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My Husband's Driving is Dangerous

Posted by Patricia_Marie
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on Thursday, 26 February 2015
Dear Patricia Marie,
My husband's driving is becoming increasingly alarming. We are both in our mid-60s and retired, and frequently travel to visit our son and his family some 50 miles away.

Trips with him at the wheel feel erratic and dangerous, with him ignoring speed limits and road signs, and crossing lanes with scant regard for other road users. After a car journey, I feel a nervous wreck. I also worry when he is out driving on his own as he is often fiddling with the radio or adjusting his satellite navigation device. Any attempt to pass comment or discuss this simply meets with hostility, however I approach it.

What can I do?

Patricia Marie says.....

Enraged drivers are so out-of-control that they endanger the life and health of their passengers, fellow motorists and pedestrians. Therefore, with your safety and those of others at issue, your husbands erratic driving is an extremely serious problem.

You need to sit down with him - not when you are in the car - and ask him directly about his unacceptable behaviour behind the wheel. Talking about his anger and loss of control, could well prove an outlet for your husbands feelings, rather than him suppressing them until they explode on the road.

How does he handle other difficulties in his life? People who display road rage often have many issues and if addressed could improve their aggression. It's unmanaged stress and emotions that cause bad driving. Could your husband be angry at you, and consciously or not, be using his driving to make a statement? Whatever the reason, there is no excuse for his dangerous driving, and he needs to find new ways to manage his anger. I would recommend that he pay a visit to his G.P. who can refer him for some anger management.

However, if he gets defensive, dismisses your fears or blames other road users for his attitude, I would make alternative travel arrangements. Just because your husband won't put your safety first, it doesn't mean you can't.

London Fashion WEAK

Posted by Mum About Town
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on Wednesday, 25 February 2015
It's a funny old week of fashion business, with catwalks spinning around the cities of the globe quicker than you can say Tom Ford or Victoria Beckham. Tottering over in heels, the droves of fashionistas land in our capital on a mission to show, tell and meet their favourite designer, brand or a la mode idol. Many hell bent on being snapped by those with a snappy photography habit before sipping a cocktail or two with equally passionate trend-followers.

In reality though, it's enough to make you feel weak, at more than the knees. Not enough hot meals to go round, endless walking/standing in stilts and often dressed in the least comfortable attire – in some vane (or maybe vain) attempt to be noticed.

And then there's the sweeping wave of FOMO too. Top of the shops is always going to be Top Shop closely followed by Burberry as the hottest ticket in (show) town. Elbowing in to get a first glimpse at those styles, faces, trends, images... what's in and what's out... who's in the frow?

Before long the city empties out and the colourful creatures fly on, while I'm left wondering if this frenzy of fashion is a moment of weakness or simply a week of passionate pester-power to fuel our next (fashion) purchase?

The Scottish Guide to Country Dressing

Posted by Young Ladies About Town
Young Ladies About Town
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on Tuesday, 24 February 2015
Last week I had the pleasure of attending a private dinner at The Punchbowl, Mayfair hosted by Archie and Karen Hume from A Hume the famous Scottish county clothing shop beloved by locals, international visitors and the Duke of Roxburghe for whom they produce his estate tweed.


Classic country sports and associated clothing from wax jackets, green wellington and tweed is part of our national identity, and it's a look that especially the Italians, Americans and surprisingly The Swedish love to emulate. A Hume in Kelso is where they all head for bespoke tweed suiting and traditional customers service. A third generation shop run with passion for heritage, we listened to how Archie has worked with their own archives to create a new tweed to celebrate the shop's 85th anniversary.

Made up of green, blue and lavender- the green represents the Scottish country side, the blue the River Tweed and the lavender represents the Heather Moors. "I look at old designs and let them sit with me, I overlay a thread and colours and see which work, which colours speak to me". Made in local Hawick mills using water from the River Tweed, the passion with which Archie talks about his history and their customers is second to none and clearly woven into the fabric of each garment as the wool itself.


