My Friends Say I Shouldn’t Live With My Ex. Are They Right?

Dr. Wendy Walsh

Written by: Dr. Wendy Walsh

Dr. Wendy Walsh

Known as America's Relationship Expert, Dr. Wendy Walsh is an award-winning television journalist, radio host & podcaster, and the author of three books on relationships and thousands of print and digital articles. More than 1.5 million people follow her sage advice on social media. She holds a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology and teaches in the Psychology Department at California State University Channel Islands and has been the host of "The Dr. Wendy Walsh Show" on iHeart Radio's KFI AM 640 since 2015. Walsh is also a former Emmy-nominated co-host of "The Doctors," as well as former host of the nationally syndicated show "EXTRA." She was named a Time Magazine Person of the Year in 2017 after speaking out about harassment at a major news network.

See full bio »

Edited by: Lillian Castro

Lillian Castro

Discuss This! Discuss This!
Advertiser Disclosure

Reader Question:

For about 13 years I have been single. When I lost my job nine years ago, my ex-husband and son offered a room so I would not be homeless. I’m still with them and we get along. But I have not found a job, and I haven’t found a date either. My girlfriends say it’s because no man would want to be around a woman who boards with her ex. At the moment, there is nothing I can do about my life situation.

Are my friends right?

-Louise (Oregon)

Dr. Wendy Walsh’s Answer:

I think you have put your basic human needs in the wrong order of priority. Psychologist Abraham Maslow’s famous hierarchy of human needs puts the order this way:

1. Food, warmth and air.

2. Security of employment, body and health.

3. Friendship, family and sexual intimacy.

Your friends are wrong about one thing. Men aren’t avoiding you because you board with your ex. Instead, you are avoiding men by not taking care of yourself first and making yourself dateable.

I assure you, you are lovable and deserve to be loved. But the first relationship you need to attend to is the one with yourself. Love yourself by improving your “level two” needs and a man will come next.

I highly recommend getting a psychological partner in a therapist. Check your local university for a low-fee clinic.

No counseling or psychotherapy advice: The Site does not provide psychotherapy advice. The Site is intended only for use by consumers in search of general information of interest pertaining to problems people may face as individuals and in relationships and related topics. Content is not intended to replace or serve as substitute for professional consultation or service. Contained observations and opinions should not be misconstrued as specific counseling advice.

Advertiser Disclosure is a free online resource that offers valuable content and comparison services to users. To keep this resource 100% free, we receive compensation from many of the offers listed on the site. Along with key review factors, this compensation may impact how and where products appear across the site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). does not include the entire universe of available offers. Editorial opinions expressed on the site are strictly our own and are not provided, endorsed, or approved by advertisers.

Our Editorial Review Policy

Our site is committed to publishing independent, accurate content guided by strict editorial guidelines. Before articles and reviews are published on our site, they undergo a thorough review process performed by a team of independent editors and subject-matter experts to ensure the content’s accuracy, timeliness, and impartiality. Our editorial team is separate and independent of our site’s advertisers, and the opinions they express on our site are their own. To read more about our team members and their editorial backgrounds, please visit our site’s About page.