DEAR HARRIETTE: My immediate family and I have been riding lately. I don’t think that anybody is right or wrong, but there has been constant sniping about trivial issues for the past two weeks.
A distant relative is currently staying with us, and they keep butting into our arguments. Of course, they take my parents’ side automatically. I think they should just stay out of it.
They are still staying with us. Should I tell them to butt out?
Mind Your Business
DEAR MIND YOUR BUSINESS: It is hard for people to stay out of the swirl of controversy when they are in the midst of it. You are fighting a losing battle if you try to get them to back off, especially if they are siding with your parents.
What you may want to do instead is ask your parents if you can contain the ongoing debate to the immediate family. Ask them if you can find ways to speak privately about whatever issues creep up between you without involving your relative.