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From the kitchen table

From the kitchen table

When a relationship crumbles, there’s bound to be ‘Days Like This!’

Our columnist, impressed by the way former Miss Ireland Michelle Rocca has dealt with renewed publicity about her life with Van Morrison, has no doubt that Ms. Rocca will emerge from this recent public setback smelling of roses…

Nothing kills a relationship quicker than the bilious odour of betrayal. Nothing shakes your confidence more than the realisation that you can no longer trust the person you once most admired, cherished, protected and loved in this world…believe me readers, it was nearly a decade ago but I’ve been there; and so that is why this week my heart went out to former Miss Ireland, former model, former TV presenter and now it appears, former wife of singer Van Morrison, Michelle Rocca.

  You see, Michelle had been embroiled in a very public court battle involving the alleged sea view at her beautiful Dalkey home; apparently neighbours had redeveloped, blocking her vista and her ‘family’s right to privacy,’ with Michelle even going so far as to allegedly maintain – according to the Sunday Independent – that when Van the Man, ‘gets out of his car he wants to be able to walk to the hall door without feeling he was being overlooked.’ So far, so reasonable, one might assume. We all have a right to privacy.   

  However this is where the story takes an ironic twist because the notoriously discreet, reserved and, according to some hacks, ‘grumpy and dour’ Van, whom by the way has claimed his famous prickly demeanour is all a ‘myth,’ reportedly adding that journalists who brand him in this way are ‘lazy’ and ‘need a sense of humour,’ – ooh, really, so, is this your fun side Van? – poured cold water on his missus’ claims by issuing a press release stating that not only did he ‘not live’ at the house, but that in fact, ‘he and Michelle have been legally separated since 2013,’ Ouch! As we say on the not so salubrious but equally fabulous or ‘fablis’ Northside of Dublin, ‘Morto for ya Michelle.’

  However, and despite reports this week that Michelle ‘felt betrayed,’ and rightly so, this strong woman maintained her dignity and, in a swift operation in damage control, immediately withdrew the case; a case, which I might add had somehow morphed from a private affair into a public three-ringed extravaganza about the over-indulged rich folk living life in the unspoilt urban oasis that is the mythological, matchless and often fabled seaside town of Dalkey.

  Look, I don’t know about you readers, but I would find it impossible to swallow when someone whom you have loved and stood by for many years, someone whose life and privacy you’ve feverishly protected would allegedly embarrass you and make such a shocking and public statement apparently without prior warning; but that’s just me and I know that it can happen, but, regarding the Rocca-Morrisons, I’m sure all parties involved have their own reasons for their alleged actions. Remember, we are not playing the blame game here; a family’s life is under the spotlight.

  However, what I do know is how you deal with these matters says an awful lot about your self-control and your strength of character and while I admire Michelle Morrison for stopping proceedings, opting instead to put up and shut up, I do equally admire her for  giving her unswerving loyalty to her former husband and totally understand that she would have the right to expect the same consideration in return; all wives do; and I fully sympathise with her if she may be feeling the sting of betrayal. However, I would add here that Van – whom I have never interviewed nor am I a fan of his music but whose talent I respect, stood by his wife – then his girlfriend – when she went to the High Court in order to seek damages arising from a failed relationship with Cathal Ryan, whereby an alleged assault took place at a birthday party…yes, yes, it reads  like a plot from ‘Desperate Housewives’ – but the point is at one time there was clearly a lot of love, loyalty and mutual respect between this couple; which leads to the question, at which point did it all go so horribly and publicly wrong?

  Was it when, according to the Sunday Independent – ‘Van told her (Michelle) that it would be a conflict of interest if she continued writing for the newspaper so she stopped.’  Or was it when the couple were engaged to be married and Michelle ‘had a few glasses of champagne with a friend in his hotel room and Van got annoyed, so she didn’t touch a drop of alcohol after that. She became sensible and stopped going to parties and withdrew from the social scene and dedicated her life to Van.’ Who knows?

  The fact is that there are lot of people in relationships where one or the other has a massive ego, so huge in fact, it can constantly require validation; and while most of us would find it exhausting, draining and painfully boring to be continuously on our guard around someone who professes to love us yet demands we live our lives existing like a retired nun, some people actually manage to fulfil their life’s purpose by gaining a kind of high, or a euphoria of sorts from being or from indeed, serving,  in that special position. And, while I cannot for the life of me find anything about the portly so-called ‘rock star’ aesthetically pleasing in any way, it’s clear that at one stage (and possibly even now, who knows?) he sent a tingle up a young and impressionable Michelle’s thigh that went straight to her, ahem, own personal home entertainment centre rendering her powerless under his commanding spell and possibly leading to her almost reclusive lifestyle.

  I have no doubt Michelle will emerge from this recent public setback smelling of roses. After all she is clearly still a beautiful woman, she is, at 54, still very much in her prime, she’s a motivational teacher with a strong interest in Psychology and a Masters in Philosophy and History; meaning she’s an intelligent individual, thus leading me to ask why is it then that it seems the more we women accomplish on a personal level, the more some of us have to sacrifice in order to please those we love?

  Bear this in mind girls; sometimes certain relationships that seem right at the beginning, only serve to poison and enslave us years later. Remember marriage is an agreement to ‘love’ each other and not to constantly be ‘in love’ with each other. Marriage is a structure of security and support and when that’s threatened there’s a major danger to our sanctuary and, when this happens, there comes a time in life when we have to ask ourselves – as I once did many years ago – are we actually living the dream or just doing time in the nightmare?

  Remember girls, we no longer live in a time where we have to lay down in the marital bed, throw back our heads and shake and shiver with spurious expressions of Grammy award winning orgasmic joy! Take a leaf out of Michelle’s and all those other strong women’s  books, go educate yourselves, be your own woman and walk that difficult line out of that stifling relationship with your head held high and your dignity firmly intact.

I wish the Rocca-Morrison family the very best for the future.

It is unusual: Sir Tom so hurtful about the woman he loves

He may be a superstar and an icon to millions of fans, but notorious womaniser Tom Jones, on the eve of the launch of his autobiography, has made undignified comments about his ill wife in public which have drawn the ire of our columnist…

Last week, as Irish mental health charities and the World Health Organisation (WHO) publicised a range of activities and hosted events around the country promoting Mental Health Week, with this year’s theme being ‘Dignity in Mental Health’, I was glad nobody asked old fogey and 60’s icon Tom Jones to be their inspirational spokesperson; especially given his alleged negative, and in my opinion, extremely undignified, comments about his wife of nearly sixty years, Linda Jones.

