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My sister takes advantage of my help

DearBunmi,

Some years ago, my sister’s husband left her with three children to move in with his mistress. She was so devastated that I promised I’d help by giving her a lot of support. But now I have a new man who I’m very interested in, yet my sister still expects me to be constantly at her beck and call. I need my life back,but how can I tell her?

Laura, by e-mail.

Dear Laura,

You made a promise to your sister when she was vulnerable – so you need to stand by that. You can’t simply ignore that sort of commitment when it suits you.

That said, your sister should understand that your new relationship means you need to put more energy in that direction.

Explain this to her and negotiate so that she gets regular care for her kids as you’re not prepared to give up every evening or weekend. Her neighbours could help and there are quite a number of daycare centres. If you sit down and talk this through with her, you’ll both be able to arrive at an amicable position.


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