Dear Ms. Vicki,
I think my 16-year-old sister has a crush on my husband. To me, she is flirting with him and I think he enjoys the attention from her.
It's as if I'm not paying him enough attention so now he expects it from my sister.
He's been deployed twice since we've been married. My sister sent him more care packages and had more contact with him online than I did. It's like she has to be first.
We are stationed in my hometown. I was so excited about being near family, especially because I'm so young, but my sister is starting to make me wonder if this was a good idea.
I try not to visit my parents as much because I know she is going to be there groveling at my husband's feet. My sister has been a big help because she will babysit when I have to go to school, or when my husband and I want to go out and have fun together. But it's always like she wants to be in my shoes.
I want to make her stop. My sister puts lotion on her legs in front of my husband and tries to elongate her legs with every stroke like she's saying "look at my beautiful legs."
I love my sister and I'm not jealous, but I think she's being very inappropriate. How can I put my little sister in her place?
-- Big Sister
Dear Big Sister,
You ended your letter correctly when you said "your little sister." I think this is a simple innocent time when she could have a crush on your husband.
I'm thinking you and your husband could be in your early twenties. It's common for a teenage girl to have a crush on the "older boy."
Now, this doesn't mean you or your mother shouldn't talk to her about this crush. It would probably be a good idea for you and your mother to talk to her together for some girl time.
While we understand about a young teenage crush, your sister is being inappropriate with your husband and he shouldn't laugh it off or act like he's enjoying the attention. He should make every effort to let your sister know that she is his little sister and that's the way he sees her ... that's all. You don't have to embarrass her, but she has to know what's appropriate.
Here's some more advice: Your sister is spending a lot of time with your child and with your husband. I'll bet your sister is a good babysitter etc. In some ways, she could be wishing she had a family now. While you appreciate her help from time to time, it's important that she have every opportunity to be a teenager.
After you talk to her, try harder to make sure she is connected with her own peer group for socialization and find opportunities for you and your little sister to spend time together alone for bonding time.
Let her know that you are a wife and a mother. It's not her job to worry about those responsibilities yet. I hope this helps. Again, I think this is an innocent teenage crush.
-- Ms. Vicki