Make the McKenzie Connection!

All In The Family

Direct Answer

I am 22 and the oldest of four children. I have a brother, 17, who is the second oldest. He's been in a "committed relationship" with a girl, also 17, for over two years. However, he is currently speaking on the phone with other girls and going on dates with them.

Once a school friend told my brother's girlfriend he was seeing another girl. My brother's girlfriend came to my house, took my brother to the other girl's house, and confronted them both. My brother denied everything and painted another picture for his girlfriend. She ate it up.

Needless to say, they are still together, and he is still seeing another girl. I am bothered by his lack of respect for women. I've tried to speak with him about treating women the way he would want to be treated, but my words are wasted.

I'm confused about what to do. His girlfriend has become a member of our family. She comes over all the time, and I feel guilty not telling her the truth. Should I tell her? Should I tell the other girl? Or should I stay out of it? I don't want to be like my dad's family who cover up infidelities for years.

I think I have a responsibility to all women, since I am a woman, to tell the truth. I also feel the need to teach my brother a lesson about women and how he should treat them. What do you think I should do?


Sheila, where did your brother learn this behavior? Where most people learn their behavior--from their family. Normally the advice would be to give your brother an option: either tell your girlfriend, or I will tell her. In this instance that won't work. He is willing to lie when confronted, and she is willing to believe a lie.

You want your brother to treat women better, but you are not capable of teaching him that. As long as he experiences pleasure in what he is doing, he will continue doing it. Often a man who cheats never learns the lesson, because the pleasure for him is multiple women, and there will always be women who allow him to do this.

If you tell either of his girlfriends, they may resent you, and not seek the truth about him. But the one thing telling does is to let your brother, his girlfriends, and your family know you do not approve of his behavior. Silence indicates acceptance, and you do not accept this behavior.

Go ahead and tell. But do not expect your brother to change, his girlfriends to thank you, or your parents to stand behind you. When people openly flaunt bad behavior, you damage yourself when you keep silent. Each time you speak up, you express your character. Speaking up strengthens your sense of self and makes you less vulnerable to abuse by others.

Wayne & Tamara

From The Heart

We are celebrating our 30th wedding anniversary in May and renewing our marriage vows in church. There will be a reception afterward. We would like to indicate in the invitation we would prefer donations to a charity rather than receiving gifts. What wording may we use that would not sound imposing, yet encourage guests to help others in need?

Mac and Aileen

Mac and Aileen, if you want your guests to donate to a certain charity, give them the story that leads them to that conclusion. Tell them, from your heart, why you feel passionately about the cause. Tell them what it means to you, but give them the option to give to a cause that matters to them.

In that way, all the gifts will be given in a spiritual manner that commemorates the spiritual connection between the two of you. Don't fuss about the wording. Write from the heart to connect with other hearts.


Wayne & Tamara are the authors of Cheating in a Nutshell and The Young Woman’s Guide to Older Men—available from Amazon, iTunes, and booksellers everywhere.


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