  You see Linda, according to quotes attributed to her aging and definitely not so sexy bomb of a hubby, “has had a depression since she was young,” and has “let herself go,” and “lost her spark,”, with Jones allegedly adding “she doesn’t look like she did, I don’t look like I did either, but I try my best.” Wow, bless your efforts Tom, and what a gleeful little pensioner you are; quick, someone hand him his mirth control pills please.

  Now look readers, if these comments attributed to Jones are true, this pair may well be suited to each other; aesthetically speaking of course; I mean, after all, he has a fortune and she, ahem…has four chins; something which I might add, she is perfectly entitled to have instead of resorting to the extent of lifting, pulling and tucking of the kind undertaken by her plastic-fantastic hubby who has spoken openly in the past about his eyes, nose and chin jobs, leading me to think that perhaps now it’s time to have his motor mouth altered, because these days, when it comes to criticising his darling wife, his gigantic gob appears to be so rarely shut, planes could mistake it for a landing strip.

  Mrs Jones, now reportedly living her life as ‘a virtual recluse,’ appears to have put up with quite a lot of her husband’s inexcusable and incredibly disloyal behaviour when he headed for the bright lights while she stayed behind to keep the home fires burning and raise their only son during his glory days. If the knicker magnet’s admission of having slept with “250 women a year,” at the height of his fame is to believed, I have to ask, is it any wonder the poor woman is unhappy?

  What a crass, insensitive and horrible thing for any husband to say that his wife had “let  herself go” –even in a private conversation – a comment which, by the way, could be construed as emotionally abusive behaviour. However, for a man to utter such tripe on such a public platform, as in to effectively ‘ugly shame’ the mother of their child, the woman they profess to love, is both brutish and savage behaviour.

  I’ll be honest and say that, until I read reports about the boyo’s alleged verbal attack on his ill wife, I was in fact a minor fan. In my opinion the Welsh crooner has managed to constantly, ahem, swing the lead and  reinvent himself, always staying hip and relevant; however for anyone to use their fame to emotionally throttle a loved one, to, in some way, manipulate their depressive illness, and, it appears in his opinion, their waning attractiveness, as an apparent attempt to promote an autobiography, (Jones’ latest tome, ‘Over The Top and Back Again,’ ghost written by Giles Smith and which Jones reportedly admits he has only ‘read fifty per cent,’ of), as a smokescreen for their appalling infidelity is, wounding at best, repulsive in the least.

  Last week’s reported vile statements made me wonder if this Knight of the Realm, Sir Tom, has tricked himself into believing that his bad behaviour and infidelity had played absolutely no part in his poor wife’s decline down through the decades; the very same woman who seems to have sacrificed so much, including her positive mental state, on the altar of her husband’s phenomenal success.

  And I do understand that life on the road must have been difficult for poor, put-upon Tom, what with the girlos sniffing around him like they were ravenous dogs and he was an open tin of puppy chow. However, on the other hand, you see readers, it’s my belief that very often those who become intoxicated by their own importance tend to forget that one special person who will still remain by their side as a constant, loyal presence once their dubious spark begins to dim.

  We all bear responsibilities in life, one of those being that we should cherish the people we love and in turn, feel cherished by them. Now I’m not saying you should enjoy every single second you spend in their company; God no, that would be weird and slightly abnormal; but for a successful man who has literally gone from the Valleys to Vegas, Jones appears to have learned very little about gentlemanly behaviour along the way; and, despite the fact he has said he “still loves Linda,” (well big whoop!), his alleged remarks are disrespectful and undignified not just to his wife, but to women in general.

  Mind you Jones does credit Linda as being “strong,” and if what he is quoted as saying about her looks is true, she’d not only need to be a strong person, she’d also need to have a strong stomach in order to swallow all that boorish bull he’s laying on, when, in an attempt to recover from the media backlash, he told the Daily Mail his affairs were just “Part of life. Everything I’ve done is a part of life. You can’t cry over spilt milk and nobody got hurt. And my wife is still with me.” Wow, somebody always gets hurt when cheating occurs and while we’re at it, can I ask, where do you get your misshapen take on fidelity Sir Tom…Adultery Barn?

  Here’s a thought, when your singing career comes to an end, why don’t you type up all those cock-a-hoop little insights for us laydeez; you know, the ones who’ve lost our spark and email them to The Smart Ass Digest; I’m sure we’d all love advice from a skilled seducer like your good self…NOT!

Why it’s important to both empower and educate ourselves about breast cancer

Recalling her own past health concern experiences and moved just now by the courage of a best-selling author, our columnist has a timely reminder to readers during Breast Cancer Awareness Month of the importance of being breast aware…

When I heard best-selling author Emma Hannigan, or as I like to call her, ‘the matron saint of modern women,’ had been diagnosed with cancer for the tenth time this week…yes, you read it correctly, the tenth time, I immediately contacted her to show my solidarity and offer her any support that I could possibly give. However, this tough lady, who, despite her ordeal down through the years, still continues to ooze positivity, beauty and strength as well as display the most amazing, mind-blowing resilience that I have ever witnessed. She actually tut-tutted her recent diagnosis with a “sure I’ve had this type of stuff before.” You’ve guessed it, Emma doesn’t do self-pity.

  While I’ve never actually met Emma face to face, we have chatted extensively over the ‘phone, swapped war stories and exchanged emails; but it has to be said, following each encounter, this woman’s courage renders me speechless, awestruck and feeling incredibly humbled by the way she refuses to allow the big ‘C’ define her.

  You see for Emma, a talented best-selling author, wife and mother of two teenagers, cancer just seems to hang around like an unwanted memory that stubbornly refuses to die. A haunting presence, that, every so often, just as she gets the ‘all clear,’ identical to the enveloping fog we’ve all experienced over the past week in Roscommon. Cancer raises its ugly head, and, unfelt, unseen, undetected, save for a routine scan, like some dastardly evil manifestation, storms back to enshroud its casualty like a menacing spectre.

  As is the case for many Irish women, Emma carries the BRCA1 gene, meaning she is predisposed to cancer and, as she told me,  rather than live in fear, in 2006, she decided to take evasive action and underwent a bi-lateral mastectomy (both breasts removed) and a bi-lateral oophorectomy (both ovaries removed). Incredibly, this woman did everything she could possibly do to prevent cancer from striking. However, just four months following her ‘preventative’ surgery, she contracted cancer, telling me, “it’s been in my head, my neck and across my chest.” Now this scared the bejaysus out of me because, as I’ve shared previously, both sides of my family are affected by cancer; and of course I went through a particularly scary time in 2012 when, one Thursday, following a routine cervical smear and an ovarian scan, my surgeon sat me down to tell me I needed a total abdominal radical hysterectomy…”like, next Tuesday.” I was shocked, but having the surgery was a no-brainer; I had a ticking time bomb inside me and I wanted rid. ASAP!

