Alma Gill
Alma Gill

By Alma Gill
NNPA Columnist

Single Dad Needs Help

Dear Alma,

I’m a single dad who recently relocated with my job. I’m raising my 11-year-old daughter alone. Her mom passed away 4 years ago. After my wife passed, I decided to focus on my daughter and do my best to raise her alone. I meet and date women but none of them seem to understand I am not interested in getting married. They all think my daughter needs a mother. I don’t have a problem with that, because I know that’s my decision to make. I’m aware there are some things she needs to learn from a woman, but my question is, are there any programs offered to girls to need support from women? Please don’t say the church, been there done that.

Raymond W.

Hi Raymond,

Please accept my sincerest condolences to you and your sweet daughter. I appreciate your emailing me. That warms my heart. I think this situation is much easier to resolve than you think. Yes indeed, there are some organizations you can explore for your daughter. Of course the Girl Scouts is what first comes to mind. May I suggest along with checking out various organizations, that you talk to her and find out what she’s interested in. Does she like to dance or play a sport? Once the two of you figure that out, get her involved. If she’s participating in something that she loves, she’ll make friends quickly and begin to open those doors of communication. Unlike boys, girls talk to each other about everything. Once she finds her favorite BFF, she’ll be fine.

Ok, I’ll stay away from mentioning the church as a resource, LOL.  I hear you without speaking a word about that one, LOL. You can also check out local sorority chapters. They usually offer mentoring sessions during the school year as well as summer programs. I participated in The Delta Teen Lift Program as a preteen; Google and see where they are in your area. It’s sponsored by Delta Theta Sorority, Inc.

Don’t worry Daddy, you’re on the right track.The unconditional love you have for your daughter is really all she’ll need. The love, support and guidance she receives from you will propel her to reach for the moon while she’s dancing with the stars.


Can’t Let Go of My Ex

Dear Alma,

I can’t seem to let go of my ex and it’s coming up on 10 years. I thought he and I were the perfect couple. I am a college graduate, a professional and I own my own home and car. I consider myself beautiful and I know I’ve got it going on. I have dates and we hang for a few weeks, but nothing ever evolves into a serious relationship. When I’m in between finding Mr. Right, I will call my ex and see how he’s doing. It seems so right when we talk. I can tell he wants to be with me by the sweet things that he says, but I know he’s intimidated by me. He compliments me and tells me what a wonderful woman I am, so I don’t understand why we aren’t together. I have not had a serious relationship since we broke up. How can I finally let go of my ex and move on with my life?


Dear J.M.,

Hmmm, let me think. How about you – let go of your ex and move on with your life. He isn’t interested in having a relationship with you. You can’t seem to understand that because you would have a relationship with you, wouldn’t you? Don’t get it twisted. When you’re starving for affection and come up with that never ending bright idea to give him a call, of course he spoon feeds you a sweet line to two, but that shouldn’t trigger a reserved seat at the “take-me-back” café. It is what it is, a line, a simple conversation. If you really want to move on, stop calling him.

You say you haven’t been able to have a long term relationship. Ok, let’s do some reevaluating.At some point you need to realize, it’s not about him and take a look within. Really, with all the respect I can toss in your awesome sauce, the question is: What’s your issue? Sometimes when searching for Mr. Right, we’ve focused on his list of requirements so firmly, that we fail at our own authentic list of who we truly are and what we have to offer. Nobody, including you, has everything going on. If you can handle it, do some soul searching and ask a true friend and family member for some constructive criticism. Ask them to tell you one thing they’d change about you. Listen and consider what they say.  There’s value and wisdom to be gained when we look to improve ourselves, not by a magazine’s standards, but whole heartedly from the inside out.


Alma Gill’s newsroom experience spans more than 25 years, including various roles at USA Today, Newsday and the Washington Post. Email questions to:  Follow her on Facebook at “Ask Alma” and twitter @almaaskalma.


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