Problem Page Edition 26 2017

This week – when he loved hearing your voice but doesn’t call for 2 days and when your mother suggests your sister is mistreating your kids in your absence.

The word love spelled out in wooden blocks

If you would like any advice, feel free to treat me as your agony aunt. Just message me or pop a comment in the comment box at the end of this post. I promise to be gentle.

Here are this week’s questions.

QHe says he is fond of me.  What does that mean?

A: It probably means that whilst he likes you as a person and even has a certain amount of affection for you, he doesn’t see you as a romantic partner.

It’s the kind of thing we say so as not to hurt someone’s feelings.

Without knowing your exact circumstances, of course, it’s difficult to be precise, but ‘fond’ is the kind of word we use for friends, other people’s children and pets.

I hope you are not about to have your romantic hopes dashed.

The only way to find out for sure is to ask him what exactly he means by ‘fond’. I suspect you can tell whether he fancies you or not by his body language and whether he is always trying to spend time with you.

We might be ‘fond’ of someone but it usually doesn’t mean we’re pulling out all the stops to spend time with them.


Q: Why would your boyfriend just leave you without any reason?


A: He wouldn’t. There’s always a reason and if you have been in a relationship for a decent amount of time you are quite entitled to ask why.

If you are very young though, romantic feelings come and go without any particular reason, or because someone else seems more appealing.

Leaving without any explanation is pretty immature.

I would start asking what is up with him and if you are no longer in contact then I’m afraid you’ll just have to chalk it up to experience.

Q: How do I show my mum that respect and obedience are two different things? I want her to know that even if I can’t obey her on some stuff, I still respect her and hold her in high esteem.

A: I can hear mothers all over the country gritting their teeth at your question. If your mum asks you to do something – and it’s reasonable, like put your clothes away, get to college on time, tidy your room, doing what she asks is a mark of respect.

It’s not a question of obedience. It’s a question of pulling your weight whilst you still live at home whilst acknowledging that her (and your family’s) hard work is keeping a roof over your head.

The best way to show respect is to help out. If my kids told me they respected me but weren’t going to ‘obey’ me, the WiFi password would mysteriously change over night and all pocket money would be stopped until they understood the basics of team work.

Buy your mum a huge bunch of flowers and give her a hand. She’s the only mum you’ll get.

Q: What are his intentions? We talk every day long distance. I sense he cares about me and obviously he likes me a lot since he bothered to keep in contact.

A: Let’s be honest. With email and social media, it is easy to keep in contact. Just a touch of a button and absolutely no effort required.

You’ll be able to gauge his intentions when he starts making some effort to come to see you or to plan a get-together – anything which involves actual PHYSICAL contact.

Until that time, it’s all ‘pie in the sky’.

From your question it sounds like you hardly know this man at all and, without more info about your situation it’s difficult to be precise but I think you need to know a lot more about this man before you build a romantic fantasy which might have absolutely no basis in reality.

Far better to concentrate on a nice guy who lives just around the corner.


Q: What should I do when a well-known girl proposes to me, but I am in love with another girl but it’s one-sided?

A: Isn’t it obvious? Say no. Why would you want to break her heart and live a lie?

It may be that you are expected by friends and family or your culture to get married and settle down and I appreciate it may not be so easy to extricate yourself.

But if you do have any say in the matter whatsoever, your answer should be no and you would do better to forget the other girl you love and seek out a partner you do love and who you can be with.

Q: What would you do if your mum told you in confidence that your sister threw your 2 y/o son onto a couch in anger and then said she was just kidding?
I also witnessed her yell at my son unnecessarily & felt like she has anger issues. My son is 2 y/o, he has a twin brother and 4-year-old sister. I find her behaviour odd. She only sees them a handful of times out of the year. My mum said he was whining a little, she wasn’t joking & she overreacted.

A: You need to say something to your sister to set some boundaries and expectations for how you expect her to treat her nephews and niece.

It doesn’t matter if she has ‘anger issues’ – that sounds like an excuse to me. As adults, most of us can control our temper and our behaviour – especially around children.

I would tell her you are concerned that she has problems keeping her temper around your kids and ask what it is that is bugging her.

Incidentally, where were you when all this was going on? Are you relying on your mum and sister for childcare – have they agreed to this or is there a chance you might be putting on them slightly?

Sometimes it’s easy to expect our relatives to put up with our kids just because they are our relatives – but they don’t always want to and it isn’t always fair to do that.

Even if your kids are just normal, boisterous toddlers, they can still be difficult to deal with. My two were far from little angels!

I think you need to sort out childcare and, at least for the time being, make sure you are present when your sister visits. It’s unfair on your mum to expect her to play judge and jury between her daughters.

If your sister DID throw your little one onto the couch then that is not acceptable behaviour and you need to ensure he’s not left in that situation again.

By the sound of it, your mum is trying to give you a gentle heads up that your sister can’t cope and you need to step in and care for your kids when she’s there.


Q: What does it mean if a man says he enjoyed hearing your voice but then doesn’t call for two days?

I always thought when someone says that over that phone that means they miss you. But wouldn’t they want to hear more of the voice and call the following day as well? It’s been 2 days.what does it mean and what should I do? Should I show him I am upset that I didn’t hear from him for that long?


A: I think you need to take a deep breath and step back a little here.

I think saying “I enjoyed hearing your voice” is a bit of an odd thing to say, to be honest. Do you meet this man? Do you know him well?

Don’t you think if he missed you he would want to see you IN PERSON?

2 days is nothing at all. People still have lives, responsibilities and commitments you know, even when they are dating.

I think you run the risk of appearing way too keen and I absolutely would not hound the man to show him you are ‘upset’.

Far better to show him you have a life of your own and are not a doormat waiting by the phone, surely?

This man doesn’t sound particularly keen to me I’m afraid and in your shoes, I would keep my dignity and take the view that if he’s interested he’ll call and if not, well, there’s someone far better out there.How would you have responded to these questions? I’d love to know. You can find more advice on my problem page

Disclaimer: All materials included in this post are intended for informational purposes only. This post/information is not intended to and should not be used to replace medical or psychiatric advice offered by physicians or other health care providers. The author will not be liable for any direct, indirect, consequential, special, exemplary or other damages arising therefrom. 

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