No, Sir – F*@% You

DEAR CHARLOTTE: So an interesting thing happened recently and I can’t stop thinking about it…

I was waiting behind another car who was paying to exit the parking lot. The parking lot driveway lets out onto a cul-de-sac, from which other driveways connect to other parking areas.

As I was waiting, I noticed two cars in the cul-de-sac in front of us. After slowing down the front car stopped and decided to reverse, causing the second car to honk.

But then the driver paying in front of me leans out and flips me off! He finished and drove out of the parking lot only to do a U-turn to re-enter and he flips me off again!?

I keep replaying the incident in my head… He flipped me off twice and I didn’t even do anything wrong. What should I have done?! – DUMBFOUNDED DRIVER

DEAR DUMBFOUNDED DRIVER: Boy, isn’t life funny? You were just sitting there minding your own business and all of a sudden you’re the biggest s*#t in that driver’s mind… twice. So rude! Well, don’t feel bad for yourself – feel bad for the other driver.

There are several reasons why:

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Addicted to Life

DEAR CHARLOTTE: I am a thirtysomething woman with no acknowledged addictions or vices. I am of average weight and build and am in generally good physical condition. My mental health, though never professionally evaluated, is, if not normal, at a level that allows me to function adequately in normal society. However, recently, I’ve been exhibiting symptoms of withdrawal, such as anxiety, restlessness, poor concentration, sweating, muscle tension, etc.

These symptoms started suddenly, after binge-reading a blog that I had fallen behind on. This very funny and engaging blog is about a woman going through her mid-thirties, and earlier this week, I read all the posts in about two sittings on public transportation. There have been no new posts since, and I began experiencing my symptoms yesterday. What is happening to me? Is it possible to experience withdrawal after a binge, and not just from ending an addiction? What should I do to calm my symptoms? Please help. – ADDICTED TO LIFE

DEAR ADDICTED TO LIFE: First off, I am so glad you reached out to me. I know a thing or two about withdrawal – from sugar and flour, from caffeine, from “The Crown” – and yes, you can experience withdrawal after a binge. It’s worth noting that you may have been predisposed to such symptoms, being exceptionally fond of this woman and her blog, but you are normal and there is nothing to fear.

I have reached out to my good friend, the woman behind the amazingly funny and popular blog, “Tastes Like Onion,” and she shared the following with me. I hope it brings you comfort, eases your long-standing pain, and gives you hope for the future:

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Somebody To Love


DEAR CHARLOTTE: I have been a loyal reader for some time and I am normally so excited to read your amusing words of wisdom.  However, I was disappointed when I read your “Tales of An Eighth Grade Nothing.” You were posed a question from a reader who is obviously enamored with someone and seeking advice, but rather than be supportive or helpful, your harsh advice basically suggested that she was potentially so hideous that it was not worth continuing her crush.

Your reader, 30-Something Going on 13, sounded sweet albeit childish, but when it comes to matters of the heart – aren’t we all 13 inside?  And therein lies the fun, and heartache, of having a crush.  Every look brings joy and/or despair, and every spoken word a code for unknown feelings.  And yet, the fact that your reader reached out to you tells me that she knew that her feelings were beyond her control, and her imagination potentially running away from her…

I know it’s not easy to like someone and not know if they like me back.  But what I would hope and sincerely ask of you, is for some different advice on what to do with those feelings.  Telling me that I could be delusional is not helpful.  I think you owe me, and your reader some kindness.  After all, aren’t we all looking for somebody to love, and to be loved in return? –QUEEN OF HEARTS

DEAR QUEEN OF HEARTS:  Thank you for your courage in writing to me from the heart.  I am ashamed to say that I took a reader’s struggle and not only made light of it, but turned on her personally in an attempt to thwart her runaway feelings for a few laughs.  For that, and any pain I may have caused to any of my readers, I am truly sorry.

As you very wisely pointed out, Queen of Hearts, knowing that you care for someone and not knowing if they feel the same can be a very painful situation.  How can we tell if the other person sees us for who we are?  Likes us just as we are?…  Beyond all that, I sense a deeper question: Am I a lovable person, worthy of love?

As an improved service to you and others in the same predicament, here are three suggestions to help cope:

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Tales of an Eighth Grade Nothing


DEAR CHARLOTTE: I met a guy a few months ago, and now every time I see him, we eventually make eye contact, and sometimes he even smiles at me. I’ve consulted my Magic 8 Ball but it keeps changing its mind. And our interactions are limited so I don’t have much else to go on. I need your help. Do you think he likes me likes me? –30-SOMETHING GOING ON 13

DEAR 30-SOMETHING GOING ON 13: I am so glad you reached out to me. Thinking about a question like this, especially in the emotional state of an eighth-grader, can drive you bananas as you consider multiple possibilities and secretly hope he just wants to be your husband and have a million babies.

But as a service to you and other people who obsess of such things, I hope it’s helpful to share three valid possibilities you may or may not have already considered:

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Can’t Find Me Love

Online Dating Ad

DEAR CHARLOTTE: I’ve been on a mission to start online dating to ‘get myself out there’ and start meeting new people.  But, after creating a profile and checking regularly in the first week, it’s now been months and I can’t seem to make myself go back online, at least regularly…  Now my current online dating subscription is about to expire.  I want to start dating again, but I’m not sure if online is right for me.  Should I renew my membership and keep trying, even though it feels futile? – LOOKING BUT NOT LOOKING FOR LOVE

DEAR LOOKING BUT NOT LOOKING FOR LOVE:  First off, I should congratulate you.  It’s not easy to get yourself out there, as you put it, and signing up for an online dating service is a good step to meeting new people.

But, it sounds like you’re unsure whether online dating is right for you, so here are some questions you should ask yourself in deciding:

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