herald

Monday 20 August 2018

I don't want my pictures online

qMy friend keeps putting pictures of our nights out on her Instagram, which is obviously her prerogative. I respectively asked her to exclude any pictures that I happen to be in but every now and then she just lobs one up.

I am not on any social media nor do I want to be and I feel like it's disrespectful of her to continue to ignore my requests - but talking to her politely and explaining how much this upsets me does not seem to have any long-term effect.

I work in a serious job and pictures of us out sipping cocktails are not the kind of images I want to be associated with - but apart from that I am just a really private person. Is she doing this to annoy me and what I can do to make her see that it's not a good thing to do to a friend?

aPlenty of people live their lives through social media and can't seem to understand why others do not want to showcase their every move online. It's perfectly understandable that you would rather not put up pictures for the sake of your career as well as your privacy.

It's unfortunate your friend seems to be unable to appreciate why you don't share her love of Instagram and despite you asking her to leave you out of photographs, she hasn't been able to resist.

My advice is to completely avoid being in photographs with her as she just can't be trusted to keep them to herself. Alternatively, you could insist on using your own phone for pictures with her or in group shots so that you can have control over where the photos go. Hopefully this will make her understand how serious you are about your privacy

qI used to be nice and slim when I was a teenager and then over time I put a few stone on, and then a few more. Now in my 30s, I am seriously overweight and the job of losing it seems too big.

I can see how people look at me with contempt and pity but I just get on with things and try to make the most of what I've got. And what I have is a good life - a lovely family, friends and a satisfying job.

There's no romance apart from a few curious men who never call me back, but you can't have everything. Part of me wants to lose the weight but overtime it has become part of my identity and I am afraid to face up to a mammoth task - which is what it would be. I don't know what's at the root of the whole thing but I can't stop thinking about it.

aIt's great to hear that overall you're satisfied with your life and generally happy despite your weight. But, unfortunately, being overweight greatly increases your risk for a whole host of diseases, including heart disease, cancer and diabetes. It really is a good idea for your long-term health to get your weight under control.

My advice is to start as soon as you can and aim to lose weight steadily rather than embarking on any dangerous crash diets.

Focus on losing one to two pounds a week through eating small portions of natural, whole food.

It may also be a big boost to club together with some friends to form a support or walking group or to even join a weight-loss club as many people find they need advice and encouragement. See this as a long-term project for your health and well-being.

qWhen I first started going out with my girlfriend six months ago I really liked the fact that she was super-independent but I think that she needs to tone it down a bit.

Before you accuse me of being a control freak let me say that I absolutely do not want to dominate her, I just want her to let me in and let me mind her a bit and be a man in the old fashioned sense of that word.

She refuses all help and even told me I was needy when I asked for a hug - I didn't make the same mistake twice and over time things get more and more distant, and yet, I'm still into her. Is this just a classic power struggle and if so how do two very single minded people break the poker face routine?

aI definitely think that there needs to be a balance struck. I'm absolutely in support of women being independent and making their own living, but it's also nice to let a man be an old-fashioned romantic sometimes.

Taking her out for dinner and holding the door open for her are just polite gestures rather than an attempt at control.

I do admire her determination but agree that she needs to soften up a little bit and stop playing mind games with you for the sake of your relationship.

My advice is to sit down with her and explain all of your concerns. Be supportive towards her point of view but also let her know that you would really like her to open up more to you emotionally and relax a little bit on gender roles.

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