My sister's husband has cut me out after a row over my puppy and now we have not spoken for a year

DEAR DEIDRE: AFTER a row over a puppy, my sister’s husband blanked me and has blocked me on Facebook.

I got a puppy in Christmas 2020 with my partner. My sister and her husband were over and all was well until the puppy started chewing at a bauble on the Christmas tree.

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The puppy looked startled when my brother-in-law started shouting and waving his hands. I said: “Stop it! You’ll only encourage him.”

He looked upset, so I apologised for snapping. But they both left in a huff. He’s always been controlling.

The next day, my sister rang me saying I’d hurt his feelings. Now he says I accused him of hitting the puppy, which I didn’t do.

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Things have gone from bad to worse. My sister has become spiteful.

I’ve not spoken to her for more than a year. It’s such a trivial thing but she says things have gone too far and I’m to blame.

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DEIDRE SAYS: Your sister is caught in the middle and for a quiet life might feel she had no choice but to side with her husband – someone who can’t take any criticism.

If he is controlling, she might be scared to go against him. Blaming you would be easier than admitting this about her husband.

You can find understanding support through Standalone (, which helps people who are estranged from their family.

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