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LJ writes: “I have always wanted to be married, but things have never worked out for me with my love life. I have Saturn in the Seventh House, and I read that this means it’s unlikely to ever happen for me. Is that true?”

We all start learning astrology with Sun Signs and Moon Signs, but it’s when we get to Saturn that we find the real crunchy issues that can make life difficult. It’s one thing to say “You have Sun in ____ and Moon in _____, so your personality is such-and-such,” but it’s another to look at Saturn in the birth chart and by transit and say “Hey, _____ is a real problem, isn’t it, and it got tougher about six months ago, right?”Astrologers love a chart facing Saturn issues the same way a cardiac surgeon loves a clogged aorta.

Although Saturn represents areas of life where you will naturally face impediments, Saturn actually has its rewards. One of the traditional symbols for Saturn is the Grim Reaper. It might be more accurate if we thought of Saturn as that steely-eyed nun in a Catholic school with a metal ruler, waiting to whack your knuckles when you don’t conjugate a verb properly. She’s tough, but if you focus and pay attention you’ll come out of the experience not only a better person, but a better person who understands Latin. Sure, you can question whether or not you really needed to learn Latin in the first place, or whether or not there was perhaps an easier way to do so, but at least you’ve learned it. That, and now you will be able to binge-watch old episodes of HBO’s Rome and get a chuckle out of the obscene graffiti in the background.

Whatever House of your chart Saturn falls in, you can expect some kind of practical limitations and/or psychological problems in that department of your life. Jacqueline Onassis had Saturn in the Second House, which rules money. That certainly doesn’t mean she was broke though — she was born into money, but kept working hard for it and getting more of it anyway.

I have Saturn in the Ninth House. Among other things, the Ninth House rules things like higher education and long-distance travel. True story: thanks to some bungled paperwork, I was unable to attend USC film school as I had planned, and I have also had a lifelong phobia about foreign travel and the paperwork associated with it. Nonetheless, I am now living on the other side of the continent I was born on, and in a different country. And, as it turns out, I have no obvious sense of shot composition anyway.

Saturn has been traditionally considered by astrologers to be a source of fear, like Darth Vader. When I was a kid I love Star Wars and I had a Darth Vader Pez dispenser. You ever have a Pez dispenser? They’re pretty amusing. Lots of people love collecting them. This, despite the fact that the candy it shoots from its neck are unpleasantly chalky little bricks of sugar with little discernible flavor.

Even though I was a fat kid, I never once ran out of Pez candy and thought “Gee, I’ve got to get more of that stuff.” And believe me: I loved candy when I was a kid. Nonetheless… it was still candy.

What I’m trying to say here is this: yes, Saturn represents fears and limitations. But as you mature and face these things in your life, you will also get definite rewards out of your Saturn… even if those rewards occasionally scrape the roof of your mouth.

So fear not, LJ: you’re not doomed to be forever alone. Relationships are usually a struggle at one point or another, and perhaps at times for you more so than the average person. But in time, with the hard-earned wisdom and self-knowledge that Saturn provides you, you will not only make an excellent mate, but find a good one as well. The effort should prove worth it. In time, you too can turn the terrifying dark Lord of the Sith into a friendly candy dispenser.

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