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Dear Aunty D: October 2022

by Aiden

Dolly Koghar helps you navigate love and relationships.

The Eternal Tug-of-War

Dear Aunty D,

My husband and I have been married for 10 years and have three beautiful children. We try our best to surround our kids with positivity, but since my husband and I are both working individuals, the children are often left with their grandparents, from both my side and my husband’s, who don’t appreciate each other. Now I find my children getting caught in the middle of their disregard for each other. Each side openly blames the other for the innocent misdemeanours of my children, without realising the impact it will have on them. I’m really concerned since I don’t want my children to grow up in this negative environment. How do I shield them?

Dear The Eternal Tug-of-War,

It’s sad that the very people who could have passed on the wisdom of their years to their grandchildren are behaving in such a childish and corrosive behaviour. The kids need to understand that grandparents are human too, and equally capable of making mistakes in their thinking and behaviour. They should avoid getting involved in the crossfire, and be discerning, remaining neutral and respectful to both sides. Meanwhile, you need to make it clear to both the parties that you’ll withdraw their joy of visiting grandkids if they do not refrain from flinging mud balls at each other, since it’s sure to soil your children’s receptive and vulnerable minds.  

A Worried Father

Dear Aunty D,

I lost my wife within a few days of my son’s birth, and taking care of him since then has made me overprotective of him. He has just finished the IB and wants to pursue his further education in science. However, he has a natural inclination for the arts and I think it will do him well to enrol into a creative course in a good university abroad. I have tried to bring this up with him, but he seems adamant about studying science. I suspect that he is giving in to peer pressure and considering only courses and universities his friends are applying to. How do I help him see his strengths, without being pushy or restrictive?

Dear A Worried Father,

Once your child is ready for further education, consider them to be masters of their own destiny. It is best you back off being too aggressive about your opinion and thoughts on his strengths which might work aversely. Be supportive of whatever he decides for himself, and do keep in mind that at this point of time, neither of you can really know his life’s true calling. Nevertheless, I would highly advise that you set a realistic and defined limit on how much you want to spend on his education, so he’s not ‘window-shopping’ endlessly.

Modern Love

Dear Aunty D,

My wife and I have been married for a year and a half. Ours was an arranged marriage and we continually grew fond of each other over the eight months we were courting. However, since the past couple of months, she has been acting really quiet and distant. I have tried asking her if something is up or bothering her, but she continues to go about the conversation as if nothing is wrong. She behaves normally in front of my friends and family as well, but when we are by ourselves, I feel the distance. I don’t know how to get her to tell me what the issue is.

Dear Modern Love,

For now let her be where she needs to be, which in no way means to ignore her, but make it clear that you’d very much like for her to share whatever it is that’s bothering her. So, when and if she does open up to you, be it about PMS or her own personal issues, listen up not only with heart and mind, but raise your antennas high, so to interpret what it is she’s really telling, for there is no enigma greater than ‘woman’! We need space and attention, usually simultaneously; so be attentive and caring without crowding, and be supportive but not interfering!

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