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'I can't stand my brother...'

Dear Diana,
I really do not know how to handle my brother. He is the black sheep of the family. He is eight years older than me, but shirks responsibilities. He is a college dropout and has anger management issues. My brother has a habit of flaring up on every issue. Once he created a scene on the road and we had an audience. I was so embarrassed. I just can't stand him. He has been really mean to me and disrespectful to my parents. How do I deal with him? He makes my life hard, especially when I have parents who have given up on him. I alone know how I run the house, look after my parents, my wife and daughter. He was married, but his wife left him within eight months. How do I knock sense into him?
— Taksheel

Illustration/Amit Bandre
Illustration/Amit Bandre 

Dear Taksheel,
It appears that your brother has been having his way and is used to screaming and shouting everyone down. This is because you have allowed him to shirk responsibility. It is time you told your parents that you alone cannot do everything. If he is staying with you, he has to contribute his bit. Just because he flares up for no rhyme and reason, the rest prefer to stay clear from him. You need to take a stand and tell him exactly how you feel. You need to delegate some responsibilities to him for the running the household. For starters, he needs to control his temper. It is strange that your parents have turned a blind eye to the happenings in the house. They need to tell him in no uncertain terms that he cannot behave in this manner. He may be elder to you, so out of respect you may not tell him, but he needs to be told that he cannot get away with it. You need to stop supporting him. He knows you are there for him, so that has made him a good-for-nothing.

Diana will solve it!
Write to Diana at diana@mid-day.com, or fax her on 24112009. You can also post letters to Dear Diana, Mid Day, Peninsula Centre, Dr S S Rao Road, opp Mahatma Gandhi Hospital, Parel, Mumbai 400012

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