Dear Miriam,

Where have all the gentlemen gone?

I felt compelled to write to you as recently I have answered a few personal ads placed by farmers in this publication.

May I start by saying that their personal ads are most appealing, expressing great interest in meeting “someone to share a laugh with, to experience both the good times and the bad” etc. However, once they receive my reply in the post and make contact, it’s a whole other story.

Miriam, I’m no dinosaur, but surely a simple phone call is not too much to ask?

It starts off with texting, thanking me for answering their ad, and unless I mention chatting over the phone, it seems the only communication we would have would be via text!

Miriam, I’m no dinosaur, but surely a simple phone call is not too much to ask? How do they expect to find a partner if they cannot even be bothered to pick up the phone? Texting is grand when you already know someone, but to me it’s such a lazy form of communication.

Would love to just meet a kind man who is interested enough to get to know me

The last person I challenged on this got on his high horse; have you any suggestions Miriam? Would love to just meet a kind man who is interested enough to get to know me.

Unlucky in Love

Dear Unlucky in Love,

Thanks for your email. You might be performing a public service here by raising this issue; maybe all would-be-suitors will start taking note!

While I think texting is fine for making the initial contact, if someone is serious about meeting somebody, they should be prepared to pick up the phone.

Sadly, though, I think people are a bit more anxious these days when it comes to making a call. But it’s not as if the texting is going to lead anywhere!

There are two options I can think of. The first is, rather than answer ads, why not place one yourself, and highlight that phone communication is important to you. The other option is to maybe look at other dating services, where you are matched with somebody with similar interests to meet face to face. A quick Google will yield several options.

Wishing you the best of luck in love.

A reader writes

The column received a number of responses in relation to the recent letter We can’t afford college in the UK; here is just one example.

Hi Miriam,

I read with interest your question and answer to a reader regarding affording to go to college in the UK. I am a retired guidance counsellor so have a little experience of this situation. So a few observations:

1 The student in question can apply to ‘student finance UK’ for a loan to cover fees. She may also be entitled to a living grant, but that is dependent on her application. These loans are available to Irish students, they must be repaid but over many years when the student has graduated and is earning above a certain level.

2 If the student is successful in obtaining a place on a medical degree course, then she has very high potential earning power and will have little trouble obtaining a student loan.

3 I know a lot of people are slow to take out a loan for educational purposes but I personally cannot think of a better investment.

4 This student deserves all the support and praise we can give her. Such initiative and ambition is only to be admired. Advise her parents to support her in any way they can. I guarantee they will be so proud of her in the future.

5 It would be good if her parents could have a chat with a guidance counsellor who is familiar with the application process for UK universities. Maybe there is one in her school or they could contact the Institute of Guidance Counsellors for a contact.

Wish that girl the best of luck and not to give up on her dreams and ambitions.



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