herald

Sunday 19 August 2018

Ask Rosanna: He is so jealous of my guy pals

ON an insecure boyfriend, making pocket money, covering for a cheat and a girlfriend who keeps getting drunk

Q: My boyfriend of two years is ridiculously jealous of all my male friends, most of whom I've known since my college years. He goes all silent if I arrange to meet them, so I started to ask him along, but he just sits there brooding. I think couples should be able to enjoy nights out alone as it proves there is trust there. Now my pals have taken against him. I love him to bits but my freedom or him is a tough choice. I've tried talking to him but he is convinced I want to sleep with my friends and that they want me too.

A: Obviously, you're perfectly entitled to have male friends and I agree that it's important for couples not to live in each other's pockets. A relationship is impossible without trust and it surprises me that your boyfriend still struggles with this after two years.

Explain that dropping your friends is not a possibility, so either he learns to deal with you having guy friends and makes an effort to talk to them, or else you'll be forced to break up.

You're being bullied by his petty jealousies and he needs to know that you're serious about how his behaviour is affecting you. He must deal with his insecurities, or lose you over them.

QMy father lost his job some months back and as a result things have changed radically at home. I'm 16 years old and used to get pocket money so I could see movies etc. I have applied for part-time jobs but just keep hitting a brick wall. I feel embarrassed when my friends offer to pay for me so I make excuses such as 'I have to babysit for my little sister'.

I just want to be able to do normal teenage things. There are lots of excursions planned at school as it is transition year and I just know I won't be able to go.

ATransition year offers some fantastic opportunities, but they generally cost money. It's kind of your friends to offer to pay for you, but I understand that you don't want to always feel indebted to them.

I advise you to continue searching for a part-time job, it would give you just enough cash for excursions with friends.

You could also consider more creative ways to earn money: gardening for neighbours, washing cars and tidying garages, dog walking or babysitting. Put together some homemade flyers and hand them out around the locality. Or you could see if there's anything you own in the house that would sell at a car boot sale.

Brainstorm with family or friends -- once you're motivated and prepared to work hard, then you'll be surprised at the many ways you could earn some pocket money. Good luck.

QMy best friend is doing the dirt on her boyfriend and I'm getting sick of covering for her. She has told him a few times that she's out with me when she's actually seeing other guys. I've covered for her and I've told her that it has to stop.

I've been texting her boyfriend a lot recently and now I'm starting to like him. I'm not sure what to do . . .

AIt's a real shame that your friend has been cheating on her boyfriend -- she lacks respect for him and is stringing him along rather than having the courage to break up with him.

But, your behaviour is almost as bad, because you're being just as deceitful. I understand that you're trying to be a loyal friend, but can you imagine how her boyfriend would feel if he discovered how dishonest both of you are being towards him?

As for you admitting that you're starting to like this guy, I can't quite believe that you honestly think that getting together with him would be a possibility. He's your best friend's boyfriend! I recommend you forget that idea and stop texting him.

Speak to your friend seriously about what she has being doing and the future problems she's creating for herself. Urge her to either put an end to her cheating or to end it with her boyfriend. Either way, the pattern of lies and deceit must be broken.

QI don't know what to do about my girlfriend's drinking. We've been together for about a year and we've always gone out a good bit but, lately, she can't go home without getting hammered.

To make matters worse, she gets really argumentative with drink on board. I've asked her whether there is something on her mind, but she says that there's nothing bothering her. I don't think she's an alcoholic as she's very much into fitness, but I don't know how much more of this I can put up with.

AIf this is an issue which is only coming to light now, then you're right to trust your instincts and try to get to the bottom of why her drinking has increased. People turn to alcohol for many reasons, including boredom and escapism.

Quite apart from the plethora of health problems that over- consumption can bring about, she gets argumentative when she drinks and that behaviour will chip away at your relationship.

It's important for you to unearth the root cause that she may even be unaware of. Perhaps she's struggling at work, experiencing problems with friends or family, or has started hanging out with a new group of friends.

Take note of every time she gets drunk and arrange a serious talk with her. Consider also having a quiet word with a close friend of hers or a family member that you can trust. Focus on developing healthy weekend hobbies together as a couple, to help break the pattern of her drinking.

She needs understanding and support to help her overcome this, not confrontation.

For more information and support visit drinkaware.ie.

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