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Dear AVENUE - Surviving Christmas With The In-laws

Dear AVENUE - Surviving Christmas With The In-laws

Dear AVENUE 

Every year I dread Christmas. Both my parents and my husband's are so demanding and outspoken. They tend to dictate what is going to happen, everything from arrival time to the brand of sherry to be used in the trifle. I bite my tongue and try to please because I don’t want to cause a fight, but I’m fuming inside. I’m afraid a time will come when I erupt. I should say something but I’m not very good at standing up for myself and they are such unreasonable people. Any suggestions?

Dear AVENUE - My Wife is Drinking Too Much

Dear AVENUE - My Wife is Drinking Too Much

Dear AVENUE

My wife and I have been married for 24 years and both our children have left home. Over the last two to three years, since our youngest moved out, my wife’s drinking has increased dramatically.  Looking back, she always had a tendency to go too far, whether we were at parties or out with friends but I don’t think she drank alone at home.  Nowadays when I get home from work, she has already had a few and is very argumentative.  I’ve tried talking to her about it but she gets furious and it ends in a huge fight with her threatening to leave me.  It’s getting so bad, part of me wishes she would leave but when she is sober, we get along well.  I just don’t know what to do, please help.

 

Dear AVENUE - Coping with Anxiety and Depression

Dear AVENUE - Coping with Anxiety and Depression

Dear AVENUE

For the past two years I have been having bouts of depression. I end up feeling anxious or worn out for no real reason and I find it really hard to communicate with people without lashing out at them. It happens even for short periods of time, like I might go from happy to distressed and angry from hour to hour. It’s affecting my work and I need to find a way to manage it before it causes major problems with my colleagues. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Dear AVENUE - My Husband's Job is Stressing All of Us

Dear AVENUE - My Husband's Job is Stressing All of Us

Dear AVENUE

My husband has a very stressful job and he complains about it every day.  There’s a lot of conflict between him and one of his colleagues and he’s not good at managing it.  When he comes home, he’s in a bad mood, sometimes he barely speak to me and the kids.  It’s been going on for an age and it’s really awful.  I try to speak to him about it but he just barks at me, saying I don’t understand.  I see the children watching the clock, waiting for Dad to come home and they scarper before he does.  It’s all becoming unbearable, please help.

Dear AVENUE - Step Family Holidays Without the Tears

Dear AVENUE - Step Family Holidays Without the Tears

Dear AVENUE

My partner and I both have children from our previous marriages.  He wants us all to go on a family holiday but we haven’t been together for very long and our children are all different ages from 4 to 14.  I can’t help thinking it will end in tears but he is so enthusiastic about the idea.  What should I do?

Dear AVENUE - My Partner is Such a Flirt

Dear AVENUE - My Partner is Such a Flirt

Dear AVENUE

My partner is such a flirt.  Every time we go out, he spends more time eyeing up other women than paying any attention to me.  It doesn’t matter if we’re out for dinner or at the supermarket, it’s so embarrassing and humiliating. When I pull him up about it, he says I’m being too sensitive.  Am I overreacting?

Dear AVENUE - My Sister-in-Law is Trying to Pilfer The Family Jewels

Dear AVENUE - My Sister-in-Law is Trying to Pilfer The Family Jewels

Dear AVENUE

My dear old Mum passed away last year and my sister-in-law is trying to pilfer some of her jewellery, paintings and the silverware. I’m absolutely livid, especially as my brother is being his usual passive self and saying nothing, he’s so hen-pecked! It’s hard for me to talk to him because she’s always there and he constantly defends her, whatever the circumstances. I’m afraid she’ll help herself to things when I’m not there. What can I do that won’t cause a huge family bust up?