Dear Sugars

100 EpisodesProduced by WBUR and The New York Times

Radically empathic advice

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Episodes We Love: Dear Dad, It's Over

May 17th, 2019

40:22

We can't choose our parents, but we can choose whether or not to have a relationship with them. This week, the Sugars discuss parental estrangement with the help of Stephen Elliott -- founding editor of The Rumpus and …

Episodes We Love: Career Vs. Love

May 10th, 2019

33:59

You love your partner, you love your career... but they're pulling you in different directions. What do you do? The Sugars have help from …

Episodes We Love: Inbox Outliers

May 3rd, 2019

39:42

Infidelity. In-Laws. Friendship. These are just a few of the categories that help keep the Dear Sugar inbox organized. But every once in a while, we get a letter that doesn't fit neatly into any category. This week, …

Episodes We Love: Baby Or Bust

April 26th, 2019

35:20

You wants kids; your partner doesn't. Or your partner wants kids, and you don't. Whatever the scenario, few subjects are as emotionally charged and potentially deal-breaking in a relationship as a disagreement over the …

Dear Sugars Presents: Kind World

April 22nd, 2019

11:33

Dear Sugars wants to tell you about another great show: Kind World. Subscribe today!

https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/kind-world/id963244879

Episodes We Love: Pet Dilemmas

April 19th, 2019

46:34

This week, adventures in animal ownership! The Sugars, along with Julie Barton -- author of the memoir "Dog Medicine: How My Dog Saved Me From …

Episodes We Love: Body Weight And Romance

April 12th, 2019

34:22

It’s never easy to talk to our romantic partners about their bodies, especially when it’s about weight. The Sugars, along with the writer Ashley C. Ford, answer letters from people questioning their relationships …

Episodes We Love: Should I Intervene?

April 5th, 2019

41:00

When we decide to meddle, it can often backfire. The Sugars, along with the writer Meghan Daum, answer letters from people who see loved ones heading down the wrong path, but worry intervention might be the wrong move. …

Episodes We Love: Haunted By Ghosting

March 29th, 2019

37:02

The term "ghosting" may be relatively new, but the concept -- someone suddenly and inexplicably disappearing from your life -- is not. In the past, a total halt to communication with a friend might leave you feeling …

Episodes We Love: Location, Location, Location

March 22nd, 2019

36:04

Location, location, location. It makes all the difference in real estate, and it can make all the difference to one's happiness. But finding a place that really feels like home can be tricky. This episode was …

Episodes We Love: Sexual Fluidity

March 18th, 2019

42:35

"Whatever" -- that's how the actress Maria Bello describes her sexual orientation. Her "love who you love" attitude toward sexuality, regardless of gender, is often referred to as fluidity. Maria joins the Sugars this …

Episodes We Love: Happy Two Years Of Sugar, Part 2

March 8th, 2019

37:43

It's part 2 of "the year in Sugar," where Steve and Cheryl reflect on some of the most memorable letters and episodes of 2016. This episode was originally published on February 9th, 2017.

Episodes We Love: Happy Two Years Of Sugar, Part 1

March 1st, 2019

46:48

The Sugars look back on some of the most memorable letters and episodes of 2016. There are so many that they'll be doing this in two parts. This episode was originally released on January 27th, 2017.

Episodes We Love: The Writers Resist, Part 2

February 22nd, 2019

29:34

Part two of Dear Sugar Radio: The Writers Resist at The Aladdin Theater in Portland, Oregon. This episode was originally released on January 27th, 2017.

Dear Sugars Presents: Dear Hank and John

February 19th, 2019

45:19

Dear Sugars wants to tell you about another great advice show: Dear Hank & John.

