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Dear Prudence


Advice, commentary, and conversation from Mallory Ortberg, author of Slate's Dear Prudence column.

Advice, commentary, and conversation from Mallory Ortberg, author of Slate's Dear Prudence column.
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Advice, commentary, and conversation from Mallory Ortberg, author of Slate's Dear Prudence column.




Dear Prudence: The “Relentlessly Friendly Neighbor” Edition

Prudence is joined by Jolie Kerr, a cleaning expert, advice columnist and host of the podcast, Ask a Clean Person. We begin with a concerned letter-writer whose sister is involved with a reckless and dangerous partner on how she can remain supportive while advocate for her sister’s well being. Next, this reader just frankly doesn’t want to be friends with her eager neighbor but they’ve picked up on none of the “I don’t want to be friends” hints. And lastly, a husband of 35 years is feeling...


Dear Prudence: The “Not Your Mom” Edition

ITUNES SUMMARY: Prudence is joined by writer and self-appointed mom friend Jess Reynolds. First up, my ex and I “split the sheets” (tamer than you might think) after our career paths didn’t align, but I’m feeling drawn to him again even though I’m engaged to someone else - help! Next up, my husband expects me to do a ton of housework for his stepkids. I’m feeling underappreciated and he’s not doing his share. Can I just check into a hotel and let them sort it out? Help! Hear more Prudence...


Dear Prudence: The “Not Unconditional Love” Edition

Prudence is joined by hosts of the podcast By the Book: Kristen Meinzer and Jolenta Greenberg. First, how can I talk to my parents about feeling like I’m only acknowledged for academic achievements? Next, advice for an older sister unsure of how to help her brother who is demonstrating worrisome and creepy behavior. I’m keeping my baby, but friends don’t understand - what can I say? And lastly, I know instagram is all about putting your best self first, but I still want my own highlight...


Dear Prudence: The Live “Cruise-ship Romance” Edition

Our first live show! Prudence is joined onstage at the Brava Theater in San Francisco by writer and advice columnist Nicole Cliffe and lawyer and novelist Jasmine Guillory who read through letters and answer questions from the crowd. The team helps a writer trying to find out how a former partner died when their only connection is through facebook. A supportive sister wants to tell her brother she knows he’s gay, but wants to respective his privacy. I told my partner about my racist...


Dear Prudence: The “Tepidly Panromantic” Edition

This week, writer Rohin Guha tells us of the joys of leaving Twitter post Trump election. First, the Prudence team takes on gender discrimination at a so-called forward-thinking progressive company. “Tired Asexual” asks “how do I regain my ability to appreciative media that shoehorns romantic interludes as stand-ins for all important interpersonal dynamics?” And lastly, when bird-sitting for neighbors, how can I confront them about their racist artwork? Hear more Prudence by joining Slate...


Dear Prudence: The “Ongoing Fling with a Famous Person” Edition

Prudence is joined this week by Charlotte Shane, author, essayist, and co-founder of TigerBee Press. First up - what to say when your sister compares your desire to have a child with adopting a cat. And how can I respectfully deal with attending friends’ engagements and weddings when I am still single and not feeling the festive spirit? Then - an affair with a famous person (of course we guess) has been going on for years, but do I need to alter my expectations? And finally, my wife got a...


Dear Prudence: The “Reverse Kids Get Off My Lawn” Edition

This week we tackle the timeless question of how to eat from a jar of peanut butter in public when you don’t have a utensil. Then, farmer, educator, and food justice advocate Anna Luberoff joins to help with the mailbag. First, when dealing with overwhelming grief, how can I remain present at work and do I need to speak with my co-workers who may not always understand what I’m going through? And speaking of office politics, do I need to speak to a higher-up after attending my company...


Dear Prudence: The "Eternally Engaged" Edition

This week we’re revisiting some of the trickiest, thorniest questions of the past year. First up: I’ve been engaged for five years with no wedding in sight. Help! What do I say to strangers who tell me I’m “not dark enough” to be from my home country? I’m terrified of the doll my wife made our kid – can I say something? And finally: My husband gets furious when I talk about bodily functions at the dinner table – is he right? Hear more Prudence by joining Slate Plus:...


Dear Prudence: The "Personal ATM" Edition

This week we’re revisiting some of the trickiest, thorniest questions of the past year. First up: I keep lending my friend money and she never pays me back. Help! Then: I love my daughter-in-law, so why doesn’t my son want me talking to her? My employee technically isn’t doing anything wrong, except annoying everybody – what can I do? And finally: My boyfriend has refused to stock toilet paper since I bought him a bidet. Help! Hear more Prudence by joining Slate Plus:...


Dear Prudence: The "Selfish Sister" Edition

We’re kicking off this week with some listener feedback on good problem to have – adjusting to earning enough money for more than just the essentials of life! And then, professional trans lesbian Elizabeth Mills joins to respond to your letters! First up: My sister is asking for cash for Christmas, but I’m afraid I’d be enabling destructive habits. What’s the right gift? My fiance doesn’t want me to stay friends with someone I hooked up with once. Help! My ailing sister moved home after a...


