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The Dating Issue | Magazine

How Meredith Goldstein became an advice columnist when her own love life was falling apart

An exclusive excerpt from Love Letters columnist Meredith Goldstein’s new memoir, “Can’t Help Myself.”

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The red flags screamed at me

I assumed that because he was 40, he’d be a bigger man. How can I move on from this?

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Even after five years as part of a couple, I think of an old crush every day

Why can’t I get an old flirtation out of my mind?

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He sent his ex a Valentine’s Day text

She’s in a different country, so I know he isn’t physically cheating, but I found messages of him saying he “misses her.”

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Ignored after a breakup

He has completely ignored me and won’t let me in in the slightest way. Why has he chosen to ignore me in such a brash way?

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I have a thing for a stranger on Instagram. How do I meet him?

Based on his posts, I have a feeling we’re a match, but I don’t know how to get his attention.

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He removed her as his beneficiary

When I questioned why he would do that, he replied he was “mad at me.”

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Dating again, but comparing everyone to her

If I do pursue getting back together, how do you recommend reinitiating things and making it sustain?

A scene from Ana DuVernay’s film adaptation of Madeline L’Engle’s “A Wrinkle in Time.”

Things to Do

The Weekender: Wrinkles in time, tricks up sleeves, and ‘Pretty in Pink’ 

The Globe’s picks for the best ways to spend your weekend.

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He’s suspicious of my male friends

He always says “you can go hang out with your friends if you want to, but I don’t like it, and eventually it will probably be what ends us.”

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Is our open relationship too open?

I don’t know how to revisit this conversation to tell him that the idea of him hooking up with my friend makes me uncomfortable.

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I think my boyfriend still has a thing for his ex

I’ve stooped to snooping on his phone and computer, though it only seems to make things worse.

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Now that he’s graduated, we’re drifting apart

Lately, I’ve been feeling a weird vibe from him. My daily Snapchats and text messages from him have gotten few and far between, and I always have to be the one to request to Facetime.

Krystal and Arie Luyendyk Jr. in “The Bachelor.”

So why do we watch ‘The Bachelor’?

LA Times reporter and Massachusetts native Amy Kaufman’s new book tries to sort out her fascination — and ours.

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‘I can’t seem to date anyone decent’

All the men I’ve dated in the past year turn out to be addicted to sex, emotionally unavailable, gaslighty, or terrified of any level of commitment.

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She’s moving in, but what she really wants is marriage

Her divorced boyfriend never wants to get hitched again, but she hopes living together will change that.

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He likes to party with his female friend

For the first six months, he spoke about her all the time and said, “She’s like my sister — of course I’m going to talk about her.”

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Is he busy . . . or rude?

I understand how busy he is, and of course I’m busy as well, but I think the amount of time it takes him to answer my messages and make plans with me borders (I think) on rudeness.

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My siblings put my boyfriend through a ‘trial phase’

It’s usually really rough, and they can be very aggressive and rude about how they feel.

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Couple’s carefree lifestyle has gone to the dog

How do you get out of the mundane routine of everything? I feel like we’re an old couple at the age of 29 with kids (kids being our puppy).

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Help me, Taylor Swift: My ex won’t hear me when I say we aren’t getting back together

For fear of hurting him, I didn’t tell him I’m expecting a baby with my new boyfriend. Should I have?

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She questions staying with passive-aggressive boyfriend

“Fast forward to my birthday, and he ignored me. Not a word. He didn’t message me.”

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Was it casual sex ... or more?

I thought the whole situation would take less than an hour. That would have been perfectly nice, especially considering the place I am in my life right now.

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Grilled Cheese, Draco, and other chapters from the new Love Letters book

In celebration of Valentine’s Day, we’re revealing the chapter titles for “Can’t Help Myself: Lessons & Confessions from a Modern Advice Columnist,” the Love Letters book.

She hasn’t seen him in two months

I have had about 10 e-mails from him in that time period.

Colleen Hoover is among many writers to set a romance novel in Boston.

I love romance novels. Just not ones set in Boston

I’ve always hoped I could see my own city as a place for romance. With that in mind, I approached writers who’ve set stories here in the hopes that they can tell me how.

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‘I’m just not happy being married to her’

I feel like the most vile person on Earth because I’m hurting my wife so much with my desire to move on from our relationship.

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My old high school sweetheart has feelings for me, and her husband

She also says I’m being selfish because I want space and she doesn’t. What do I do?

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Should she break up with her boyfriend?

In explaining what did happen, I realized I do have feelings for my friend.

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Ready to date a friend

We’ve even earned nicknames from our friends because we’re always together. We did a joint costume for Halloween (it was really cute).

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‘She’s not sure if there’s a spark’

My question is: Why would she initiate the idea of giving dating a serious try and then so quickly become hesitant and want to simply be friends without even going on a date?

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Should she leave her boyfriend for a man she met on vacation?

He made me feel empowered and free; it’s not that I don’t feel those things with my actual boyfriend – I love him dearly – but it’s just different.

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Does he have to tell one woman about the other?

I chose to go back to Kelly, but I still talk to Danielle.

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We live together . . . but his family doesn’t know

He keeps saying it’s not the right time, but . . . when will it ever be the right time?

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Living with his ex, in love with someone new

Recently, I’ve met someone who is amazing, makes me feel wonderful, and truly cares about me in every way.

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My boyfriend broke up with me by text

Three months later, he’s had a change of heart. Can I trust him?

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We renovated the house — and then he broke up with me

I really love him, and the fact that he broke up with me after we had renovated the house together was even more painful.


After five years, he’s the same guy

“Back when I was 20 . . . I didn’t care that he didn’t really have any goals in life.”

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‘I’m going broke trying to keep us afloat’

The apartment is expensive and has put a financial strain on both of us. I have a better job than my partner so I pay more than half of the rent.

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He needs to have a backbone with his family

The issue is his family HATES me and the fact that we are together. They are extremely racist and will never accept me, my biracial children, or the age difference.

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We have a toddler and live with my partner’s parents. I’ve had enough

I pay the bills, he saves his money for a house. But we’re not getting anywhere.

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I’m the single friend — and I’m unhappy

“Over the past few years, I have started getting very sad after friends’ weddings, when they announce pregnancies, when their kids have birthdays, etc.”

love letters by meredith goldstein

No answers. No explanations. Just gone.

What should I do? No answers. No explanation. Just POOF! Gone.

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I think my fiance puts his family before me, and it’s a problem

She dropped everything when one of his parents was hospitalized. But she can’t get his attention now that one of hers is ill.

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Hooked up twice (in a year)

I really feel like he might be the one. The issue comes when I try to take it from this confusing middle ground to dating or exclusivity.

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This friend would like more benefits

“We just didn’t know about each other’s feelings, and only realized once it was too late.”

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What should I tell his ex-girlfriend?

He and I still have the exact same relationship: best friends with benefits, talking all day every day, etc. And he still hasn’t told her the truth.

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I ducked his kiss on our first date, and now he’s not returning my texts

He said it was a great first date, but won’t respond about a second one. Was it my aversion to smooching?

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‘I understand privacy is privacy, but. . .’

I share everything with him — I am 100 percent honest with him because of his previous trust issues.

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‘Should I give up trying’

We saw each other over Thanksgiving break and it felt so normal and right. We wanted to work on things, and he told me he loved me.