Monthly Q + A

Sex, jealousy, and dwindling friendships

The inspiration for this advice column, brought to you by E. Jean Carroll — former advice columnist for Elle Magazine, and longest running advice columnist in the history of advice columns.


Good day loyal subscribers!

It’s Daylight Savings Day which means it will start getting dark around…3:45 pm? Can someone explain to me the reasoning for this? VERY annoyed. It will be nice to roll over and see the sun instead of a dark abyss in the mornings, though.

Anyways.

Here is the first Monthly Q + A advice column that I have decided to loop you free subscribers in on so you could get a taste.

Here are 3 questions I took from advice-giving archives, along with my feedback.

  • Where did my zest for sex go?

  • Why does my sister-in-law hate me?

  • Why can’t my friend be happy for me?

Where did my zest for sex go?

“I’m 34, married with 2 kids, and have no desire to have sex with my husband. I feel like this came out of nowhere. I’m happy with my life and even more so with him, so I am dumbfounded. What is happening? Where did my zest for sex go?”

Dear Zest,

One, it’s normal for sex drives to ebb and flow. So many factors play into getting us in the mood. From hormones and body confidence to stress and even the weather, it can be difficult to pinpoint why we aren’t as frisky as we once were.

Here is what I do know. Sex is so much more emotional for women than it is for men. It just is. I’ll never forget this tidbit of advice from my girlfriend’s therapist:

“Men are like microwaves, and women are like crockpots.”

Translation? Guys can turn it on pretty much anytime, anywhere. It’s more physical for them. Women often need to be emotionally stimulated for hours or even days before wanting to be touched.

If you’re worried, I would call your doctor. It could be a simple fix of lowering your stress level, or it could be something else. Just ask! And, know that this is most likely temporary. Also, little things (like lighting a candle or wearing silk) go a long way in revving yourself up. Good luck.

Why does my sister-in-law hate me?

“Every time my husband and I visit my sister-in-law and her husband, she talks over me or flat out ignores me. What is going on? I’ve really been making an effort these last few months of getting to know her (really to make our hangouts bearable instead of miserable), but I feel trapped when the 4 of us are together. What do I do?”

Dear Trapped,

When you say you have been “making an effort,” it could be coming across as in-genuine, as we shouldn’t have to make an effort to simply chat with someone — conversation should just flow. I myself have a few people in mind where talking to them is like pulling teeth, and I want to pull my hair (and theirs) out because of it.

That said, she isn’t going away and neither are the holidays where you will have to interact with her. Try asking her about something she loves talking about — find this out through your husband or hers. People love talking about themselves and their interests, always.

And keep in mind, when certain people don’t open up to you or are flat out rude to your face, it has so much more to do with them than it does with you. Insecurity and jealousy are the culprits of so many misunderstandings, especially when it comes to 2 women.

You may be surprised to find she feels intimidated by you, or simply isn’t comfortable in her own skin. Or maybe she is one of those women that gets along better with men. Try not to take it personally.

In the meantime, talk about what she wants to talk about, and see if things change. Kindness fares better than resentment.

Why can’t my friend be happy for me?

“I had my first baby 6 months ago. I love her to death, I love being a mommy, and I love how much closer my husband and I are now that we are a family. What I don’t love is my single friend’s condescending remarks about my new — what she refers to as — “my boring suburb life.” It hurts me! How can I tell her this bothers me without making her feel bad? I know it’s coming from a place of hurt herself, as she wants a family of her own and is fed up with the dating game.”

Dear Suburb Wife,

I’m happy to hear you are enjoying your time as a new mom.

The cold hard truth of becoming a mother (and wife) is that your single friends may not “get it.” Meaning, they may start to feel like more of an acquaintance than your best friend, especially if said best friend isn’t supportive of your new life — and it is a brand new life you are embarking on.

You may need to do some reevaluating of this friendship. This isn’t just the case for motherhood, but adulthood in general. With so many changes (moves, jobs, marriage, kids, divorce, evolving interests/viewpoints), we really shouldn’t be all that surprised that our friendships change and evolve along with us.

Tell Miss Fed Up With The Dating Game that while your days of dancing on tables with her may be over, your bond is not. See how she reacts.

One of two things will happen — (1) She will feel remorseful and things will go back to normal for your friendship. (2) Your friendship may be put on pause (or end completely) because she can’t get past her own unhappiness, as seeing you happy with a life that she wants is too much to bear.

No matter which way it goes, your life will go on, and so will hers. Timing is everything in situations like these. Keep people around who celebrate and support you!

That’s all for the (first!) Monthly Q + A column. What did you think of it? Too long? Too short? Fabulous questions? Terrible answers? Do let me know!

The point of this is to be entertaining. I am not a licensed psychologist or psychotherapist. What I am is someone who gives it to you straight. Life isn’t black and white, and all advice is subjective. But I do hope it helps!

Thank you for reading, and I hope you enjoyed this first column.


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Be you.

XOXO,

Ashley

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