DEAR HARRIETTE: I have been single for about 10 years, and I’m lonely. I have used some of those online sites to try to find companionship, and it hasn’t worked. Recently, I met a man online while on a business trip. He seemed nice enough, but it turns out all he wanted was a booty call. This was before I had even met him in person! I don’t want to give up yet, but I don’t know what to do. I work a lot, so I don’t have a whole lot of free time, but I am willing to make time to meet someone new. -- Lonely Girl, Seattle
DEAR LONELY GIRL: I have talked to too many women like you who wish for a partner but haven’t found one yet. As a long-time married woman, I have not been on the dating scene for years. When I ask friends and associates or read up on the issue, the tried-and-true advice is to make yourself go out to places and activities that you believe you will enjoy, and that men also attend. You have to put yourself out there and pay attention to notice who’s in your space. Be proactive and speak to people who seem interesting.
Be sure to give people a chance even if they may live outside your comfort zone. This could mean considering potential partners outside your race, socioeconomic background or geographic location. You have to think outside of the box and imagine the life you want to live with a partner, and then put yourself in situations where you are living that life. Then notice who else is living it, too. Being authentically you is essential so that you attract people who like the true you.