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Dear Rosanna: I'm getting close to husband's pal


Rosanna Davison

Reader: I've become really close to my husband's friend in the last few months. He lost his job and is single so we started inviting him around for dinner. Eventually he popped over one day for lunch when my husband was at work and although neither of us have said anything it's perfectly obvious that there is a lot of sexual tension between us.

We have wonderful chats about everything - my hopes and dreams about going back to work now that the kids are at school and eventually moving to a better house, closer to town.

My husband is so tired when he comes home he just eats, plays with the kids for a while and then collapses into bed - he also travels a lot for his work.

I know something is about to happen and it's up to me to stop it but I keep picturing myself in the arms of this other man and wonder if it's where I really belong?

aYou're approaching very dangerous territory here, and if you do act on your feelings then a lot of people will get hurt. Your husband's friend will also be committing a terrible act of betrayal. It already sounds to me that its gone too far by him calling in for lunch without your husband being present.

Rosanna: You were being very kind by asking him over when he found himself unemployed, and remember that he has all this time on his hands to spend listening to you because he's single and jobless.

If he was your partner and was working full time as your husband does, then things would be different.

Relationships are rarely 100pc perfect and need to be worked on constantly. My strong advice is to stop inviting this man over and create some distance between you and him.

It sounds to me that you really need to focus on spending quality time with your husband and even try to encourage him to work less and give more time to you.

You need somebody there to give you their time and support, and to listen to you. You need to work on your current relationship.

Reader: I share a bedroom with my brother and it's starting to feel awkward as I'm a 13-year-old girl and he's seven - I really want to have my own room and privacy but my parents worry that my little brother hates to sleep alone.

I have also started secondary school and need some quiet to do my homework but Mam says I can use the dining room when I bring this up. It's just the two of us kids and there is a spare box room that dad uses for his office right now - but he works in an office in town.

I am starting to hate being in the house and can't get them to understand how unfair it is.

Rosanna: I can understand your parents' position as they want to protect their youngest and make him feel safe at night, but you're a young teenager and you definitely do need a bit of space to call your own. I think the best way to approach this is to keep on bringing up the subject with your parents until they do understand your frustration.

Explain that you're really not happy and it will affect your schoolwork. It's also good for your brother to learn to sleep alone at night, he will have to eventually and your parents can leave the door open and a hall light on or a night light in his room if he's scared of the dark.

You're only going to crave more and more independence and freedom as you get older, so now is the time to start to explore it. You can't be treated as a child forever.

Reader: My colleague seems to be very fond of smelly foods - she comes in every morning stinking of garlic.

Then at a quarter to one every day she pops off to the kitchen to microwave the left overs and eats them at her desk, followed by a packet of crisps.

On top of all this she doesn't seem to wash all that often - herself or her clothes. I am not the only person in the office to comment on the fruity smell.

My supervisor shrugged when I complained and said he wasn't getting involved - which is all very well for him as he has his own office.

Rosanna: This is obviously a delicate situation to approach as you could so easily cause huge hurt and offence to your colleague. But you clearly can't continue to work and be productive in an environment that you're unhappy with.

I feel that you should involve your management here as trying to solve it yourself will cast you as the bad guy.

If you have a HR manager or another authority figure besides your supervisor explain the situation and how it is affecting your ability to do your job to them.

You may want to suggest a plan for the entire office. You could involve everybody in a 'fresh office air' scheme, whereby nobody brings in smelly food and all employees ensure that they're smelling clean and fresh everyday.

Make it seem like a fun and new project for everybody, but ensure that they know it needs to be done.