  However, two weeks post-surgery, a routine mammogram – been having them annually since my 30’s due to the family’s dodgy genes – found ‘breast abnormalities,’ and so, before my hysterectomy stitches had time to dissolve, I was sent to another hospital for a breast scan and a biopsy and, so convinced was the surgeon she’d have to operate, a titanium clip was shot into my right boob in an ‘X’ marks the spot type of thingy.

  I can tell you all sorts of emotions went through my head and I was not nearly as brave as Emma. Besides, as I told her, no way could I have pulled off the Right Said Fred look as fabulously as she had. Also I felt the support network was non-existent at the hospital I attended, and, if I hadn’t been someone who researches, asks questions and had the wherewithal to ring the breast cancer helpline and contact a journalist friend who’d survived breast cancer while I waited for an inexcusable ten whole days for my results, then I believe I could possibly have dropped dead with the fear and the dread.

  You see the hospital in question –a major Dublin one – treated me like a statistic rather than an individual. In short, their consideration of me was definitely not person-centred, rather one size fits all – and that’s just not good enough for any fearful patient. I will add that my fabulous, at that time new doctor here in Roscommon, Barry Cosgrove, was a great support.

  Thank God, and the angels who answered my prayers, my ‘abnormalities’ were benign; nothing to worry about, and I’ve been discharged into the breast check programme for monitoring. Also, only last month, having undergone gruelling six-monthly, then annual, vault smears to detect any possible residual cells, I received the ‘all clear’ following my hysterectomy. Elation does not even come close to describing my feelings.

  You see readers, when faced with the possibility of a life-threatening situation, it’s important to harness your emotions and to try and remain positive. Easier said than done, I know, because I was not only anxious, I was absolutely petrified, and, bloody big drama queen that I am, became convinced I was going to die. I was nowhere as brave or as calm as Emma, and I feel now, part of that was because the hospital didn’t take the time to counsel me or discuss with me what may, or indeed, to put a positive spin on things, what may not, happen; they just fobbed me off with “We’ll discuss it in 10 days’ time when your results come back,” leaving me shocked, vulnerable and responsible for sourcing my own support. Wholly unacceptable!

  So ladies (and gents) October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, please log onto www.breastcancerireland.com – they’re an amazing charity – and download their free app to find out how to check your breasts and help them aim to transform breast cancer into a treatable illness; and if you’re worried or have questions, call them on PH: 1800 940 025. Remember, breast cancer will affect one in every twelve women in Ireland, and even though it’s important to keep in mind that not all ‘abnormalities’ are cancerous, women and their families need understanding and support while waiting on those results.  

  There’s also a wonderful Roscommon Cancer Care Service in Vita House beside this newspaper’s office, so give them a call if you need help and reassurance on PH: 090-6625898.

  I know that the unstoppable Emma Hannigan is going to be okay; she’s an amazingly strong, positive, talented woman who has all the essentials for a vibrant, full and wonderful life bubbling within her and she will never allow anything to extinguish that light. I wish her every happiness, health and success and I respect her enormously. Check Emma out at www.emmahannigan.com

On the road to nowhere: Why I’m not happy with this version of ‘Murphy’s Law’!

My advice to Junior Minister Murphy is next time he has a job vacancy, why not opt to employ a ‘failed PR guru;’ he certainly appears to need someone to attach a bit of common sense, decency and spin to his skewed air of entitlement…

Another week, another scandal; this time fresh and disgraceful allegations regarding one of our Government Ministers’ outrageous abuse of privilege and power came to light.   

  Well readers, I’m sure you’ve heard the reports that ‘on duty’ members of An Garda Síochána drove Junior Minister Dara Murphy 200km from Cork to Dublin Airport so he could catch a flight for a meeting he had in Brussels after his chauffeur-driven car broke down. Er, just wondering Minister, was this ‘chauffeur,’ the very same ‘failed politician,’ you reportedly employed as ‘a €630 per week’ taxpayer-paid driver, by any chance? Surely for that amount you could have got someone with enough basic mechanical knowledge to get the car serviced?

  Also readers, earlier in the year, you may remember reports emerged that Mr Murphy had, in grand style, requested the use of the government jet, at a cost of €30,000, to fly home from Latvia so he could vote in the marriage equality referendum. Aah, bless his patriotic little soul.

  Now there are conflicting reports surrounding this incident, as, according to the Irish Independent, ‘The Star reports comments from the Minister’s spokesperson that the help was offered – however the Irish Examiner reports the Minister as telling the paper he asked Fermoy garda station to send help as it was an ‘emergency’.’

  However, personally I don’t give a rat’s whotsit whether this exclusive and free taxi service, on behalf of taxpayers and provided by our hard-working boys and girls in blue, was ‘offered’ or ‘requested,’ I just care that it happened at all.

  In fact I was incandescent with disbelief given the current climate of closed garda stations with the onset being the incredible rise in rural crime where vulnerable Irish citizens, nay, taxpayers, are being threatened, robbed and in some cases beaten to a pulp in their own homes…and why? Because, due to this Government’s closure of 140 Garda stations, rural Ireland is going virtually unprotected and unpoliced while our lovely and highly professional under-staffed and over-stressed Gardaí are being forced to work as taxi hacks for a man who is acting like he is some manner of a Demi God but who clearly cannot manage his finances if, on a Junior Minister’s salary, he was unable to cough up the fee for a private taxi service.

  I raise this point given the reported claim made by taxi man Gerdy Murphy that “the Minister turned down the offer (of a taxi to the airport) because he was concerned that he was facing a taxi bill of €300-€350.” A claim which, I must add was denied by the Minister, however Gerdy did insist, “there was a taxi available and it was turned down when the cost was mentioned.” A case of he says/he says…I’ll let readers arrive at their own conclusions.

  Now while I do know there is a Government protocol in place, as does Mr Demi God Junior Minister, whereby he could have ‘contacted the Gardaí for assistance’ – and here is the clincher folks – ‘as a last resort,’ i.e. an emergency – the breaking down of a chauffeur driven car is not, in my opinion, one of those times.

