Armchair Psychologist Gets An Update On "Help! My BF Puts Me Last, After His Ex-Wife And Children!”

3 Min Read

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The Armchair Psychologist Gets An Update!

A woman who wrote about her BF putting his Ex and children before her, and even refusing to spend the night with her, instead spending the night on his ex's couch, wrote us an update. I advised her to consider her option and move on, given that he wasn't open to couple's therapy and the like.

Here is the update: In conclusion, we continued to try to work on being there for each other — physically and to help fulfill each others needs (his need to be there for his son every other weekend (eight hour drive away) and work six days a week and my need to be included in his visits (from time to time) and to spend more quality time in general (because really, the only time we were spending together was Sundays every other week). To me, this was not enough, especially if you are living with that person trying to build a future. There were no solutions being presented. During the week he did not come home until late which meant no quality time together then either. He did not see the problem in this. I could see if this was temporary or if we planned long weekends from time to time or even a vacation, but this is what he wants for his life. To top it off…. his ex is moving to Texas and he decides he is moving there too. C'est la vie…. #heartbroken hope that all makes sense by the way… I am not a very good writer. He has been out for over a month now….sigh, moving on….

Help! I Gave Away Pennies And Got shamed!

Dear Armchair Psychologist,
I need you to help my friend and me settle a debate. Recently, while leaving the gym, I gave a few pennies to a panhandling woman. My friend thought this to be rude and patronizing. I argued I didn't have any change other than the pennies and it's better to give some money rather than none. Who is right? - Generous Donor

Dear Generous Donor,

What a great gift you possess to have compassion for your fellow man/woman and to help someone in need. Homelessness is an epidemic in many American cities and many homeless people come from extremely dire situations where every penny counts. Your friend should quit shaming you and tap into his/her own reasons for feeling guilt, and channel that energy into volunteering at a homeless center!

- The Armchair Psychologist

Need more armchair psychologist in your life? Check out the last installment or email armchairpsychologist@swaaymedia.com to get some advice of your own!

How to Learn Much More From the Books You Read

It is one thing to read and another thing to understand what you are reading. Not only do you want to understand, but also remember what you've read. Otherwise, we can safely say that if we're not gaining anything from what we read, then it's a big waste of time.

Whatever you read, there are ways to do so in a more effective manner to help you understand better. Whether you are reading by choice, for an upcoming test, or work-related material, here are a few ways to help you improve your reading skills and retain that information.

Read with a Purpose

Never has there been a shortage of great books. So, someone recommended a great cookbook for you. You start going through it, but your mind is wandering. This doesn't mean the cookbook was an awful recommendation, but it does mean it doesn't suit nor fulfill your current needs or curiosity.

Maybe your purpose is more about launching a business. Maybe you're a busy mom and can't keep office hours, but there's something you can do from home to help bring in more money, so you want information about that. At that point, you won't benefit from a cookbook, but you could gain a lot of insight and find details here on how-to books about working from home. During this unprecedented year, millions have had to make the transition to work from home, and millions more are deciding to do that. Either way, it's not a transition that comes automatically or easily, but reading about it will inform you about what working from home entails.


When you pre-read it primes your brain when it's time to go over the full text. We pre-read by going over the subheadings, for instance, the table of contents, and skimming through some pages. This is especially useful when you have formal types of academic books. Pre-reading is a sort of warm-up exercise for your brain. It prepares your brain for the rest of the information that will come about and allows your brain to be better able to pick the most essential pieces of information you need from your chosen text.


Highlighting essential sentences or paragraphs is extremely helpful for retaining information. The problem, however, with highlighting is that we wind up highlighting way too much. This happens because we tend to highlight before we begin to understand. Before your pages become a neon of colored highlights, make sure that you only highlight what is essential to improve your understanding and not highlight the whole page.

Speed Read

You might think there have been no new ways to read, but even the ancient skill of reading comes up with innovative ways; enter speed reading. The standard slow process shouldn't affect your understanding, but it does kill your enthusiasm. The average adult goes through around 200 to 250 words per minute. A college student can read around 450 words, while a professor averages about 650 words per minute, to mention a few examples. The average speed reader can manage 1,500 words; quite a difference! Of course, the argument arises between quality and quantity. For avid readers, they want both quantity and quality, which leads us to the next point.

Quality Reading

Life is too short to expect to gain knowledge from just one type of genre. Some basic outcomes of reading are to expand your mind, perceive situations and events differently, expose yourself to other viewpoints, and more. If you only stick to one author and one type of material, you are missing out on a great opportunity to learn new things.

Having said that, if there's a book you are simply not enjoying, remember that life is also too short to continue reading it. Simply, close it, put it away and maybe give it another go later on, or give it away. There is no shame or guilt in not liking a book; even if it's from a favorite author. It's pretty much clear that you won't gain anything from a book that you don't even enjoy, let alone expect to learn something from it.


If you're able to summarize what you have read, then you have understood. When you summarize, you are bringing up all the major points that enhance your understanding. You can easily do so chapter by chapter.

Take a good look at your life and what's going on in it. Accordingly, you'll choose the material that is much more suitable for your situation and circumstances. When you read a piece of information that you find beneficial, look for a way to apply it to your life. Knowledge for the sake of knowledge isn't all that beneficial. But the application of knowledge from a helpful book is what will help you and make your life more interesting and more meaningful.