookie; don't crumble, but do change your phone number ASAP. Take some long walks this week to brush him out of your hair. Clear your head for the possibilities that tomorrow can bring.


We've uncovered another treasure trove of "Single File" paperbacks -- in perfect condition, signed by Susan, ready to enjoy. Send $15 and your address: Susan Deitz, C/O Creators Syndicate, 737 3rd Street, Hermosa Beach, CA, 90254. Have a question for Susan? You can reach her directly at



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