You Don’t Need to Settle!



No, The Universe Isn't Sending You Losers

By Mary R. Dittman, M.B.A.

Just because a man shows up, it doesn’t mean he’s “supposed to” be in your life.

One evening, I went to a basketball game at the university where I teach.  I had tried to get a couple of different girlfriends to go with me, but none were available.  So, I went by myself.

During the second half of the game, one of my friends came over and asked if I was dating anyone.  When I told him I wasn’t, he said he wanted to set me up with his brother.

Flash forward a couple of weeks, and I had a dinner date with the brother.  He was super-cute, had two kids, and seemed like a nice, stable guy.  We share the same faith, he’s funny, and in case I didn’t mention it: super-cute.  I really liked him.

I thought, wow - good thing I went to that basketball game alone. 

If I’d been with pals, my friend never would have approached me...

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How to Be Confident In Your Singleness


Maybe You're Super Successful at Avoiding Bad Relationships

By Mary R. Dittman, M.B.A.

I just can’t get it right. 

Ever thought that?  Ever looked at the relationships in your rearview mirror and recognized yourself as the common denominator. 

And if you’re the one who keeps having relationship failures, well….it’s easy to feel like YOU’RE the failure.

I’ve always wanted to be married, but I’m over 40 and I’ve never been married.  I’ve dated a lot, and I’ve been in love, but nothing that lasted. 

I used to see my string of broken relationships as proof that I was a failure at love.  While it’s true that I’m not the best person to tell you how to get a man to commit, I’m definitely an expert on what doesn’t work.

One of my readers commented once that she wasn’t sure I was “qualified” to give relationship advice - having never been married. 


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Is God Mad at Me?



Your Singleness ISN'T Divine Punishment!

By Mary R. Dittman, M.B.A.

I used to believe God was punishing me with singleness.  Or, at least, that I just hadn’t gotten good enough to “earn” a man.

If you grew up in church, you’ve probably heard of Psalm 37:4 - “Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.”

I took this to mean that if I didn’t have the desire of my heart (i.e., marriage and family), I must not be pleasing God. 

When you think God is mad at you, you’ll start jumping through hoops to be good enough.  And the major problem with this is that when you think God is mad at you, you cannot have peace.

I read one story about King David (who wrote Psalm 37) .  His heart’s desire was to build a new temple for God. 

But, God told David that He would not accept a temple built by David because there was too much blood on David’s hands. 

Unable to...

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5 Ways to Not Feel Like A Loser When You're Out Alone


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Even If Other People DO Talk About You

By Mary R. Dittman, M.B.A.


Do you hate doing things alone because you feel embarrassed?

You’re not alone.  On the front page of the Wall Street Journal on Tuesday, June 5, 2018, Ms. Claire Wixted was quoted as saying (about going to a movie alone), “Are [other moviegoers] judging me like some dateless freak?”

The article goes on to report that many solo moviegoers have learned they prefer going to the movies alone because they can sit where they want, eat what they want, and not have to listen to someone else’s chatter. 

Coincidentally, the same day Dear Abby had a question from a man whose wife talks through the movies, and he’s fed up with going to the theater with her!

I live in a small, Southern town.  One time, I told someone I had just returned from vacationing by myself in Cancun. 

Her reaction: I would NEVER do that! 

Her declaration really hurt - I...

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You Need to "Be Picky"


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But Only If You want a Good Relationship

By Mary R. Dittman, M.B.A.


If you’re single and you’re over 40, you’ve probably been asked if (or told that) you’re too picky.

Like, you shouldn’t have any standards.  After all, you’re over 40 - you need to be more accepting because nobody’s perfect.

I find it interesting that when you go to the grocery store, you examine the produce because you don’t want to pick the tomatoes that are squished, or the apples that are bruised, or the lemons that are mildewy. 

But, God forbid that you have standards for a relationship!

I was dating a guy and learned that he had been divorced 4 times and had declared personal bankruptcy twice.  I told one of my friends I was going to dump him, and her response was that I was too focused on money.

OK - broke in your 20’s, starting out with nothing and building something together is romantic. 


