Dear Prudence

The “Toxic Friend Awareness” Edition

I’ve recently realized that my friend from college used to make me so distressed and anxious. Now she wants to come visit. Help!

Illustration depicting a female with a microphone

Get More Dear Prudence

Slate Plus members get ad-free versions of all Slate podcasts, plus an extra episode of Dear Prudence every week. Try it free today.

Join Slate Plus

Episode Notes

Prudence is joined this week by Alyssa Furukawa, a public health grad student and knitter who lives in Philadelphia with her enormous puppy.

Prudie and Furukawa dig into letters about how to handle a brother who’s draining your parents of their retirement funds, what to do when you realize that an old friend makes you feel anxious and afraid, how to rebuild an estranged relationship with your parents on your own terms, and what to consider when sex in your marriage becomes nonexistent. Plus, a voicemail from a listener who’s wondering how to stop living in a cluttered, messy home.

Access all of Prudie’s podcasts and columns here.

Got a question for Prudie? Send it to or leave a voicemail message at 401-371-DEAR (3327), and you may hear your question answered on a future episode of the show.

Production by Phil Surkis.

About the Show

Whether it’s a challenge with a lover, a fight with a difficult roommate or boss, or you just like to hear about the challenges other people face, Dear Prudence is the podcast for you. Every week, Prudie and special guests answer questions about relationships, sex, work, family, and life.

All episodes