DEAR SUSAN: Most angry and bitter single people are that way because they are trying to date "up" instead of looking for someone who has more in common with them financially and in terms of appearance and fitness. Think about it. As for the guy who's steamed because women only care about a man's paycheck, give me a break. As if a lawyer wants to date a Wal-Mart greeter! Male or female, we tend to go for people who have things in common with us -- ambition, hygiene, looks, friends, intellect, etc. Why is that so hard to get? From the Single File blog

DEAR BLOGGER: For one thing, because it's only human to smooth over our own rough spots, self-deception that in the short term keeps us feeling comfortable about ourselves -- and well prepared for the rigors of dating. But masks have a way of slipping with time, and the outcome isn't pretty: romance on the rocks. But the person unmasked is left with a shaky self-image, worse than dashed hopes. Relive that scenario a few times and the (un)masked marvel slides into disillusion that hardens into anger and bitterness, not exactly a winning formula for the real thing. Lesson learned? To thine own self be true, and you cannot then be false to anyone. Masks are only for Halloween night.

DEAR SUSAN: Which method of finding a monogamous relationship, the intimate or multiple, is correct? As for me, I thoroughly enjoy sex and also would love to be in a monogamous relationship. We learn our core beliefs about morals, values and sex in childhood, but I am wondering whether one can change them as an adult without hurting oneself or others. I'm not afraid of the water, because I took swimming lessons; but when it comes to sex, I evidently didn't learn all the right lessons. And I don't think I'm in this boat alone. From the Single File blog

DEAR BLOGGER: You and I can share thoughts about sexuality; I have my opinions and a feeling for the unmarried mentality -- but the issue is highly personal, and I know better than to offer dogma. But being an adviser to the unmarried allows me a privileged glimpse into their sex lives, and I know the sorrow and regrets of being a casual sex casualty. (Even when sex is meant to be casual, one partner is silently yearning for more.) The truth is that most of us have a personal comfort zone in our sex lives, and it is conservative. My opinion? Most of us are wired for monogamy. If you'd like to share more, write for my Sexual Bill of Rights. It's free, on parchment, suitable for framing or the fridge door.