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I’m 37 weeks pregnant today — considered full-term (or early-term, depending on whom you ask; either way, doctors agree this is considered a safe zone for delivery) — and this will probably be my last pregnancy update. Ever! I saw my OB yesterday and she said she wouldn’t be surprised if I deliver in the next week (and I feel like I’m having some typical signs of imminent labor). Of course, there’s no guarantee when this baby will come, and I could easily go another two or three weeks. But, in my gut, I think some time in the next week sounds about right. It might also be wishful thinking — I’m increasingly uncomfortable and the heat wave I see in the forecast for next week sounds unpleasant. [click to continue…]



It’s recently been reported that Charlize Theron dumped Sean Penn by way of ghosting, which is a breakup tactic in which the dumper falls off the face of the planet never to be heard from again by the dumpee. We know a little about that here. The New York Times was so intrigued by this seemingly new concept called ghosting that they dug around a little and found actual people who had been ghosted, and some who had done the ghosting, to explain what it is and why someone would use such a tactic to end a relationship. [click to continue…]


No, it’s not Friday yet (sorry, it’s just Tuesday), but since I expect many of you will be enjoying a shortened week/long holiday weekend, I thought I’d post Shortcuts a few days early. Plus, I don’t have any letters at the moment I feel inspired to answer (so, if you have a burning/juicy relationship question, send it in!).

For every question, I’ll give my advice in just a few sentences because sometimes the answer to a person’s question is so obvious and the need to hear it so great that being as clear and frank as possible is simply the best way to go.

Is it inappropriate for the sister of my soon-to-be son-in-law to physically hang all over her 30-year-old brother? My friends and family think it is, I am embarrassed by it, and my daughter is beyond frustrated with it. We were at the beach and my daughter and her fiancé were hugging in the ocean when the 18-year-old sister goes up to her brother and wraps her arms and legs around him. Isn’t this inappropriate? It is very awkward and embarrassing for everyone else, though their parents see nothing wrong with this. The rest of us think it’s weird and looks bad. The sister pretty much demands attention from her brother and he really does not say too much for fear of what his parents will say or of upsetting his sister. How exactly should this be handled? — Extremely Disgusted By This Public Display

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[Timothy Goodman for the New York Times]

Over the weekend, the New York Times reported that “maiden names are on the rise,” which is weird way of saying that more women than ever (20% of those who have married in recent years) are opting to keep their own last names (and an additional 10% hyphenate or legally change their last name while keeping their given name professionally). This percentage is up from a dip in the 80s and 90s after a surge in the 70s when women kept their last names mainly for political/feminist reasons. These days, while feminism is still a motivating factor, it isn’t the biggest reason women don’t change their names upon getting married.
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Dos and Don'ts of a New Relationship

I’m like the stupid girlfriend you spoke of in “He Doesn’t See a Future with Me” (dated September 7, 2011). Like the LW, my boyfriend told me he didn’t see a future will me. Even though I was looking for a long-term commitment and he told me up front that he did not want to ever get married again, I chose to stay with him. He was 56 and had been married three times already when I met him. Plus, when I asked him once if he still loved his third wife, he replied that he’d ALWAYS love her.

I have hung in there for years – enjoying his companionship, vacations, and intimacy with him – hoping against hope that he’ll wake up one day and miraculously he’ll want to be married again because I’ll be the one he wants to be married to. We “date” each other exclusively and say “I Love You” to each other all the time, but it’s frustrating and lonely because it seems to be going nowhere.

And now, here I am eight years later (not getting any younger), and today, when I broached the subject of marriage with him, he told me that he COULDN’T IMAGINE spending his life with me. OUCH. This morning I took off the ring he gave me a couple years ago (a diamond ring – but NOT an engagement ring, mind you) and now I have to get back in the game. But how??? No internet or dating websites for me. HELP. ME. PLEASE. — Not Getting Any Younger

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