Photo Credit: Jewish Press

Dear Mrs. Bluth,

At the outset, let me admit to something I have been denying for the longest time, I am afflicted with a great many fears of dating, getting married, having children, looking for and keeping a job, social events and so on. I have been to countless therapist, psychiatrists, faith healers, hypnotists and others who professed to holding the key to the cure, but none have helped in any large capacity to eradicate this obstruction to my life and ability to find peace and happiness. So, you are my last hope in this endeavor.


I had a fairly decent childhood, the fourth of seven children. I did not hate my parents, although they were not particularly demonstrative in their love and short on praise and encouragement. They did not tolerate disobedience of any kind but valued education and excellence of performance in school and if this was not displayed, there was no end of admonishment and belittling. I must interject here that I was not a particularly good student and often was held up as an example to my siblings who were merciless in their ridicule at my expense.

I did, however, by some freak of fate manage to become a writer of some note, writing under a nom de plume. My books surprisingly sell well, even though the underlying themes to all of them depict fear of failure, regret, sadness of every kind and end on a high note of fabricated happiness and success. No one who knows me would ever believe that I have achieved any modicum of success so I keep it hidden and to myself.

If it is of any help to you, I am a fifty-two-year-old male living in a secluded and gated community in another state and have very little contact with my family and the outside world. I write to you before totally resigning myself to a hermit’s life because there is something so personal and sincere in the way you respond to your readers’ issues that is both sincere and compassionate without being critical or harsh. I have been judged, labeled and critiqued enough in my life and hope that you can shed a tiny light of hope that may yet help me find a purpose to my existence.

Thank you for being there.


Dear Friend,

Thank you for sharing this sad and heartbreaking story of your life. Through your eyes, all seems hopeless and yet you task me with the ability to revive hope that you will yet find that elusive dream of happiness. So I will try, with the extreme desire to help you succeed and attain it, even where others far more capable than I have failed.

Your station of life as the middle child of seven has already predestine your credibility in the family unit. Most middle children are labeled in an unfair light, even by the best, most loving parents, consciously or unconsciously, and this forms the platform on how this child builds his or her life. Yours was built on almost no foundation at all, having been denied the very things with which a child can and should succeed to shape a successful, fulfilling and productive life.

Your life was built on a flimsy and shallow foundation on fear of failure, low self-esteem, low expectations and ridicule. This shines through every line of your letter. The fact that you have succeeded in a lucrative journalistic endeavor of authoring well received books does little to negate the strongly implanted and supported mind frame that you are a failure and that this success was probably an accidental talent well beyond your worth. The very floor boards of your foundation and the pictorial overview implanted in you by so many years of ingrained low expectations in your childhood and then carried on by yourself into your adulthood could very well have been the cause as to why so many professionals have been unable to help you help yourself. You carry this heavy mantle of failure and worthlessness that has barred anyone from reaching you.

Please understand that you have propagated all the negative and destructive views of your childhood onto your adult life, amplified them and nurtured them to deprive you of any chance of happiness. Your fears about your self-worth and your value to society are crippling any chance for implanting the seeds of self-worth and the entitlement to everything a person should have in his or her life. The Creator created each of us as an original work of art, there is no other like you, me or anyone else. Each of us is special, gifted in particular ways and very much has a place in this life. That means you as well!

Stop blocking out the positive aspects the therapist is trying to implant in place of all your hard earned negativity. Work with the very people who are trying to help you erase the blurred picture you have of yourself and assist you in finding the real you that has never had a chance to emerge. Please, I implore you, don’t give up on yourself, there is still so much life left to live and you have to get on that train post haste! I have enclosed a private phone number whereby you can reach me should you need some more of my special brand of enlightenment and we can look into getting you to someone who will be just the right fit to finding your path to happiness.


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