  So, in the event that Junior Minister Dara Murphy doesn’t understand exactly what does constitute an emergency, let me outline it for you Sir…an emergency is a situation whereby there is an immediate risk to your health or your life, to your property or to your environment. Kinda like, oh, let’s just say for example, you’re a genteel, frail, vulnerable,  petrified elderly lady, a precious voter, living alone in rural Ireland, you’ve locked up for the night, popped your teeth into a glass of Steradent and you’re slipping into your flannelette nightie when suddenly you hear an unexpected noise; terrifyingly, you realise that the last remnants of your safety, security and dignity are about to be violated, stolen from you; snatched in the echoing sound of your bedroom door  being viciously kicked in; suddenly forcing you, in your autumn years, to shed any dreams you had of living out a quiet, safe and peaceful life in your own home like a serpent’s skin. You know instinctively that dialling 999 is futile, firstly because the signal in your area is sxxte, secondly, who the hell is going to come to your aid because the local cop shop with the friendly and caring Gardaí has long since lain deserted, their excellent, reassuring presence phased out and finally shut down altogether by those in charge of your welfare. That Minister, for your information, constitutes an EMERGENCY!

  The fact that this able-bodied Minister and Cork North Central TD, when questioned by reporters, and, I suppose, sensing that blood was in the water, still defiantly claims he was left ‘stranded’ on the side of the road, and blindly insists he “ had to make the call on the night,” makes me think he is possibly a deluded man who needs to be told that just because he has been democratically elected to office, he cannot smugly waltz through his privileged  life on pedestals specifically set for his own purpose. He also needs to be told that rural dwellers in his Cork constituency (and this goes for those politicians representing County Roscommon who expect a vote from constituents in isolated areas) cannot and will not be forced to simply get on with it and bear the brunt of the loss of their properties and dreams with a certain dignified grace and stoicism because it is just not good enough.

  Rural Ireland and its people will not just curl in on itself like startled snails and yield to the scum of the earth who feel it is their right to invade homes and take what they want, when they want, and to hell with the human and financial cost. Rural Ireland and its people will not be abandoned on society’s doorstep; and most certainly we will not bow down to a Government who has, in effect, ignored its citizens’ basic needs by closing down essential Garda services and instead taken to effectively shooting its wounded.

  My advice to Junior Minister Murphy is next time he has a job vacancy, why not opt to employ a ‘failed PR guru;’ he certainly appears to need someone to attach a bit of common sense, decency and spin to his skewed air of entitlement and sorry ass excuses.


Get Shorty; I did! But beware, my hair-raising exploits are not for everyone!

Having only recently ‘moved over to Blondesville,’ our columnist has now changed her hair dramatically by taking a ‘short cut’ – after much soul-searching, she finally told her stylist to sharpen her scissors and get cropping, while ordering a coffee with a side order of valium (for our columnist, not the stylist)….read on…

May I take this timely opportunity to apologise to all you lovely, luscious blondes for abandoning you and reverting back to my natural brunette barnet? Thanks; appreciate it. Now I know I only moved over to Blondesville a short while ago, but I was beginning to look like a cross between an aging cheerleader-in-chief and Satan’s Mistress, and so it just had to go.

  I don’t know readers, maybe it’s my hormones;  my fiery mood swings are legendary in the People’s Republic of the Kerins’ gaff – and recently I decided a blonde, flowing mane just didn’t quite tone in with the aul hot flushes – and made a decision to have it all chopped off.

  Eh, now, relax the kacks there, I didn’t quite emulate screw-up fairy Twitney Spears and take a razor to it; it’s not military short but it is Pixie short. Mind you, I did do endless amounts of research before I took the plunge. In fact, it’s probably fair to say, more examination, scrutiny, exploration, in-depth analysis, soul-searching and polling of pi%&ed off friends through texts and Facebook messages and stalking family members through ‘phone calls went into my decision to have my long locks cropped into a more fashionable Pixie style than actually went into the wording of the marriage equality referendum. I kid you not!

  I even pestered and harassed he-who-nearly-lost-the-will-to-live as to what he thought about my tonsorial plight; ya know, just to pretend he actually had a say in the matter and got the poor man’s stock reply when discussing the thorny subject that had become my ‘will I, won’t I, dilemma?’ which is always a cautious, “what answer would you like me to give you darling?” But the deed is now done and he says he loves it…perhaps he’s too afraid to say otherwise? Naah.

  You see – and female readers will agree with me here, I hope – life is an endless struggle for us girlies; full of frustrations and challenges. Life not only begins at 40, ok 50; it also begins to show at 50 but eventually you manage to find a hairstylist you can trust. Mine is a wonderful local girl who cannot only whip up a colour to complement those dark roots and liver spots; she can also do a snazzy, stylish, uber-chic Pixie cut to boot.

  I mean, don’t get me wrong, I loved the long blonde do; I did. However the heavy bleaching with the visible root growth, the twenty  minutes of tedium it took to work the shampoo and conditioner followed by the intense hot oil treatments through it; the knots, Oh God the knots, the hour it took to section and blow dry it, the heated rollers, the GHD, the smell of burning hair and, having done all of that, the resorting to tying it up into a ponytail or an old-fashioned Gibson Girl bun with the finished result making me look like an aging, peroxide-dependent, power puff canary; a fact that occurred to me one day when I took a long, hard look at myself and my over-processed hair in the mirror and agreed that the hooker hairdo, dragged through a weed whacker finesse I’d been sporting for too long, had now  passed its glory days and the cost of maintaining it was, like my former waist-length lank locks, growing by the month. 

  “Why don’t you go for a nice bob,” texted my hair stylist No 1 daughter. “Yes mam, a nice bob,” echoed No 2 adding, unnecessarily I thought, “sure you’re too small for such a big mad head of hair and the blonde is just aging you.” The ‘too small’ I could understand, I’m merely 5” to her 5’ 10” frame, but I could have done without the catty ‘aging’ remark.

  And so, armed with all my courage, I took myself off to the salon and told my stylist to chop it off! Now please don’t think I’m vain or suffering from delusions of adequacy here, because I’m not. Like most women of a certain age, I often tend to feel decidedly the opposite,  inadequate, and my hair had become my security blanket, and as I felt my stylist, who’d asked me several times if I was “absolutely sure?’ cut off more than a foot of hair with a heavy plop and hold it up for me to see, even popping it into a paper bag for me to take home as a trophy, I went deathly pale, gasped out loud, put my hand over my mouth, and nearly had a panic attack.