I totally get why people travel form all over the world to go there; however recognising this can't always be possible they have embraced the digital age and developed an online presence that has just won them two coveted fashion industry award with Drapers – Independent Retailer of the Year and Best Independent Multi-Channel Operator. It's a winning mix, the clothes that we want, a good clear website and human customer service at the end of a phone who have a proper conversation with you. It's the attention to the small details that this independent shop offers that makes the big differences.


I like that the tweed caps are named after his friend's farms in the Scottish Borders. I like that they know generations of local families by name, and I like that I can sit at my desk in London and order my favourite, and apparently EVERY woman's favourite, Dubarry Galway, tan in size 6!

Just like their tweed, A Hume is a classic company intertwined with history and love and sure to endure many more Scottish seasons with us.

Oh Dear Myleene

Posted by Mum About Town
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on Friday, 20 February 2015
I'm feeling the urge to join in the Myleene madness. Small is celebrating 9 years this coming Monday and I'm being asked what he might be lacking. Of course, the honest answer is 'nothing at all'. My small boy is happy with all that he has and lacks absolutely nothing. But... he did manage to destroy our football goal in the garden so is saving up to replace it.

And so, as I suggest an Amazon voucher, I hit Myleene Klass territory. Having publically shamed a mother at her daughter's school for asking for Cash-for-Kindle, a debate has since raged over cash versus presents. For the over privileged child, I should add.

A whip around has never been a bad idea. On the other hand, shamefully outing a fellow mum has. Perhaps on the search for a little self-publicity, I think Myleene might have missed the crucial point. It certainly wasn't greed which sent the accused email but a brilliantly resourceful mother who was ensuring that her child didn't receive a spoilt pile of endless (slightly useless) gifts.

Isn't it curious how a millionaire can get the act of gifting so very wrong?

Hypothetical Sticky Situation

Posted by Patricia_Marie
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on Thursday, 19 February 2015
Dear Patricia Marie,
I have recently come out of a 4 year relationship because my ex told me he would want an abortion if I were to ever become pregnant. Not that he would force one on me of course, but that would be what he would prefer. This crushed me, not because I'm against abortion (because I'm not, it's a personal choice in my opinion but an emotional one I couldn't go through with).

My ex and I split up because of that, and I've been with someone new for the past three months. The new gentleman in my life also told me he'd prefer an abortion. While the new boyfriend reassures me that his feelings aren't personal against me, he feels he simply isn't mature enough to entertain the thought of wanting a child. I have no intention of ever becoming pregnant before marriage, however I do want some reassurance that no matter what happens, the man I love would be there for me.

I am not ready to have a family right now, nor am I planning to. But I find it incredibly difficult at my age (28) to consider that a man who is truly emotionally mature and responsible and in love can also not even entertain the fact of not wanting an abortion. I truly believe that I could never handle the emotional reprucutions of an abortion, and cannot quite come to terms with the fact that the men I seem to fall in love with don't see a pregnancy as something they would have an emotional connection with.

My question to you is, should I stay with my current boyfriend and just trust that he doesn't mean this personally, or leave him and seek out a man who is on the same page as me in regards to this sensitive topic?

Patricia Marie says.....

You are making decisions on assumptions, and by doing so not only are you putting intense pressure on yourself, but are then unable to fully enjoy your relationship. If you were to get pregnant, the fear of your partner wanting you to have an abortion and abandoning you is so overwhelming you are almost wanting to risk ending it for something that may never happen. I'm wondering if these insecurities are connected to deeply buried feelings, igniting past fears of loss and separation.

Even if you were to meet someone who initially gave you assurances, the reality is people and situations change and we can leave ourselves open to disappointment if things can't always be as we had initially hoped. You are wanting guarantees, something life cannot give us - no matter what the circumstances. Not sure the men you say you fall in love with aren't able to connect emotionally to a pregnancy, but suspect it's more likely they are neither ready nor wanting to be fathers just yet.

I believe you could benefit from some counselling which would help explore your fears and anxiety, enabling you to deal with things in a more positive way, so you can enjoy your relationship in the here and now and be in a better place to deal with whatever the future brings.

The British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy have a directory where you can find a therapist in your area

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