A flirtly married man, an unwanted Christmas gift and skin problems are the queries this week
There’s a lad who drifts into our social circle from time to time and he always flirts with me but I always ignore any innuendo-laden comments he makes because, despite my fancying him, I know he’s married.
He makes up numbers in our tennis club and hangs about for drinks sometimes after a game, so short of moving club I can’t avoid him – I’m worried that I’ll just go for it one night as I don’t fall for men that often.
Do I tell my mates so they can keep an eye if I get flirty or have a frank talk with him?
You have identified that this man may potentially cause you issues. Although married, he probably sees the tennis club social occasions as a chance to let loose and flirt with other women. He may know how to charm a lady, but he certainly sounds like trouble and not the type of person you should get involved with.
You risk breaking up a marriage and hurting a lot of people, even though he is approaching you.
It doesn’t seem fair that you would have to be the one to leave the tennis club, so my advice is to pay as little attention as possible to this guy’s flirting.
Change your mind-set and view him as totally out of bounds. If the opportunity arises at the right time, it may be worth having a few very honest and firm words with him.
My boyfriend bought me a really expensive bracelet for Christmas and I hate it. It’s so vulgar – but of course I have had to pretend that I adore it. Everywhere we go he now says “show such-and-such your bracelet” – my cue to hold my wrist out like it’s a paw.
He’s so chuffed with himself, but I think it just proves he doesn’t know me at all. After three years together he should have copped on that low-key elegance is what I like.
I can’t stop wearing it or pretend I lost it – it just cost too bloody much. Will I tell him I loathe it?
Exchanging gifts can be so tricky, because hurting the person’s feelings is what we all want to avoid. He obviously went to a huge amount of effort and expense to get this piece of jewellery for you, so he’s proud of his work and keen to show it off.
Although you cringe each time he tells you to show somebody your new gift, I suspect that it’s just a phase he’s going through and the novelty will soon wear off.
Telling him you actually hate his present will probably devastate him, and will also show you up to be less than honest for not telling him before and pretending to love it.
So my advice is to let him enjoy his pride at buying you this bracelet and then discreetly wear it less and less next year. Use this as a lesson for the next birthday or Christmas, and suggest that you go out together to buy each other’s gifts so you both get exactly what you want.
My skin has erupted over Christmas and I’ve acne all over my face, shoulders and neck – I’m dreading going back to school as I got teased about this in second year, but the slagging stopped after my mam got me a prescription and the problem stayed at bay for years.
I’m now in sixth year studying for my Leaving so I could do without this stress, but the girls I go to school with are so mean. Can you recommend a good camouflage make-up until I get to the doctor and the pills have a chance to work?
I’m really sorry to hear that you have been suffering with your skin. I also have very sensitive skin and need to be careful with stress and my diet, so I know how difficult it can be to suffer from problem skin.
It can destroy your self-esteem and make everyday life more difficult, as you want to avoid being seen by others when you feel low. You may also feel very vulnerable, which makes cruel comments from classmates even more hurtful.
But you really must learn to ignore mean words from others and always remember that spots are just temporary annoyances. Their cruelty will never be forgotten. My advice is to focus your energies on clearing up your skin rather than worrying what others think.
Look at ways to unwind and de-stress, such as yoga, meditation and deep breathing techniques. Remove any processed foods and sugar from your diet and replace them with whole fruit and vegetables, drink plenty of water and exercise regularly. All of these habits can help to rebalance your system.
Speak to your GP about another prescription, and I would also suggest you see a dermatologist about appropriate treatments and even what medicated make-up is available to you, as it’s best to avoid clogging your pores with your usual concealers. In a few years this teenage phase will be long forgotten.