Episodes We Love: The Writers Resist, Part 1

February 15th, 2019

37:14

On November 9th, 2016 -- the day after Donald Trump became America's President-elect -- the Dear Sugar inbox was flooded with emails asking some version of the question, "How do we move forward as a nation from here?" …

Episodes We Love: Love In Doubt

February 8th, 2019

41:55

How many times have you heard this: "I love him, we're great together, but..."? There's always room for doubt, even in the happiest of relationships. So this week, the Sugars take on some of those doubts in rapid-fire …

Episodes We Love: The Dark Side Of Porn

February 1st, 2019

39:14

The Sugars continue their series on porn with a letter from a woman whose fiancé is "addicted" to porn. This episode was originally released on December 16th, 2016.

Dear Sugars Presents: Endless Thread

January 28th, 2019

31:50

From our partners at WBUR, Endless Thread is a podcast featuring amazing stories found on Reddit. In this story, they talk to a happily married couple who has recently decided to experiment with consensual …

Episodes We Love: Is Porn Wrong?

January 25th, 2019

35:27

Pornography is more abundant and accessible than ever before. So it probably isn't surprising that it appears to be having a greater impact on romantic relationships. Part one of a two-part series focuses on some basic …

Episodes We Love: What About The Stepchildren?

January 18th, 2019

40:03

When the Sugars answered a letter from a woman who felt trapped in the role of "wicked stepmother," dozens of listeners wrote in asking the same …

Episodes We Love: When Your Loved Ones Just Don't 'Get It'

January 11th, 2019

31:54

Our loved ones are the people who are supposed to understand us. But what if they just...can't? Where do we turn then, and how do we fight the feelings of resentment that this lack of understanding can stir up? This …

Episodes We Love: Friendships, Part 2

January 7th, 2019

31:49

The Sugars have another conversation on friendship, this time with a handful of letters concerning male-female friendships. Is there such a thing as …

Introducing Safe for Work

December 19th, 2018

3:25

Safe For Work is an advice show that reminds you that while your office may be crazy, you don’t have to be. Office MVPs and corporate veterans Liz …

Episodes We Love: The Price Of Our Dreams

December 8th, 2018

34:42

The Sugars, along with fiction writer George Saunders, field letters from people who are chasing their creative dreams but frightened by the practical and financial risks that come with that pursuit. This episode was …

Episodes We Love: Rapid Fire Letters

December 1st, 2018

32:42

In a heated moment, a mother reveals a dark chapter from her childhood to her daughter, then immediately regrets it. What now? In this week’s episode, the Sugars tackle this and several other questions, including how …

Episodes We Love: The Power Of No, Part 2

November 17th, 2018

25:09

"What do I want?" This is the question Oprah Winfrey finally asked herself, after years of struggling to say "no" to people in her life. In the second of this two-part series, the Sugars continue their conversation …

Episodes We Love: The Power Of No, Part 1

November 10th, 2018

35:05

There’s incredible power in saying “yes.” It opens up avenues and allows us to be brave. In Cheryl's case, it’s what led to her becoming Sugar. But saying yes to life's opportunities can also have its risks. The Sugars …

Episodes We Love: Friendship, Part 1

November 3rd, 2018

41:19

Everyone has had a friendship quandary of some sort in the past, right? This week, the Sugars take on frequently asked questions in "rapid fire" fashion – from hating your best friend's significant other, to hating her …

Episodes We Love: May-December Romances

October 27th, 2018

30:40

Age is just a number in many contexts, but when it comes to finding long-lasting love, an age gap between partners can greatly impact the course of the relationship — both in positive and challenging ways. The Sugars …

Episodes We Love: I Divorced My Spouse, And My Child Divorced Me

October 20th, 2018

30:46

Divorce is always a painful process, but it's especially so when there are children in the middle. This week, the Sugars discuss situations of …

Episodes We Love: Make The Call

October 13th, 2018

39:29

The Sugars bring you another "rapid fire" episode, where they give brief answers to a handful of letters. This time, they challenge each other to …

Episodes We Love: How Do I Find The Courage To Be My Own Guide?

