Cathy is a comic strip drawn by Cathy Guisewite. It featured a woman who struggled through the "four basic guilt groups" of life — food, love, mom, and work — the strip gently poked fun at the lives and foibles of modern women. Cathy's characteristics and issues both made fun of and sometimes fed into negative stereotypes about women. The strip debuted on November 22, 1976, and at its peak appeared in over 1,400 newspapers. The strips have been collected into more than 20 books. Three television specials were also created. Guisewite received the National Cartoonists Society Reuben Award in 1992 for the strip.
Initially, the strip was based largely on Guisewite's own life as a single woman. "The syndicate felt it would make the strip more relatable if the character’s name and my name were the same," Guisewite said in an interview. "They felt it would make it a more personal strip, and it would help people to know it was a real woman who was going through these things. I hated the idea of calling it 'Cathy.'" However, Guisewite had Cathy's longtime boyfriend Irving propose marriage on Valentine's Day 2004. The two characters married in the February 5, 2005 strip. That same year, Cathy appeared in the 75th anniversary party of Blondie and Dagwood.
On August 11, 2010, Cathy Guisewite announced the decision to end the run of Cathy. On October 3, 2010, the final strip ran, with the revelation that Cathy is pregnant with a girl.