  “Get a bob, you’ve enough left for a nice bob,” she hurriedly advised and that advice is what made me stop dead in my tracks. Why did everyone want me to get a ‘nice bob?’ I mean, I know I’m no spring chicken girls, but I’m hardly sitting in God’s waiting room now am I, so why would I opt for the ‘safe, sensible mammy bob option,’ as I call it. 

  Now that is no disrespect to those lovely ladies (and men) who wear their hair in a bob, I’m sure it’s fab on you and you rock it, but you see, it’s not for me. I’m an all or nothing loony; besides, a bob would just make me look like a forehead with teeth and so I decided not to have the ‘official’ haircut of the menopausal matriarch and instead told my stylist to sharpen her scissors and get cropping, and yes, I’d have that coffee now please with a side order of Valium if she had any because if I ended up looking like a little dude I’d need something to numb the pain.

  However, I love my dramatic physical change and so does my adorable hubby, who excitedly declared, “you should never let your hair grow again, it’s much sexier short, I love it;” and I agree. However, even though I polled and pestered everyone, I did make the decision to channel my inner Pixie to please ME and only ME, meaning I’m thrilled with my new do. It makes me feel good and that’s what counts! I did offer to donate my hair to charity in the hope it could be used by a wig maker for those experiencing hair loss due to medical treatment or alopecia; sadly, as it had been chemically treated, as in it was toxic at this stage, it was deemed to be unsuitable.

  If any readers wish to follow my hairspiration and get the chop and want to donate their hair to charity, log onto www.rapunzelfoundation.com for more information.


Sexualisation of 10-year-olds: of course it is the fault of irresponsible parents

Shocked by ISPCC claims that some 10-year-old children are being put under pressure to have sex, our columnist says parents need to act responsibly or it could be their innocent baby who is called Childline in the future…

A whole lot of things greatly upset me last week and made me weep. I’m still not the better for seeing that heart-wrenching image of what must surely be today’s equivalent of the horrific and disturbing  Vietnamese ‘napalm girl,’ picture taken of a then 9-year-old Kim Phuc back in 1972.

  This iconic image was that of tragic, innocent little baby Aylan Kurdi’s lifeless body washed up on a Turkish beach on the holiday resort of Bodrum; a beach I have visited many times while on holiday. The image of that infant was so visceral it makes my stomach lurch every time I think of it.

  However, meanwhile back on the good aul land of saints and scholars, another ‘innocent’ child-related subject has raised its ugly head and helped crystalize the whole sad and sorry sex education (or lack thereof) issue our country has been playing ping pong with since, oh, since way before I was a small child – and that is the ISPCC’s revelations that ‘children as young as 10 are being pressured into sex.’ No, I am not under medication, that’s what I read. In fact, over 30,000 youngsters contacted Childline last year looking for help with ‘sexual matters.’ 

  One 10-year-old little girl (a mere two years’ older than my beautiful, precious, innocent little granddaughter) even rang in and said she ‘felt pressured to give in and have sex with her boyfriend.’ Apparently this little one, who is someone’s daughter, someone’s granddaughter, someone’s baby girl, was ‘told by her friends to have sex or lose him,’ according to ISPCC CEO Grainia Long.

  Seriously? What the X%&!? I mean, surely this is the stuff of dark, sleazy trashy porn we’d expect to see in a smutty film noir, not something that happens behind the spotless lace curtains of good old Catholic Ireland? Well apparently it is and the wonderful, put-upon Childline charity is trying hard to deal with it.

  So, in light of those shocking revelations, can I ask where are these kids’ parents? You see, I blame you, not your sons and not your daughters. YOU!!! In my opinion these parents are complicit in this loss of innocence by allowing their babies to grow up too quickly, by allowing them free, unsupervised access to social media, by dressing them provocatively as babies in clothing emblazoned with explicit sexual slogans – yes I do mean you; the mother I saw pushing a baby in a pram recently where the poor infant was wearing a pink t-shirt that said ‘The Condom Broke,’ and skinny jeans over her nappy!  

  I’m not a violent person (no, really, I’m not), but I’m kinda sorry I didn’t go over and slap that mother because by trying to be ‘fun’ and ‘ironic,’ she needs to know that effectively, by dressing her innocent baby in that t-shirt with the demeaning message, she is promoting her in a provocative manner that will have an accumulative effect culminating in her child one day being a panicked 10-year-old needing to ring a responsible adult at Childline for help, advice and support with a crisis pregnancy or a serious, devastating, sexual assault because her cretinous parents have, from babyhood, conditioned her into thinking she is a sex object who really needs to focus all her attentions on pleasing her boyfriend. And while I’m at it…who allows their 10-year-old child to have a boy/girlfriend anyway? If you do, you’re simply failing to do your duty to protect your child. Do I sound harsh? Yes? Tough!

  Look, by all means allow your kids to have boy/girl friends; ‘friends’ being the key word here, friends who play innocent games together, who walk to the park, who enjoy playing sports and laughing and joking together, who swap CDs and listen to ID, not grope, abuse and pressure each other to engage in adult activities. It’s their middle childhood years; nurture them through this new growing sense of self and let them enjoy who they are, for God’s sake.

  Look readers, I’m no expert at all; just a mother, just a grandmother (oh and just a stepmother too) who believes strongly that parents/guardians must understand they have responsibilities to educate and protect their children; to equip them with information; age and ability appropriate of course; regarding these serious issues because it is clear to anyone with an IQ higher than room temperature that these 10-year-old kids, (the boys who put the pressure on and girls who feel pressured) do not know, nor do they understand, the clear implications of their actions.

  Let me say it loud and clear kids because someone needs to tell you…you are NOT competing in a marathon to lose your virginity!!!

  We must strike a healthy balance with our kids whom, I have to say, are maturing much more quickly these days, meaning at age ten, they should have a balance of what is clearly right and what is clearly wrong, and as our parental role changes (not diminishes) during this stage, these 10-year-olds will start to form their own opinions about the world and their immediate surroundings. So this is my suggestion to those parents whose young sons are allegedly putting pressure on these little girls…act now; when teaching your son about sex and sexuality, why not impress upon him the clear advantages of respecting, not pressurising, little girls into having sexual intercourse? Just a thought!

  And, for those parents who think it’s ‘cute’ to pop an unhealthy, provocative slogan on their infant daughter or who dress them in padded bikinis; get a clue. Teach them self-respect and, er, also, to play hard to get; and substitute that sleazy slogan with an image of Wonder Woman or Super Girl, or some other strong female character they can look up to and emulate, and imbue in them a sense of self-esteem, self-identity, self-importance and self-control, because to do otherwise is simply poor parenting on your part.