September 29th, 2018

26:37

The Sugars often discuss letters dealing with very specific problems or struggles. This week, they take on a broader, more existential question -- …

Episodes We Love: I'm A Transgender Man, Seeking Acceptance

September 22nd, 2018

38:01

The Sugars read the letters of two transgender men who are struggling to find love and acceptance. They discuss with Cooper Lee Bombardier, a visual artist, writer and transgender man.

Dear Sugars Presents: Last Seen

September 18th, 2018

36:22

From our partners at WBUR, a new podcast that looks into the greatest unsolved art heist in history: the theft of half a billion dollars worth of …

Episodes We Love: Can A Sexual Assault Survivor Love A Rapist?

September 15th, 2018

29:27

The Sugars discuss a letter from a survivor of sexual assault who has just been told by her long-time partner that he raped someone when he was in …

The Long Goodbye

September 1st, 2018

1:13:57

After four years of ministering to the lost, lonely and heartsick, the Sugars say farewell on this final episode of the podcast. We take a look back …

Moving On, Part 2 — With Dr. Harriet Lerner

August 25th, 2018

43:17

In this second part of our series on moving on, the Sugars discuss how we can release ourselves from our past mistakes. Dr. Harriet Lerner drops in to answer a letter from a woman who calls herself a "serial …

Moving On, Part 1 — With Claire Bidwell Smith

August 8th, 2018

46:45

As our final season draws to a close, the Sugars have been thinking about what it means to say goodbye and let go. In this first episode of our two-part series on moving on, the Sugars and Claire Bidwell Smith answer …

Talking About Privilege — With Catrice M. Jackson

August 11th, 2018

51:33

Privilege comes in many forms: socio-economic privilege, gender privilege, heterosexual privilege, to name a few. In this episode, the Sugars reply to two letter writers who are facing different forms of privilege. …

Emotional Abuse — With Reema Zaman

August 4th, 2018

47:57

He removed her makeup when he thought she was wearing too much. He refused to put her name on the leases for their car and their house. He told her …

Dear Sugars Live: The Great Reckoning

July 28th, 2018

51:32

Dear Sugars returns to Portland, Oregon, for another epic live show. Special guests Mitchell S. Jackson and Rebecca Skloot share the stage with the Sugars to tell stories of personal reckoning, and to answer letters …

Rapid Fire: Love & Money

July 21st, 2018

44:20

When it comes to love, money is supposed to be no object. But there’s no disentangling love from anything in our lives, and income is no exception. …

Young & Isolated — With Shirley Manson

July 14th, 2018

44:29

Feeling like an outsider is one of the hallmarks of adolescence. But in today’s episode, we hear from two 16-year-olds who have cause to feel …

Who's Your Daddy? — With Steve Lickteig

June 16th, 2018

40:37

When Steve Lickteig turned 18, he learned that his mother and father, who he thought were his adoptive parents, are in fact his biological …

Trust Your Body — With Hilary Kinavey & Dana Sturtevant

June 9th, 2018

41:51

“It’s only when my pants are nearly impossible to button that I force myself to lose weight,” writes the letter-writer who calls herself Body Negative. “And then the pattern starts all over again.” Hilary Kinavey, …

Rapid Fire: There's Just One Thing

May 26th, 2018

40:42

In this "rapid fire" episode, the Sugars read letters from four women who each have one not-so-tiny reservation about the men they’re dating. A black woman is dating a white man who is unwilling to talk about race …

Sex & Aging — With Dr. Pepper Schwartz

May 19th, 2018

36:31

The erotic lives of senior citizens are typically made invisible by our culture, which can lead to confusion and misinformation. Dr. Pepper …

Rage Is A Red Lesson

May 12th, 2018

40:35

Shortly after the birth of her first child, a letter-writer who calls herself “Tantrum Daughter” lost her mother to suicide. Now, with a second child on the way, Tantrum Daughter is overcome with pain and anger. After …

Emotional Labor: The Invisible Work (Most) Women Do

May 5th, 2018

44:08

Remembering the grocery list, coordinating with the babysitter, making food for the potluck, scheduling a get-together with the in-laws: These are …

