TV’s Steph and Dom Parker, 53 and 55, sign on them 22 years of marriage to resolve your relationship problems. . .
Ask: I have a terrible dilemma. My husband and I have a close group of friends. We are all in our late 40s and many of us have known each other since we were in school.
Recently my husband learned that the husband of one of the women in this group is having an affair – with my younger sister.
I felt nauseous when I found out. My sister has always been a bit of a loose cannon, but this feels like a personal betrayal.
An anonymous reader asked Steph and Dom Parker of British TV for advice to discover that her husband’s boyfriend is having an affair with her sister (image in file)
Last year she went through an awkward divorce and to help her get over it, I started inviting her to social functions with my friends.
She has always been very beautiful, but recently she has become slim and bought new clothes. . .
It’s such a mess. I’m changing from wanting to go into all firearms, hoping it will just hiss and put my head in the sand forever.
STEPH SAYS: First things first. You have to give yourself some slack. You feel awful, but try to remember that you have been very unfairly put in this position by both parties, not just your sister.
Something threatening your friendship group is hard to navigate – and a lot worse when your sister is the threat!
In my opinion she behaved terribly. Nevertheless, now you have to be the big sister: your family is your family, whether you like it or not.
You may love your friends very much, but they are not your blood. Your sister will always be in your life and she should be the main focus here.
Ask her to come over, then put her down and point out in detail the very real damage being done.
She’s probably having a good time, enjoying clandestine encounters and thinking that no one will find out and that nothing terrible will happen.
Steph (pictured, with Dom) advised the reader to give her sister 48 hours to end the affair, or to do it herself
In reality, she may be breaking up with a marriage and a family. Tell her, in no uncertain terms, what will happen when the matter becomes public knowledge. The romance will disappear. The excitement will evaporate in a puff of guilt and accusation.
His marriage will likely be over. And she is removed from the social group. This is not a love story, it is an ego trip.
Then tell her to end the affair. Give her 48 hours – or you’ll do it for her.
If she refuses, call the other party. Meet him and your sister together – and treat them the same way you would anyone who betrayed you or their wife. Again, give them 48 hours to end their relationship or you will. Remember this is the right thing to do. They put you at the center of this, so you have to act.
Give her 48 hours to end it, or you will
It is your duty to lead your sister away from the mess she is in.
I’m sure you feel responsible for inviting her into your group – and she repayed you in an unforgivable way.
You can repair the damage to your relationship over time. The urgent issue now puts an end to the affair. This takes courage – but in retrospect, you will know that you did everything you could for everyone involved.
The woman may never forgive you for bringing your sister into her life, but you didn’t create the affair and you can’t be held responsible for it.
What you can be held responsible for is the way you behave now. Nip this in the bud immediately. Be brave, courageous and very clear. It’s time to do the right thing – today.
I wish you the best of luck and hope you can forgive the couple in time.
Dom (pictured) advised the reader to put herself in the position of her friend and imagine how she would feel about the situation
DOM SAYS: You poor, poor thing. I am so sorry that you were put in this awful situation by two very selfish and inconsiderate people. It seems that wedding vows made before God are pretty worthless in these modern times, which is terribly sad.
Your problem is multifaceted. On the one hand, there’s the husband’s unfaithfulness – and on the other, your sister’s stupidity to get into your social group and let it explode.
This would be bad enough if you ‘just’ knew your boyfriend’s husband was having an affair, but the fact that it’s with your sister makes things worse.
I’m sorry to say, I can’t really see a way this will turn out right.
Of course, when people are having affairs, there is always the possibility that they have really fallen deeply in love. In those cases, support must be provided. But it seems that is not the case. You say in your longer letter that the guy is shape, so it’s likely he risked his arm – and your sister, who comes back and needs attention, fell in.
Do the right thing and tell your friend
The problem is other people find out. Let’s face it, you and your husband know, and if others aren’t there yet, soon they will be. Your sister will chat or she will be noticed.
What you need to do is put yourself in the position of your friend and imagine how you would feel if you found out a friend knew but didn’t tell you. She’ll be distraught – and probably convinced you laughed behind her back.
So I’m afraid you have to do the decent thing.
But I also think you need proof first. Then you should talk to your girlfriend and tell her what’s going on. If you don’t, you will lose the friendship. To be fair, I think you’ll probably lose it anyway, but you have to do the right thing anyway.
Then you have the absolute right to tell your sister what you think of her behavior. She has acted in an incredibly selfish way, clinging to straws without thinking about the chaos she will cause. You’re absolutely right when you’re furious – and she should know that too.
One last, but very important point. Please remember that this is not your fault. Your sister’s actions have destroyed the lives of many. Of course, the poor woman is the main victim, but you, your husband, and your wider group of friends are likely to suffer too.
You are not responsible for that. All you can do now is continue to act like the decent person you are – and be there for your girlfriend when she needs you.
Do you have a question? you would like steph and Stupid to address, write to: stephandiness @dailymail.co.uk