* If you need support/advice then Freephone ISPCC on 1800 666666 or text ‘talk’ to 50101.


There’s a Louis-shaped void in this season’s X Factor as the Foulsome Foursome fail to impress

Having worked with Louis Walsh in the past, our columnist missed him from the X Factor panel of judges on Saturday, and, “even though his feedback was getting a bit tired”, she wants the genial Mayo man brought back!

It’s series 12; (and while every year I promise the luckiest husband alive that I won’t tune in), last Saturday, as I perched myself in front of the box, armed with a bottle of wine and a curry to watch the caustic crew, i.e. the worthless lifeforms, the most irritating bimbos, and the obsessive compulsive, mindless pieces of fluff who look like they’ve all undergone brain bypasses…call them what you will – I do –  throttle their way through the X Factor’s debut show, I have to say, I really do miss our lovely Louis.

  You see, I adore Louis; he’s a gent. I have worked with him several times in the past, and, even though his feedback to previous ‘performers’ was getting a bit tired, unimaginative and repetitive – come on, how many times can we listen to Louis telling auditionees  “you can sing, you can dance, you’re a little popstar,” or, my favourite, “you’re a van driver from Croydon,” to Ben Haenow – er, I’d say it was a safe bet he knew that; did Syco Simon have to replace our favourite judge with DJ Grim Rickshaw – or whatever his name is?

  Who the hell is he? Am I the only one who’s never heard of this ‘celebrity’ judge with the hair that looks like a toilet brush? At least our Louis has nice hair, a personality, a heart of gold and a few, (if somewhat dubious) little sayings; and he also always championed the Irish performers who now have nobody in their corner. 

  As for Rita Ora; is the enfant terrible a bit of a Billy-No-Mates?

I only ask ‘cos she did say “I want to be your friend,” to auditionee Lauren Murray; and is she lacking in sibling support, ‘cos again, she told girl band from the Philippines, The Fourth Power, “I want to be your sister.” Wow, after those declarations of desperation, I thought poor Rita would surely be seen scattering the ashes of her street cred down the Thames.

  I particularly felt sorry for pretty little Mullingar student Kellie Kiernan who looked fabulous and who did herself, her family and the Irish proud but who unfortunately fell foul of the judges when nerves got the better of her, bless her, leading the sun-tanned one to irritatingly call her “babe,” and mediocre male Grimshaw to shoulder shrug and unsympathetically tell her, “I know it’s terrifying in here but that’s kind of the deal.”

  Really Grimmy? Cut her a bit of slack; it’s a daunting task for such a young girl. Why don’t you call me if you ever hit puberty Rick because I’d hardly consider that a reputable critique from someone who probably feasts on his ego whilst worshipping his massive supply of hair products and who thinks it was ok to put ‘Techno Susan,’ the twerking 60-year-old granny from Brighton through with four yeses for her repulsive mauling of ‘No Limit’ by 2 Unlimited despite the fact she failed to hit one single note!!! Yes judges, ya really hitched your wagon to that one didn’t ya! Hold on there a minute while I get my night vision goggles and go looking for your grip on reality, ‘cos I think you’ve all seriously lost it!

  And it’s not just me; take a look at the reported massive drop of almost two million viewers if you don’t believe me! I’m no expert talent-spotter like former judge Louis, who has, by the way, managed some of Ireland’s most successful acts, but in my opinion last Saturday’s opening episode, showcasing screeching, fifth rate karaoke fodder, was probably the naffest, daftest, most mawkish ‘singing’ contest on the planet. (Oh ok, hold on, second naffest, we do have The Voice of Ireland).

  I have to say, and in the words of Louis, “the performance of the night” for me was Olly Murs’ (proof that disguising the fact you can’t sing by wearing a pair of tight-fitting trousers does work), ‘devastation’ as he whinged on co-conspirator, sorry co-presenter, Caroline Flack’s shoulder when his former ‘Small Town Blaggers,’ bandmate Jon Goodey, who looked like a nice guy, but who failed to even hold his own attention, neglected to make an impact. Seriously, readers, Olly’s lickle pinched up face was a picture, bless. Carlsberg don’t do ‘devastation,’ but if they did…

  As for Kellie from Mullingar, not to worry love, there’s always The Voice of Ireland, God love you, and at least you won’t ever have the dubious pleasure of making it through X Factor’s so-called ‘singing’ contest, because let’s face it, past winners do seem to have faded into obscurity. I’d say you had a lucky escape hon.

  As for Grim Rickshaw…well it appears his real talent so far lies in his ability to keep his silly hair upright, and for the record, pretty boy, I’ve got turnips rotting in my vegetable drawer with prettier hair; so there! Just sayin’.

Don’t give us excuses, Leo: Tell us what you’re doing to rectify the BCG vaccine shortage

Our unimpressed columnist says Health Minister Leo Varadkar’s position on unavailability of vaccine to immunise babies against Tuberculosis (TB) is highly unacceptable and a ‘total cop-out’…

Minister for Health Leo Varadkar’s explanation that ‘production difficulties, delivery delays and sealing problems,’ were the reasons the Bacillus Calmette-Guérin or BCG vaccine, which immunises against Tuberculosis (TB) is currently unavailable to new-born babies in Ireland is, in my opinion highly unacceptable and a total cop-out.

  So, as a concerned parent, albeit, one who is not, nor ever again likely to become pregnant, my response to Minister Varadkar is: well what the hell are you doing to rectify the situation?

  I mean seriously Leo, don’t tell us your problems, don’t give us your whiney excuses, instead, give us your solutions because you are supposed to be in charge and there are currently a reported 50,000 babies and potentially more who are now at serious risk of not receiving this essential vaccine at the  appropriate recommended time.

  According to the www.hse.ie ‘newborn babies may get the BCG in the maternity hospital or you can make an appointment to bring your baby to your local HSE health centre,’ meaning, on one hand, it appears, the HSE recommends you have your infant vaccinated ASAP, however, on the other…when it’s convenient, and, in an apparent,  “eh, wait till I tell ya” pathetic attempt at a half-arsed explanation, ‘the BCG vaccine stock in all areas expired at the end of April 2015 so BCG vaccination clinics in HSE Clinics and Maternity hospitals have been postponed until new stock arrives,’ (cue massive shoulder shrug), so don’t worry, ’cos sure it’ll all be grand; suck it up and see what happens.

