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Since 1st March, 1999
 
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Survival Strategies

My 17-year-old brother, the youngest in our family (and ours is a joint family), has been pampered beyond measure and has turned out to be rather irresponsible. Although he is a well-behaved and affectionate kid, he runs away from responsibilities. He takes all of us for granted and always wants things his way. How can we show him reason?

Name and address withheld

There is no way you can. This is how almost all younger siblings are and you should take this for granted. Instead of finding fault or just being plain envious try and embrace his flaws and you will be much happier. Even in politics, the younger blokes are more pampered. If Indira Gandhi could declare the Emergency thanks to the youngish brat Sanjay, why are you complaining? Just smile and carry on.

I am in love with two men at the same time and I love them both dearly. However, I know it will not be easy for either of them to accept this. I do not feel guilty of cheating because I know I am not cheating them. But I am always scared of losing them both. Please help.

Name and address withheld

What on earth can I do except envy you. I have felt the same way except in my case its been the right gender: women. Look there is nothing to feel guilty about as long as you don’t sleep with two men at the same time. That would be downright cheating and grossly unfair.

Imagine yourself to be Baba Ramdev. He also loves all humanity except the Congress and he’s done pretty well for himself so why should you be worried about your pretty small life. Enjoy all this while it lasts. As you grow older, you might not even love yourself.

HELP AT HAND

Alcoholics anonymous

10A, Nandan Road, Near Ganja Park, Calcutta - 25,
Ph: 2419 1174
For free help on alcoholism
E-mail: akolkata_ig03@rediffmail.com
(2pm to 6pm Mondays through Saturdays)

Al-Anon (for families and friends of alcoholics)

Ph : 8420738682
(2pm to 6 pm Mondays through Saturdays)
www.india.al-anon.alateen.org

Narcotics anonymous (Kolkata area helpline)

Ph: 9836223071; www.nakolkata.org
Email: info@nakolkata.org
Self-help group of recovering addicts

HelpAge India

1800-345-1253
Free helpline for the elderly for social, legal, economical, financial counselling and also access to government schemes and policies

Lifeline Foundation

Ph: 2463 7401/ 2463 7432
Free helpline for the depressed or suicidal (10 am to 6 pm Monday through Saturdays)

Sparsha

AE-36, Rabindra Pally, PO: Prafulla Kanan, Calcutta - 01
Ph: 2591 0334, 2591 3852, 6529, 9856
Free tele-counselling and one-on-one counselling on personal relationships and HIV/ AIDS
(10 am to 6 pm Mondays through Fridays)