The Stepchild's Dilemma — With Theo Pauline Nestor

April 28th, 2018

45:19

Whether you’re 5, 15, or 50 years old, it can be difficult to usher a stepparent in and out of the family unit. In today’s episode, the Sugars …

I'm In Love With My Abuser — With Esta Soler

April 21st, 2018

26:17

For the first time on the podcast, the Sugars answer a voice mail message from the Dear Sugars hotline. The message comes from a woman who reunited …

Buyer's Remorse — With Buzz Bissinger

April 14th, 2018

23:59

Buzz Bissinger owns more than 100 pairs of leather pants and over 200 pairs of leather gloves, having spent more than $600,000 on leather goods in the span of three years. Mr. Bissinger has a spending addiction, but …

Dear Sugars Live: A Night Of Bad Stories

April 7th, 2018

41:28

Dear Sugars returns to Portland, Oregon, for another raucous and uplifting live show. The Sugars get a surprising update from a letter writer from their past; discuss a new letter with a special guest, Omar El Akkad; …

Rapid Fire: Lovers & Friends

March 31st, 2018

42:34

In this rapid-fire episode, the Sugars weigh in on jealousy -- when is it justified, and how can it be confronted or neutralized?

Consent, Part 3: Working In The Gray

March 24th, 2018

40:46

In the final episode in our series on sexual consent, the Sugars discuss what happens when non-consensual sexual attention moves from the private to the public realm.

Consent, Part 2: Stuck In The Gray

March 17th, 2018

32:59

In the second episode in our series on sexual consent, the Sugars dive deeper into encounters that are neither clearly consensual nor non-consensual.

Consent Part 1: Into The Gray — With Jaclyn Friedman

March 10th, 2018

39:17

In the midst of the #MeToo Movement, women and men all over the country are re-examining sexual encounters from their past. Over the course of a three-part series on consent, the Sugars answer letters from some of …

Family By Proxy — With Jessie Glenn

February 10th, 2018

33:48

When a family experiences loss, familial roles are often redefined. In this episode, the Sugars answer letters from people who are unexpectedly …

Updates Part 2: Step Into Your Spotlight

February 4th, 2018

36:42

In part two of our updates series, we find out what happened to two letter writers who let self-image sabotage their love lives. The Sugars find out if “Scared to Choose Wrong” married her fiancé, and they give …

Updates Part 1: Change Is A Work In Progress

January 27th, 2018

35:18

In today’s update episode, we check in with some of our most memorable letter writers from previous episodes. The Sugars find out if “Struggling” was kicked out of his mother’s house, and they give “Bad Mom” a call to …

Dark Fantasies Part 2 — With Dr. Ian Kerner

January 20th, 2018

28:57

In part two of our Dark Fantasies series, Dr. Ian Kerner returns to help the Sugars answer questions about where our central ideas about sex and eroticism come from, and delve deeper into the world of sexual fantasy.

Dark Fantasies, Part 1 — With Dr. Ian Kerner

January 13th, 2018

32:22

Orgies. Sex in public. Incest. These are the things that some of us think about in the dark. Taboo fantasies can be exciting, but they can also be the source of our deepest shame. In this two-part series on sexual …

Cutting The Financial Cord — With Dr. Kate Gale

December 23rd, 2017

30:23

At age 18, we are granted the rights and responsibilities of adulthood in the eyes of the law. But for parents of young adults, it’s not so clear …

The Ugly Truth

December 16th, 2017

34:48

Most of us have days when we don’t feel attractive. But in this episode, the Sugars read letters from people whose faces are at odds with conventional ideas of beauty. The writer Ariel Henley joins the Sugars to talk …

Just Say It

December 9th, 2017

28:30

Words can be wielded like weapons. On today’s episode, the Sugars hear from people who have something to confess but are afraid to hurt others with the power of their words.