  Ah yes readers, welcome to our health service’s PR on a FAS course.

  In fact if memory serves me correctly Leo, this time last year we were told the problems with the shortage of the BCG vaccines had, whew, ‘now been resolved,’ with the HSE stressing it would still be ‘offered to newborns and those at greatest risk.’ In addition, again, I distinctly remember that back in 2007 (8 years ago) when my own granddaughter was born, the HSE also reportedly experienced ‘difficulties,’ with the same vaccine because the only company supplying the European market had ‘regulatory’ problems. For the record, my granddaughter did receive her BCG and all other relevant vaccinations.

  Simultaneously, a statement issued by the  Department of Health last week kindly informed us, (as if we were all 5-year-olds who could be assuaged and stage-managed) that, well now, ya see, ‘other countries are experiencing similar delays in acquiring supplies of the vaccine from the Danish company – the only licensed supplier of the vaccine in the EU.” Now, how can I put it Leo love, – but, it’s like this, we don’t give a monkey’s about other countries, you are not the Minister for Health for other countries so stop trying to fob us off with your petty excuses; you may be young and handsome Sir but I’m old and irregular and pathetic cover stories won’t wash with me because, as my kids found out many years ago, you cannot pull the wool over my eyes. 

  Sooo, in light of this recent scandal, because that’s what it is, a scandal, and in order not to damage your lukewarm friendship with the electorate, let me pose the following question; nervous much? Worried much?...you should be ‘cos, if you don’t resolve this very important issue right now, as in get off your backside, pull out all the stops and  tell the manufacturers to get the finger out or better still, find another reliable manufacturer and supplier so that those who are at risk, those who are vulnerable, can receive the vaccinations they need and deserve, then I’m afraid come election time hon it’s exit stage left and cut, to you, (and the rest of Fine Gael/Labour) languishing in exile and in opposition.

  Telling us that your Department has  “no control over when BCG vaccines will be delivered by the vaccine manufacturer” and  “these supply issues will continue until at least Quarter 1 2016,” is an absolute disgrace and will go nowhere towards soothing the concerns of Irish mothers and others who are at risk of contracting tuberculosis (TB); especially those in areas like rural Roscommon who’re living on farms because it has been documented that cows can carry this disease.

  And while bovine Tuberculosis can spread to humans, I must stress here it is unlikely, but even a small threat such as breathing or inhaling air that is contaminated by the bacteria, etc. can be avoided if our Government got its act together and did its job in the way it promised it would during its long-forgotten election promises back in 2011. Remember when your boss Enda made an election pledge to “protect and defend,” our precious A&E adding the party was “committed to maintaining the services at Roscommon General Hospital.”

  Now come on Leo, you’ve got a high IQ, you’ve got a medical degree, you’ve got the smarts so stop shrieking pathetic ruses and empty promises at us; you should know when to cease treating the Irish people as if we have the attention span of a fly.

  If anyone canvassing for votes is brave enough to knock on my door, (and you’re all welcome to do so) please, a word of caution, do not feel compelled to conceal your ignorance through the use of bullsxxt…I have a big shovel (and a big mouth) and I’m not afraid to use either.

The great Dummygate debate!

David and Victoria Beckham’s child may, strictly speaking, be a bit old for sucking on a soother but the idea that parents cannot exercise their personal right to give their kids an object to soothe them evokes my utter contempt…

When the print media published a photograph of former England footballer Deadwood and former Spice Girl warbler turned fashion designer Skelator Beckham’s (aka David and Victoria) four-year-old daughter Harper sucking a soother earlier this week, the images sent politically correct, know-it-all crazies into meltdown mode setting off the great Dummygate Debate.

We were even treated to some opinions from so-called experts eager to pour scorn and scoff at the little girl’s ‘addiction’ with the credible Laura Haugh from mummypages.ie exclaiming her shock, horror apparently feeling the youngster is too old to suck a soother reportedly saying

“It’s absolutely incredibly irresponsible of her parents to allow her to walk around during the daytime with a soother in her mouth, not only for the child’s speech development. Walking around with a soother means she’s not actually communicating, she’s not exercising her facial muscles”.

In addition, parenting expert Clare Byam-Cook is quoted as saying “If she has a dummy in their mouth at this age, at four, it really can damage her teeth and it is very likely to hinder speech development.”

Wow! Steady now ladies. Let’s not lose perspective here…it’s only a little girl sucking on a soother for God’s sake; there are worse atrocities going on in the world! And while I agree wholeheartedly with both of you that yes, Harper is too old for the soother, I have to ask if perhaps you’re over-reacting just a tad.

I mean, while it’s not uncommon for society to anticipate a parent’s shortcomings with fear and trepidation, even, in some cases, before their sprogs have gotten out of their nappies, the thing I’d like to emphasise is that it’s not really yours or anyone else’s business how the Beckhams or any other couple raise their kids.

I mean, when the time comes to surgically remove Harper’s soother, get her speech therapy and realign those gnashers – (if required), because let’s face it, I do personally feel that after the age of two years a dribbly doodie definitely becomes less of a soothing influence and more of a bad habit, and may lead to some sort of impaired physical development; the question I would pose is – whose hell will it be anyway?

Not yours’, not mine; it will be the Beckhams’. And the general opinion that they and other parents cannot exercise their personal right to give their kids an object to soothe them, be it a dummy or a little sheet (as my second daughter had) simply evokes my utter contempt. When daughter No 1 was born I swore, in my blissful ignorance, that I would never, ever give her a doodie, as we call it.

I mean, at the tender age of 18, it was part of my Parental Moral Covenant to allow my child to ‘self soothe.’ What a total feckin’ eejit!

Apparently I’d read too many Dr Spock style baby books. Looking back it’s certainly impressive and laughable to see how utterly naïve I was.

However, I can tell you within one week of that tiny, premature being, whom I was demand breast feeding, turning purple and screaming her little head off, with the encouragement of her dad, I legged it to the chemist, purchased a doodie and a backup doodie, rushed home, sterilised both and quickly shoved one into her permanently gaping gob the second she latched off!

When I was awaiting baby No 2’s arrival my hospital bag was packed with four doodies; two blue, two pink, much to the annoyance of the portly maternity nurse who, when she practically tried to rugby-tackle the pink one from my meaty paw, was forced to admit she’d never even given birth let alone sat up all night with a screaming baby.

She went ballistic when I gave the highly emotional new mother of a baby boy in the bed next to me the blue ones.

