The New York Times and WBUR presents the Dear Sugars podcast. Co-hosted by the very talented author, Cheryl Strayed, this podcast originated with Cheryl’s popular Dear Sugar advice column on The Rumpus.
So you’ve probably guessed it, the Dear Sugars podcast is basically an audio advice column, hosted by Cheryl Strayed and Steve Almond. Listeners send in letters with topics (sometimes deep and dark) that they need advice on, to which the hosts offer radical empathy in return.
Each episode of Dear Sugars starts with either Cheryl or Steve reading a letter that was sent in by an anonymous writer from around the world. Cheryl, Steve and other guests will then discuss the topic at hand and expose the writer’s problem as perfectly human. They don’t only give advice, but also offer people a fresh-eyed and compassionate view on the letter-writers’ lives that most resonates with them.
Here are three episodes of Dear Sugars that you should listen to:
Can a Sexual Assault Survivor Love a Rapist?
On this episode, 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 high school.
“I can’t ignore this glaring time that he was a shitty person, yet I also must give him credit for being honest. I don’t know, I feel lost. We all make mistakes when we’re young, I know I did. But how do I justify how much I love him? How do I justify how much I hate him right now? Is a reformed rapist a thing? And if so, why don’t we never talk about it? Can it be okay for a sexual assault survivor to love a rapist?”
The Power of No with Oprah Winfrey (A two-part episode)
On this episode, the Sugars and special guest, Oprah Winfrey, talk about how to say no, why to say no – and what happens in the wake thereof.
“If a person turns against you because you say ‘no’ to them, you recognize that that wasn’t real love anyway.”
The Invisible Work (Most) Women Do with Gemma Hartley
On this episode, the Sugars and Gemma Hartley read letters from wives and girlfriends who are fed up with the imbalance of domestic labour in their homes as well as in their romantic relationships.
“Being in charge of providing the food, clothes, doctors, medicines, activities and holidays, our two children and our pets takes a toll. When I complain of being mentally exhausted because of how much I do, my husband’s typical response is to tell me about all the work he does around the house. I am sad to say that we conform to gender roles when it comes to the division of labour.”
Dear Sugars is a wonderful podcast, filled with amazing advice that will last you a lifetime.