A Spy In The House Of Love — With Ariel Levy

December 2nd, 2017

33:13

Snooping on your spouse is generally ill-advised, but what if he or she has an addiction and is constantly lying about it? The Sugars and writer Ariel Levy answer this question on today’s episode.

The Double Bind of Female Ambition — With Hillary Clinton

November 18th, 2017

23:12

The Sugars are joined by Hillary Clinton to answer a letter about female ambition.

The Empty Chair: Part 2 — With Emily Rapp Black

November 11th, 2017

33:21

The Sugars conclude a two-part series on early childhood death. In Part 2, they read letters from parents who worry that their grief may overshadow their surviving children. They are joined by the writer Emily Rapp …

The Empty Chair: Part 1 — With Jessica Handler

November 4th, 2017

33:32

The Sugars begin a two-part series on early childhood death. In Part 1, they read letters from siblings who live in the the shadow of their parents’ grief. They're joined by the writer Jessica Handler, whose two …

The Other Half Of Sexless Relationships

October 28th, 2017

24:14

In this episode, the Sugars answer letters from letter writers who want to have sex less frequently than their partners do.

You Must Change Your Life — With Mitchell S. Jackson

October 21st, 2017

38:17

In this episode, the Sugars talk to writer Mitchell S. Jackson, who started selling drugs when he was 14 years old and went to prison for drug …

When Friendship Ends

September 30th, 2017

33:21

Friendships are different from any other type of relationship in our lives. They are purely voluntary, which can make them feel more tenuous. In …

Rapid Fire: Should I Stay Or Go?

September 25th, 2017

34:53

The Sugars bring you another "Rapid Fire" episode, where they give brief answers to a handful of letters that are all centered around a theme. The …

Sexless Relationships, Part 2: Esther Perel

September 16th, 2017

26:00

The Sugars are joined by the therapist Esther Perel to discuss a letter from a husband who is in a sexless marriage and is looking for a way to help his wife heal from trauma.

Sexless Relationships, Part 1: Esther Perel

September 9th, 2017

33:15

A sexless relationship is often a symptom of deeper dysfunction. The Sugars, along with couples therapist Esther Perel, advise a letter writer whose loving partner is erotically absent.

In The Shadow Of Damaged Parents — With Dr. Richard Almond

September 2nd, 2017

34:10

A damaged parent can cast a dark shadow over our lives, especially when we inherit some of that damage. Steve’s father, the psychoanalyst Dr. Richard Almond, joins the Sugars to answer letters and offer a way out.

Pet Dilemmas — With Julie Barton

August 26th, 2017

47:06

This week, adventures in animal ownership! The Sugars, along with Julie Barton -- author of the memoir "Dog Medicine: How My Dog Saved Me From …

Body Weight And Romance — With Ashley C. Ford

August 19th, 2017

34:13

It’s never easy to talk to our romantic partners about their bodies, especially when it’s about weight. The Sugars, along with the writer Ashley C. Ford, answer letters from people questioning their relationships …

Should I Intervene? — With Meghan Daum

August 12th, 2017

40:49

When we decide to meddle, it can often backfire. The Sugars, along with the writer Meghan Daum, answer letters from people who see loved ones heading down the wrong path, but worry intervention might be the wrong move.

The Price Of Our Dreams — With George Saunders

August 5th, 2017

34:42

The Sugars, along with the fiction writer George Saunders, field letters from people who are chasing their creative dreams but frightened by the practical and financial risks that come with that pursuit.

