While I'm away, readers give the advice.
On support at its most uncomplicated:
When I was deciding to get a divorce, I felt embarrassed, ashamed, like a failure. I will always remember how much the following words from my father meant to me. He said, "I don't know the whole story, and I don't need to know. Just know that I am on your side no matter what." It was the support and love I needed. Simple and to the point. Sometimes that is all a parent needs to say.
On being the lone single at a gathering of couples:
A number of years ago, our boss and his wife invited seven of us to their summer home for a weekend. They hosted a party to introduce us to family and friends. The introductions went like this:
This is Wendy, and she is with Rob, over there.
This is Jane, and she is married to Tom, on her right.
This is Harry, and he belongs to Betty, over here.
And next to her is "Jenny" (me) and … before he could say more, one of the wives spoke up and said, "She belongs to all of us."
It was a fabulous weekend with great friends.
On thin people who complain about their weight:
One response may be, to suggest her true beauty, "If only you could see what I see."