Dear Prudence: The "Schrödinger's Stolen Cat" Edition

First up: An enthusiastic endorsement from Prudence for walking out of movies you don’t like! Then, academic and pop culture writer Anthony Oliveira joins to tackle your letters: How do I get my husband to stop using a body spray that makes me ill? My husband and I married young – should we open up our marriage to try new things? I adopted a lost cat as my own, but now I think I might’ve stolen it. And finally: My friends created a dumb nickname for my boyfriend and it stuck – how do I let...


Dear Prudence: The “Dirty Secret” Edition

Advice enthusiast and diversity consultant Valerie Aurora joins for a discussion of keeping your Christmas costumes away from Thanksgiving. Then onto your letters! First up: My best friends are growing closer and leaving me behind. Help! Should I tell my boyfriend I had an affair even though we’re breaking up anyway? I just found out that a former co-worker who assaulted me changed his name and became a doctor – should I report his violent behavior to his work? Hear more Prudence by...


Dear Prudence: The “Oh, Roger” Edition

Listener Rachel Tibbetts joins for a doozy of a batch of sibling and family related letters. First up: my sister is repeating the same mistakes as my homewrecker father and she expects my support. Help! My parents never gave me a dime growing up and now my siblings are throwing a fit that they helped me buy a house. My ex is getting married three weeks after our divorce – what do I tell our kids? Should I warn my brother’s fiancee about his violent past? And finally: is it fair to ask my...


Dear Prudence: The “Master of Disaster” Edition

Dear Prudence is back with her annual reminder: it’s okay to ruin the holidays! Then, advice columnist Anna Pulley joins to respond to your letters! First up: can an open marriage save my sexless one? I moved to a retirement community where 1970s-style sexism runs rampant. Help! I’m in a happy and healthy relationship with a man slightly younger than me – why is my family so convinced he’s using me? And finally: how do I tell my accident-prone friend I don’t want her to hold my baby?Hear...


Dear Prudence: The “Drama Tornado” Edition

Author Sarah Gailey joins Prudence to advise on matters of laundry, sisterhood, salary, and more! First up: what’s the protocol for abandoned clothes in a public dryer? Then: Should I tell my sister I think marrying her fiance is a mistake? My friends are icing me and I didn’t do anything wrong. Help! My therapist told another client – my dad – things I told her in a session. What do I do? And finally: how do negotiate for the salary I want in a final interview? Plus, hiring manager...


Dear Prudence: The “Wishin’ Boot” Edition

Prudence is back to tackle your letters! First up: I think my workplace is about to hire the terrible boss from my last job. Help! The love of my life left me for a friend of ours when I was pregnant with his child – am I supposed to try to co-parent with this woman? My new co-worker is giving off transphobic vibes – how can I open up her mind? Should I believe the stranger who told me my husband forced sex on her years ago? My marriage is dead, but I can’t bear the thought of divorce...


Dear Prudence: The “Friend of the Devil” Edition

Writer Rachael Herron joins Prudence to tackle a bundle of tricky letters! First up: Should I have said something to the men making sexist comments within earshot of my wife? My friend ignored my warnings about her terrible ex – now she says I abandoned her after their breakup. Help! How do I politely refuse donations from sources that my workplace is morally opposed to? How can I get my superiors to stop asking me for free work? Hear more Prudence by joining Slate Plus:...


Dear Prudence: The “Go Dutch” Edition

Writer and Bitch magazine co-founder Lisa Jervis joins Prudence to hash out how to be the best “mysterious widow” – and respond to your letters! First up: Should I tell an acquaintance her boyfriend is a known rapist? My sister’s fertility battle is making her step-daughter feel like she doesn’t count as a child. Help! I’m disappointed with my wedding photos – what can I do to solve this? My friend asks to “split” an entree every time it’s her turn to buy lunch. Help! My mom calls me...


Dear Prudence: The “Rich Girl” Edition

Dear Prudence and guest Mary Goss navigate your family and relationship quandaries. First up: Is it selfish to feel fear after surviving tragedy when other people had it way worse? How can I get my hearing family to accept me? My adoptive sibling doesn’t get along with my biological family – what do I do? My friend gave me her blessing to date her ex and now she’s bad-mouthing me online. Help! My brother-in-law married into money and won’t stop talking about his lavish lifestyle – should I...


Dear Prudence: The “On the Nose" Edition

In a spirit of excitement and terror, Prudie and Washington Post writer Amanda Erickson, jump into your letters. First up: I punched an emotionally abusive family member in the face – how do I make it up to her? How do I get my in-laws to stop calling my bi-racial children “little monkeys?” My mom is neglecting my kid sister – what do I do? My adult friend carries a doll with her everywhere and I’m worried about her. Help! Hear more Prudence by joining Slate Plus:...


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