Rapid Fire: Summer 2017 Edition

July 29th, 2017

32:02

In a heated moment, a mother reveals a dark chapter from her childhood to her daughter, then immediately regrets it. What now? In this week’s episode, the Sugars tackle this and several other questions, including how …

The Power Of No, Part 2: Oprah Winfrey

July 22nd, 2017

25:09

"What do I want?" This is the question Oprah Winfrey finally asked herself, after years of struggling to say "no" to people in her life. In the second of this two-part series, the Sugars continue their conversation …

The Power Of No, Part 1: Oprah Winfrey

July 15th, 2017

35:03

There’s incredible power in saying “yes.” It opens up avenues and allows us to be brave. In Cheryl's case, it’s what led to her becoming Sugar. But saying yes to life's opportunities can also have its risks. This week, …

Rapid Fire: A Wealthy Sister, An Impatient Girlfriend, An Unshakable Love

July 8th, 2017

39:10

The Sugars are back for another batch of rapid-fire questions and answers. In this round, the Sugars take on six questions, ranging from a letter writer who is jealous of her sister's wealth, to a young woman who is …

When Bad Things Happen

July 3rd, 2017

33:14

In this episode, the Sugars grapple with a difficult question — how do we make sense of the fact that very bad things can happen to people who have …

Dear Sugar: Do I Wait For My Ex?

June 24th, 2017

26:46

In this episode, the Sugars take a question from a young woman whose boyfriend recently broke up with her because of uncertainty about his sexuality. The letter writer is heartbroken, confused, and wondering if she …

More Money, More Problems

June 18th, 2017

39:24

Money makes us crazy. In this episode, the Sugars take questions from two letter writers struggling with their relationships to money. The first, an aspiring playwright, feels guilty about all the advantages that her …

Am I Too Young To Get Married?

June 10th, 2017

14:52

In this short episode, the Sugars take a question from a 23 year-old woman who is engaged to the man she's been dating since she was 19. As a child …

Former Hellraisers

June 6th, 2017

31:07

Every child has wondered of their parent: What were you like when you were my age? Who were you before I was here? And every parent has to decide how honestly to answer those questions. The Sugars discuss with poet and …

The Infidelity Episodes, Part 4: The Other Woman

May 23rd, 2017

47:50

In our Infidelity series thus far, we've heard from the cheaters, from those who have been cheated on, and from a psychotherapist and expert on the topic. In this final installment, the Sugars focus on the …

The Infidelity Episodes, Part 3: Esther Perel

May 16th, 2017

51:15

The Sugars' exploration of infidelity continues with a conversation with Esther Perel, a relationship therapist with extensive insight and expertise on the subject. What qualifies as infidelity? Why do we go through …

The Infidelity Episodes, Part 2: The Betrayers

May 10th, 2017

35:37

The Sugars continue their exploration of infidelity by hearing from people who have betrayed their partners. They discuss a letter from a desperate wife, whose husband gave her a second chance after an emotional …

The Infidelity Episodes, Part 1: The Betrayed

May 4th, 2017

45:41

The Sugars will be spending the next couple of months working on new episodes. During the month of May, by popular demand, we're listening back to …

Letters From Teenagers

April 27th, 2017

54:01

For most of us, our teenage years were marked by feelings of insecurity, loneliness and uncertainty. This week, the Sugars revisit an episode in which they discussed questions exclusively from teenagers. They're joined …

Dear Dad, It's Over

April 20th, 2017

41:40

We can't choose our parents, but we can choose whether or not to have a relationship with them. This week, the Sugars discuss parental estrangement. …

Career Vs. Love

April 13th, 2017

35:21

You love your partner, you love your career... but they're pulling you in different directions. What do you do? Is it foolish to put your career on …

Rapid Fire: Inbox Outliers

April 5th, 2017

41:32

Infidelity. In-Laws. Friendship. These are just a few of the categories that help keep the Dear Sugar inbox organized. But every once in a while, we get a letter that doesn't fit neatly into any category. This week, …

Love In The Digital Age

March 29th, 2017

35:52

Many of us go online in search of connection. But when it comes to romance, online interactions can leave us feeling profoundly disconnected. This week, the Sugars revisit an episode in which they explored the …

Baby Or Bust

March 22nd, 2017

36:40

You wants kids; your partner doesn't. Or your partner wants kids, and you don't. Whatever the scenario, few subjects are as emotionally charged and potentially deal-breaking in a relationship as a disagreement over the …

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