Besides, doesn’t the HSE website advise that ‘some research suggests that giving a baby a soother (dummy) every time they are being placed to sleep may reduce the risk of cot death.’

Now ok, I know Harper Beckham, whom at four years’ old is way beyond an age where many health experts discourage the use of pacifiers in the shape of soother, and for the record I began weaning my kids off their doodies when they were both 18 months old, insisting they hand over their much cherished sticky objects to Santa for Rudolph’s babies when both were aged 2, but I really do feel that this Dummygate debate has spiralled way out of control and is now, as far as I can see, more akin to radical mean-spirited parent-bashing.

Parents who allow their kids to suck soothers beyond the recommended age are not raising the Anti-Christ and I have to ask all those with sceptical, hostile views if they themselves have ever been schooled in the intrinsic value of a peaceful family life or if they’re just spouting off for the sake of hearing their own voices?

Look, sometimes a small child needs that extra little bit of comfort and mammy and daddy need that extra little bit of peace and quiet and a good parent will always facilitate their child’s needs.

Besides, if you take away the doodie too early the child may resort to sucking their thumb…then what would these Mother Earth expert types advise…amputation?

Is hiring a Hot Nanny the equivalent of marriage massacre?

Most home help clearly aren’t husband/wife snatchers, but our columnist still thinks there’s merit in handing over those child-minding responsibilities to Grandpa and Grandma…

It’s been widely reported throughout La La land that A-listers Jennifer Garner and Ben Affleck have struggled over the years to keep their marriage alive; even attending therapy in a bid to hold on to the love that obviously once drew them together.

  Now this is admirable; fair play to them, because in my view, couples, especially those with children, should do everything in their power to try and keep their family intact; but as I well know, sometimes you just have to draw that line, walk away and, heartbreakingly, admit defeat. However, (and I’m no counsellor), if you’re trying to mend your fractured marriage readers; there is one thing you should never do and that is hire a hot, sexy, young nymphet to look after your kiddies or to work in your home a la Jennifer Garner and those other high profile, guileless women who came before her…Sadie Frost, Victoria Beckham and Maria Shriver immediately spring to mind. Seriously, what were they thinking?

  Now it doesn’t matter if the father of your children is so gorgeous he’d make Adonis jealous or if he’s stomach-churningly Quasimodo-style ugly that he’d make an onion weep; the fact remains girls, that (in some cases) if you stick a little strumpet with bazookas so humongous they’d swallow up the entire Irish army and a desperate-for-any-opportunity-to-tickle-somebody’s-fancy hubby under the same roof the chances are that ‘cute hoor’ will coo and cackle like a sad bunny boiler until she’s snared that creep from under your nose!

  Mind you, not all home help are husband/wife snatchers; most are highly professional people with no interest in anything other than getting the job done! And Affleck’s ‘affair’ is simply an allegation and not all hubbies/wives have it away with the staff. But if you want my advice…nepotism is yer only man…as in keep it in the family.

  Ok, asking Grandma to mind the kiddies may mean you’re making the supreme sacrifice; especially if she’s a nosy old bint who’ll interfere and dole out unwanted advice regarding the ankle-biters’ fast food diet or tut-tut at the amount of time spent in front of the TV, which can be unfair and demoralising for you, but believe me when I tell you there are advantages to being surrounded by people you know and trust wholeheartedly; even if you constantly ask yourself  “was this a wise move?”

  When I went back to work No 1 daughter was left in the capable hands of my wonderful mother-in-law, and even if she sometimes muttered a disapproving “a mother’s place is in the home,” it was worth it to know my child was in her excellent caring and loving hands. When I had No 2, my darling dad, who, following early retirement, found himself at a loose end agreed (we were thrilled) to become our little girl’s ‘Manny’. Realistically, apart from mam and dad, there is probably no better person than a doting grandparent or family member to look after your cherished child; someone who will understand their moods and embrace their vulnerabilities, someone who will be a driving force and work to emotionally support your family and at the same time, you know they’ll keep their grubby hands off the merchandise, i.e. the weak-willed hubby/wife who’s suddenly become partial to a muffin top and a ra ra skirt or a set of abs.

  Now I’m not saying it’ll be easy to deal with employing Grandma or Grandad, nay it will be a challenge – and you’ll need to look at the obvious resentments that may occur as well as the rewards your family will reap. I mean what happens if Nana or Grandad is an idiot and has a problem recognising who’s in charge and spends the first 6 weeks reporting to your 8-year-old for his homework routine instead of you?

  Or then again, what if Nana is the argumentative, know-it-all? If this is the case, my advice would be to ask yourself if you’re prepared to hear a lot of negative, snide comments from hubby’s precious mammy. Personally for me the answer here would be a big fat NO and when the old bat had flown home I’d be the type who’d take the argument all the way to the bedroom and beyond. Yep, I’m the type of harridan who’d milk that disagreement for all its worth then go right back and pick the bones bare. So it was lucky my former husband’s mother and I adored each other and as for my dear dad, well he’s my hero and can do no wrong, meaning luckily, in my situation I was able to go to work each day with an easy mind knowing my kids and my sanity were safe.

  That said, another piece of advice if you’re considering employing a relative is to be prepared to divorce your personal feelings, man up and tell them exactly how you wish your children to be cared for. I mean, ok, you’re not expecting to arrive home, bottle of wine chilling in the fridge, dinner on the table with Nana tucking the kids under the duvet, popping a brolly ready to fly away home as soon as she’s finished chirping ‘Feed the Birds…tuppence a bag.’

  No, that bottle of wine will have to wait ‘till you’ve listened to a litany of arthritic problems, examine new liver spots and have discussions regarding lack of daily bowel movements before you convince hubby to drive her home but remain tight-lipped and humour Nana because having her (and granddad) as your kids’ carers means your family will always win through; will have mutual goals and will share a personal dedication that comes only with that strong bond, leading to a high degree of commitment that every family with working parents needs.

  Take it from poor Jennifer Garner and the rest of those Hollywood wives who’ve dealt with hubby’s alleged, rumoured affair with the hot help, and who may now wish they’d stuck with the familiar…because in my view, it’s most certainly preferable to building a trust with someone else, someone who is clearly not committed to providing support to your family’s success or longevity. 

  Sometimes ladies, when it comes to protecting what you’ve got it’s not always a case of live and let live and to be honest, even though the majority of home help are consummate professionals who do not want your spouse, if someone tried to come between me and mine, I can tell you without a shadow of a doubt the situation would quickly become a case of kill or be killed.


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