Single File - May 2023

Back in the Dating World & Do You Respect Your Man

"Single File" - May 2023 Issue
by Susan Deitz


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 bad out there? —From the "Single File" blog

Dear Reader:
The single world—like the married world—is made up of people of all shapes, sizes and colors and is home to every conceivable type of personality, morality and ethical code. You will discover, as you live your life as an unmarried woman, that the type of person you befriended as a wife and mother is pretty much the kind of person you attract (and are attracted to) as an unmarried woman. Your core values won't alter one whit.

As a professional, you have set high standards for yourself and your daughter. Rest easy; they will not be affected by a change in marital status. Quite the opposite, actually. The phase you are entering, an unmarried one, can turn out to be the most exhilarating time of your life, years of personal growth and discovery that can emerge only during an unmarried space. Take it from one who's made the journey and thrived, whose motherhood skills grew exponentially and who never was tempted to "hang out" with my son, Scott, or his friends. I grew into more of myself, surprised to be learning that aloneness is a far cry from loneliness. You'll learn to wrestle fear to the mat and be victorious. Your daughter will proudly model herself on a strong and fulfilled mother. God bless.


Dear Susan:
The propaganda that hurts us often comes from a small number of people, but when shared, it infects many. For most, it might not lead to hatred, 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 quickly shot down by other women and men. However, when men are put down by women, too many approve, and most males are afraid to speak up. Our society allows women to express their pain and their rage, whereas men are still taught to suffer in silence. —From the "Single File" blog

Dear Reader:
Funny thing about propaganda: The most virulent kind slips into our thinking virtually unnoticed, infecting our language silently, its power coming from repetition and mental numbness. And many times, the object of the discussion is the male. He happens to be the most misunderstood, maligned and mentally ridiculed specimen on the face of the earth. And for the most part, men suffer in silence. Women weep, moan, flail and broadcast their suffering; but men are expected to suck it up and be a man.

And currently, this new generation of 20-somethings is free to put down the man of the moment for no particular reason. I'm thinking of a 31-year-old unmarried woman who is efficient at her desk and good at handling business problems but whose expertise ends there. At a dinner last week, the conversation was heavily one-sided, she being more talkative than her date. But the air on his side of the table was heavy with guilt. His. The poor young man was constantly apologizing and explaining, over and over in so many ways, about one or another decision he had made that came back to bite him. She was relating stories about him, it seemed to be one a minute, in which he was always the wronged or ignorant one or the butt of some tasteless prank. For each one, he was trying to explain himself, but it was no good. She would have none of it. And I knew how she felt about him, that she was hoping he would be her husband. (Sigh.) This was not an evening that ended well. But the relationship itself? It ended. The next day. Moral: Think about your true feelings for a beloved, and make sure they include respect.

Have a question for Susan?
You can reach her directly at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Catapulted into single life as a young widow and single parent, Susan Deitz’s unusually deep understanding of her new world was about to be born, a course in undependence (her term for the wholeness needed for a full life) unlike any she had known at Smith College. Totally unprepared for life without a mate, her nights were battles with fear and the dreaded what-ifs. But when those tigers retreated, each new dawn found a more confident woman. On her own, living out her singleness, she was using her own judgment to make decisions for her little family—minor perhaps in the wider world but crucial for her small family. And they proved to be good ones. From those years of life lessons learned the hard way came a lifework and the world of Single File. Have a question for Susan? You can reach her directly at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. © 2023 CREATORS

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