Wednesday 30 December 2015


Reader Mari has had a nightmare Christmas; can Skye Tanberry offer any good advice in this week's problem page dilemma?

Mari says:
I have not had a good Christmas, actually I have had the worst time ever. Last year my mum and I went to live with Mum's boyfriend, Ben (not his real name). He seemed really nice and cared about us but this Christmas everything has fallen apart, there was a huge fight on Christmas night and it was not just shouting but hitting. I tried to stop them and Ben shoved me and I really hurt my arm. The next day Mum said it was just an accident and that the row didn't mean anything, but Ben has been so moody I am actually scared of him now. I do not want us to live with him any more and I am frightened of what 2016 will bring.

Skye says:
I understand your worry. It's only natural to be wary of someone who has hurt both you and your mum. We helped Lawrie and his family in a similar situation, but Lawrie's mum took a while to find the courage to leave her partner and actually accept help, and you may need to wait until your mum is feeling strong enough to make a break from Ben. If his mood has darkened, hopefully this will happen faster than you think. Let your mum know how anxious you are feeling. Meanwhile, tell a trusted teacher and get some support while things are difficult at home… and if anything like this happens again, stay out of the fight but instead make a quiet call for help from friends, family or the police. Good luck, and stay strong.

Cathy says:
Mari's situation is very upsetting, but help is out there… talking to a teacher to get some practical help should certainly help. Skye's advice is good, but what would YOU add to her suggestions? COMMENT BELOW to have your say.

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