Dear Abby: I’d rather skip husband’s family events than see his nasty brother

The man lies, makes rude comments and refuses to apologize for insulting a guest.

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DEAR ABBY: I married “Darius” two years ago. I have had problems with my brother-in-law ever since Darius and I first began dating five years ago.

From my husband’s perspective, his parents have always favored his younger brother, “Adonis.” “Anything goes” is their attitude where he is concerned. Adonis takes things without asking, lies and constantly makes disrespectful comments toward us. He was never reprimanded as a child, and now that he’s an adult (24), the sniping continues.

A few months ago, he showed up unannounced at my home and insulted a guest who was visiting at the time. (She also doesn’t care for him.) I asked him to leave to avoid making waves with her.

I think Adonis owes me an apology, but he refuses to give me a sincere one. My father-in-law thinks I should just “get over it” and says I am being ridiculous because I no longer want to attend family events if Adonis is present. Mostly the reason is I no longer want to tolerate his behavior while he’s drinking and making constant “jokes” about me.

I feel bad for my husband because we have missed out on seeing family members and enjoying ourselves at events because I don’t want to create a scene. Darius supports the way I feel, but says he can’t demand an apology from his brother. I feel if I back down now, Adonis’ behavior will continue for the rest of my life. I don’t think I should be treated this way. How should I resolve this issue? — FAMILY PROBLEM IN NEW JERSEY

DEAR FAMILY PROBLEM: I’m glad you wrote. Adonis is getting away with this because your in-laws are enabling it. Your husband should straighten his spine and inform his “little” brother he drinks too much, and he wants the sniping stopped. Your father-in-law is a mile off base. It isn’t ridiculous to want to avoid verbal abuse from a drunk, and he, too, should have a talk with Adonis. Until that happens, you are right to keep your distance. Nobody likes pain, and your brother-in-law appears unwilling to stop being a large one in a southern portion of your anatomy.

DEAR ABBY: I am a 32-year-old woman, engaged to a wonderful man. We were supposed to start trying to get pregnant, but because of the virus, we decided to put it off. I know we are making the right choice.

I had already started a journal/planner and was so excited. But now I feel myself slipping into depression. We are both lucky enough to still be working, so I’m not just sitting around dwelling on it. But when I canceled my prenatal vitamin subscription the other day, it hit me like a ton of bricks.

I know we are lucky to not have bigger woes than this right now, but I’m heartbroken. Any advice would be appreciated. — HOLDING OFF ON MOTHERHOOD

DEAR HOLDING OFF: I am sorry for your heartache. I know this is painful. It’s important that you not hold these sad feelings inside. Talk with your fiance about them and share with close friends and family. Pour your feelings into the journal you started.

Your road to motherhood may be longer than you initially thought, but it’s going to be an interesting journey. I hope you will take comfort in the knowledge that postponing your pregnancy was a decision you and your fiance made for the right reasons and didn’t take lightly.

Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.

Abby shares more than 100 of her favorite recipes in two booklets: “Abby’s Favorite Recipes” and “More Favorite Recipes by Dear Abby.” Send your name and mailing address, plus check or money order for $16 (U.S. funds), to: Dear Abby, Cookbooklet Set, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Shipping and handling are included in the price.)

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