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Ask Rosanna: Should I wed perfect man I don't love?

Q I PICKED out a designer dress for my wedding to my boyfriend of three years at the weekend. I think we'll have a good marriage as we have a house in the country we're going to restore, we both want a large family, and when we argue we work things out quickly.

I also know I don't love him. The love of my life dumped me when I was 24 after we'd been together for five years. I was left devastated and suffered from depression.

I've picked myself up and, at 33, I think it's time I got married, and feel having children will make it worthwhile. Having a man who adores me and who can provide me with a good life isn't a bad thing either. Do you think I'll regret not waiting in case someone else comes along who I can really fall in love with?

A You must think long and hard about this. You're working hard to build what you believe will be the ideal life but while you may create what many would view as the perfect life, what's the point if you're not doing it with the person you truly love?

You may never get your former boyfriend back, but I feel that you're setting yourself up for a lifetime of regret by marrying somebody else under false pretences.

Personally, I'd rather do without the material goods once I have the person I love beside me. Take a few days off to be by yourself to think, or speak to somebody you can trust and who can offer their honest advice.

Q My friends from school came over for a sleepover on Friday night. My mum came into the kitchen and started stuffing pizza in her mouth -- everyone could see she was drunk, and it was so embarrassing. My dad left last year and she didn't want him to and now she drinks wine whenever he rings to talk to us. I am 13, and my brother is 11 and I'm afraid they'll make us go live with my dad. His new girlfriend looks like a Barbie doll and makes me feel like one of those little fat Russian dolls.

A Your mum is struggling to deal with the breakdown of her marriage and has turned to alcohol. Unfortunately her behaviour will have a direct effect on you and your brother. Your mum needs help as soon as possible to overcome her reliance on alcohol when she is sad or stressed. I urge you to tell a responsible adult, whether it be a friend, relative or even your dad. Your mum would benefit from seeking professional help, or even just having the emotional support from another adult. Please act on this as soon as possible.

Q My boyfriend's dad died two months ago and life has been very hard ever since. He sits in front of the telly and says very little. When I try to get him to talk he gets cross. What can I do to get him back to the way he used to be?

A Your boyfriend has been going through a tough time and the grieving process affects everybody differently. Unfortunately you are the one he's taking out his anger and grief on. While it's important for you to be supportive, it's also unfair that you should be at the receiving end of his frustration. Speak to him about your concerns and explain that you're there to help him, but he needs to talk about things rather than getting angry or turning to alcohol to mute his emotions. He may also benefit from speaking to a grief counsellor. Have a look at bereavementireland.com for more information.


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