Dear Queenie,
My husband’s mother does not ever want to take care of our two sons, but she is always willing to watch her daughter’s child. What’s more, she expects me to help her daughter find a babysitter for when she can’t take the kid.
Queenie, should I tell her how I feel about all this, or keep my mouth shut for the sake of peace in the family?—Disgusted daughter-in-law

Dear Daughter-in-law,
Could it be that your mother-in-law does not feel up to managing more than one (probably very active) child at a time? Try talking to her (or ask your husband to do so) to find out why she shows such preference.
As for the baby-sitter question, you are not obliged to make any specific arrangements, but you could give your sister-in-law a few phone numbers – for the sake of peace in the family – and let her make her own arrangements.

Dear Queenie,
My husband is just wonderful until he gets angry. Most of the time he is kind and gentle, but when he gets mad he yells and curses and throws things at me. He has never actually hit me, but I’m scared he might do it one of these days.
Queenie, am I overreacting?—Worried wife

Dear Wife,
You are not overreacting, but it seems your husband is. Apparently he has anger issues and if he does not take measures – professional counselling and anger management training – you could end up seriously injured.
Insist that he take such measures and – especially if he resists doing so – contact Safe Haven ((office 9277 or (721) 523-6400, E-mail address: info@safehavensxm.sx , Facebook: SafeHavenSt.Maarten or 24-hour hotline 9333) for assistance.

Dear Queenie,
My boyfriend has a habit of breaking dates or just not showing up as much as half the time and he never explains why. Other than that he’s everything I could ask for.
I’ve talked to him about this and asked him to let me know when it’s going to happen, but nothing changes.
It also bugs me that he’s never introduced me to any of his friends and we’ve never done anything in a group with them, it’s always just the two of us.
Queenie, what do you think about all this?—Confused girlfriend

Dear Girlfriend,
Your boyfriend may just be unreliable, but I suspect he is married, or at least in a relationship with someone else, and does not want to take a chance on the other woman in his life finding out about you – and, of course, you finding out about her (or could it possibly be a “him”?).

Dear Queenie,
My husband and I eloped and because we were strapped for cash we used my grandmother’s wedding ring for the marriage ceremony.
We’re a lot better off financially now but my husband still hasn’t bought me a ring of my own. He always has an excuse – we’re buying a house, he has to pay our credit card bills, whatever.
Queenie, this is really getting to me. How do I fix it?—Lady of no ring

Dear Lady,
Many women would be pleased to wear an heirloom ring as the symbol of their own marriage, especially if the previous owner’s marriage was long and successful. However, your feelings on the matter are your own.
Have you really explained to your husband how much this means to you? If so, professional counselling might help you get through to him. Also, you might want to consider professional financial counselling if your husband’s excuses have a real financial basis.

Dear Queenie,
How do you introduce someone you’re living with but not married to? You can’t say “husband” or “wife” because you’re not legally married, but “boyfriend” or girlfriend” seems too casual, “partner” sounds like a business relationship, “lover” sounds like it’s just for sex and “significant other” is just a big mouthful.
Any suggestions, Queenie?—Introduction Etty Ket

Dear Etty Ket,
I understand your dilemma.
How about “life partner”? Or does that seem too permanent? Maybe “live-in boyfriend/girlfriend”?
But you do not need to explain the details of your relationship at first introduction. It is enough to say, “This is (whatever his or her name is),” and leave the further details for later conversation as the need comes up.

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