Dear Annie: I am a divorced male in my early 50s. I'm in good health, successful and single. I'm single by choice, due to the availability of single women my age without issues (for lack of a better word).
I do not take any medications, other than vitamins every morning. I weigh 195 pounds, which is healthy for my height. While I do not consider myself a "Shallow Hal," there is no attraction for me to overweight women. Your body is the vessel that takes you through this life. If you have no respect for that, then how can you properly manage everything else in life? Women my age also tend to get too clingy too quickly.
My children are now grown (and successful in their own right) and I find myself with more time on my hands. As I type this on a Saturday night, alone in my living room, I'm curious to hear your advice.
I will go a little further to include financials: I own a house with a small mortgage, a rental property and some property in Florida. I have money in the bank and investments. Why couldn't I want someone who, at the very least, is financially secure?
Lastly, I will digress to my earlier statement of no medications, I will admit to indulging on occasion to good wine, craft beer and even quality spirits, although not to excess. The use of over-the-counter medication is also on my watch list. I wouldn't want to criticize where it is necessary but I also feel there is an overuse of said medication. Have a glass of wine or even some marijuana, now that is more accepted and natural. I feel there is no need to introduce chemicals in pill form into your body.
So, Annie, my question to you: Am I asking for too much? I will admit to some faults but still feel I am stable enough. As I re-read this and edit as I feel necessary, I have doubts that you would even consider publishing this inquiry due to its nature. I would look forward to any response. — Bachelor
Dear Bachelor: My question to you: Why so defensive? I doubt anyone has told you that you couldn't "want someone who, at the very least, is financially secure." That's a reasonable expectation.
Lamenting your lack of dating options while at the same time disqualifying millions of women from your dating pool, however, is not so reasonable. That's exactly what you're doing by prejudging women your age (or older) as too "clingy" with too many "issues." And you disqualify millions more by refusing to date women who are overweight (an attribute you unfairly equate with some sort of moral failing).
Look, no one is telling you whom you can or can't date. I'm certainly not saying you can't be selective in choosing a partner. But you asked for my advice, so here it is: First, consider every woman as an individual, and second, be picky about the things that count — which are seldom skin-deep.
Dear Annie: I read the letter from Larry who was having problems with an irate neighbor over parking issues.
I, too, have neighbors who are generally wonderful people. It was the friends who visited them that caused problems. They would block half of my driveway. After my having to repeatedly report this and call officers to have vehicles moved, the neighbors put up a brick border wall marking their property boundary. We haven't had any issues since. Is it just arrogance or ignorance that causes people to do this? — Marilyn
Dear Marilyn: I can't diagnose the cause of such behavior, but if I had to guess, I'd say it's a severe case of chronic self-absorption.
"Ask Me Anything: A Year of Advice From Dear Annie" is out now! Annie Lane's debut book — featuring favorite columns on love, friendship, family and etiquette — is available as a paperback and e-book. Visit http://www.creatorspublishing.com for more information. Send your questions for Annie Lane to [email protected]