Life Advice


Health & Spirit

Readers Sound Off

Today, we hear from Jennifer, Andrea and Emma, who offer advice on birth control, co-dependency and living together. Do you agree?

JENNIFER: People who think birth control is always reliable need to be better informed. Every single one has a failure rate. I personally know two women who had children after a tubal ligation. One of them had ...Read more

Family Secrets Revealed: Part II

When she was 68, Carol, who had been given up at birth, found her original birth certificate. For the first time, she learned the name of her birth mother. After some sleuthing on the computer, she found her brother. She called him.

"After a little silence, we conversed for half an hour and agreed to meet on the weekend. I drove to his house ...Read more

Can Your Family Secrets Top These?

Today, Babe opens up the vault and lets some of her family secrets fall out.

When she was 18, her older sister Gladys married Henry. "He was a quiet, gentle, guy who loved to paint. She was abrasive, controlling, cruel, domineering and combative. She was used to getting what she wanted."

Babe says Gladys and Henry were married for 10 years ...Read more

When Fantasy Becomes Reality

The older woman-younger man scenario has been the fuel of many a young boy's fantasy. It goes something like this: The somewhat naive, painfully inexperienced young boy who doesn't have many friends and isn't appreciated by girls his own age (but is nevertheless witty, ironic and wise beyond his years) meets an older, more experienced woman.

...Read more

Quit Communicating Through the Internet!

Dear Cheryl: I intercepted a message from my wife of 30 years to her nephew. She was using our Facebook account.

The message read, in part: "We're getting ready to move and it makes me nervous. In five years I get a life of my own. Until then I just need to survive and go through the motions, put on a happy face and pretend."

Here's some ...Read more

It Really Wasn't Much of a Choice

Barbara has two younger sisters and a brother. She says she was always treated differently than them because of her weight and her medical problems. "My mom and my sisters always thought I was faking despite all the doctors' visits, labs, tests, and hospital stays I've undergone for years," she says.

When she started dating, the tension in ...Read more

Honor and Obey These 'Rents?

The Bible tells us to honor our mothers and fathers, but sometimes you have to wonder why.

SANDI: My family had something bad to say about every fellow I dated, no matter who he was. My dad would mock and mimic him, and my mother would assassinate his character. I finally came to the conclusion that they just wanted me to spend my life at ...Read more

Maybe the Title Doesn't Fit, but She May Still Be Delusional

One fact has gotten lost in all the give and take between If the Cougar Fits, me and you. And that fact is that if she dates these guys who are 20-plus years younger than her, how is she going to keep it a secret from her kids, the oldest of whom is 17?

What do you think about starting a relationship, even a casual one, with a secret and all ...Read more

The Cougar and I

I've been having a bit of a dialogue with If the Cougar Fits. She's the 44-year-old who's divorcing her "immature" husband. Her oldest child is 17. She's been hanging out with 20-something guys who'd like to be more than friends, and she's enjoying the attention.

"I'm discovering the girl I used to be. It almost feels like I'm picking up ...Read more

Are Families Really Like Kleenex?

Are families disposable, like diapers, paper plates and razors? Can you really substitute one for another and just go on with your life?

Janet was married to Bob, a fireman, for 30 years. They have three children together.

She received a phone call at work one spring day from a man who asked her why her husband was calling his wife, Kathy, ...Read more

A Mixed Bag

Today's column is about why some men cheat, a man who never will and the S-word.

PETER: Sometimes men cheat because they can't deal with one of the side effects of getting older. As a man approaches his later years, he may experience loss of sexual function, which can be devastating. If he's too embarrassed to tell his doctor, he may seek out...Read more

As the Twig Is Bent

Certain rules have to be followed, or things go haywire. One of those rules is parents have to be the parents, and children must be allowed to be children. Children are not supposed to be their parents' friend; or worse, their confidant; or worse, their confessor.

That very basic covenant was broken. Ellen didn't stand a chance.

Ellen's ...Read more

Is It a Curse or a Blessing?

Dear Cheryl: I was lying in bed in a rehabilitation facility after getting my first hip replacement when I was served a summons for divorce. This was after 31 years of marriage. My heart was broken. I tried everything I could think of to get her to change her mind, but she refused. I'm so hurt and depressed I don't feel like going on. -- Lost ...Read more

Your Thoughts on the Cougar

If the Cougar Fits is the 44-year-old who's getting divorced and interested in dating guys in their 20s. She doesn't want a serious relationship with them or sex. I gave her my opinion. Here are yours ...

ALLISON: Her husband was controlling and immature, and she thinks she's going to have better luck with guys in their 20s? Oh, wait; I see! ...Read more

I May Be Snarky, but She May Be Unrealistic

We recently heard from If the Cougar Fits. She's the 44-year-old who's divorcing her "immature" husband. Her oldest child is 17. She's been hanging out with 20-something guys who'd like to be more than friends, and she's enjoying the attention.

"I'm discovering the girl I used to be," she says. "It almost feels like I'm picking up where I ...Read more

That Special Moment When It All Became Clear

How did you know your relationship was over? Did she send you a text? Did he leave you a voicemail? Did he unfriend you?

You knew it was over when:

...he got his bimbo pregnant while we were still married.

...he demonstrated how spineless he was by saying, "I can't hurt my kids by dating you."

...the guy I'd been talking to on the ...Read more

Finally, a Happy Ending

We recently met Meredith. She had been sexually abused by her brother and father, had briefly worked as a prostitute and had been divorced four times. A nervous breakdown after her last divorce landed her in a psychiatric hospital.

That's where she says she learned about "abuse, self-esteem, and co-dependency" and why she had been gaining ...Read more

Finally, a Turning Point

Did you ever meet someone who was so messed up you wondered, "What happened to them? How did they get that way?"

Meredith says she's never been adequately diagnosed, but she guesses she was "developmentally slow" or maybe has a "touch of autism." She didn't talk until she was 6. Her mother couldn't cope and pawned her off on relatives.

That ...Read more

Cuddling Is Not an Option

Dear Cheryl: I'm in the process of filing for divorce from my husband (he's controlling and immature), and I'm discovering the girl I used to be. It almost feels like I'm picking up where I left off, at age 25 when I got married.

I've recently made friends with some guys. Some have indicated they'd like to be more than friends. The awkward part...Read more

I Knew There'd Never Be a Second Date

Some nonjudgmental people believe everyone deserves a second chance. Even if a first date is a total disaster, they'll hang in there for one more. But even they have their limits ...

Here are times when you've said, "I knew I'd there'd never be a second date when ..."

"... I raised my glass of wine to toast her and she asked, 'Is that Rolex ...Read more


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