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Valentine’s Day Survival Guide


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The Single Girl’s Guide to Surviving Valentine’s Day

By Mary R. Dittman, M.B.A.


Here we go: another Valentine’s Day.  This article is straight-up written for my single girlfriends out there.  Ladies, these Do’s and Don’ts will help you survive Valentine’s Day (and maybe even enjoy it (gasp)!).

DO keep Valentine’s Day in perspective.  Remember: Valentine’s Day is basically a manufactured holiday designed to sell you things.  V-Day is a major revenue generator for card companies, florists, candy makers, restaurants, jewelers, and retailers who sell cards, flowers, candy, or jewelry. 

The fact that we are so dialed in to Valentine’s Day is a testament to the power of marketing (which I am fine with, as a trained and experienced marketing expert). 

In terms of our economy, I hope to see lots of Valentine’s Day gifts around me because spending will help us continue...

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3 Reasons Why You'll Never Be Good Enough for a Relationship


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And a Better Way to See Things

By Mary R. Dittman, M.B.A.


Have you ever wondered what was wrong with you that you were still single?

I spent a lot of years and money trying to figure out why I could never have a successful relationship. 

I would start therapy sessions with a new counselor with the instruction that we needed to determine what was wrong with me and fix it so I could get married.

I read every relationship book, listened to every dating podcast, tried every self-improvement hack.  I wondered if I was not thin enough, not pretty enough, not elusive enough, too elusive.

When I was 40, I considered that maybe something was just wrong with me - like the wiring in my brain must be deeply flawed.  So flawed that nobody could figure it out, but clearly there was something wrong with me that was the cause of my singleness. 

It wasn’t visible: I have a good figure, I keep myself up, I look way younger than my actual...

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Why He Left YOU For HER


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And How to Stop Obsessing About It

By Mary R. Dittman, M.B.A.


Have you even wondered why “he” chose “her”? 

This wondering may show up in two scenarios:

(a) you wonder why that man (guy you know, celebrity, athlete) chose the woman he’s with; or,

(b) you wonder why the man you wanted (or were with) chose someone else.

Let’s focus on Scenario B today: “your” guy chose her instead of you.

I was dating someone once, and right after we broke up, he started seeing someone who had a less-than-sterling reputation.

To the outsider, it’s clear that his interesting choice had nothing to do with me and everything to do with his own character.

But when you’re inside the scenario, it’s normal to wonder if there’s something wrong with you.

I think there are two issues here:

  1. He doesn’t want to be with you
  2. He does want to be with her

They may be correlated, but not...

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3 Things to Do When Your Friend Ditches You for a Guy


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That Don’t Involve Snarkiness or Social Media

By Mary R. Dittman, M.B.A.


“Men come and go, but your friends are forever.”  This is B.S.

I used to believe this.  Early on, I’d had the experience where I chose a man over my friends, and - as we all know - when the relationship ended, I had no gal pals to comfort or support me.

The older I’ve gotten, I’ve kept my girlfriends close and always made time for them. 

One of my friends and I had a standing Friday night “date.”  We’d go do a kickboxing workout, then get smoothies. 

I was dating someone very seriously, and whenever he’d ask for Friday night, I told him I had plans. 

In a year, I canceled on my friend 4 times because of out-of-town trips with him or some special event.

When she would latch on to a new guy, she’d ditch me and I wouldn’t hear from her for weeks. 

Once, when she was...

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Why There's Nobody Out There For You


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How to Save Yourself From the Terror of Singleness

by Mary R. Dittman, M.B.A.


Is there someone for everyone?

One of the popular sayings we hear as singles is, “There’s someone for everyone.” 

Another favorite: “Every pot has a lid.” 

If you’re in the Christian community, people will quote Psalm 37:4: “If you delight yourself in the Lord, He will give you the desires of your heart.” 

We wander through our singleness, wanting a relationship, always waiting for that one person who will “complete” us.  Thanks, Jerry Maguire.

What if there ISN’T someone for everyone?  What if your pot doesn’t have a lid? 

What if God never gives you the desires of your heart?

One of my girlfriends always wanted to be a wife and a mother.  She is a dutiful daughter, a respected nurse, and a beloved friend.  She nursed her father through his cancer, and has taken...

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