I'm scared my alcoholic sister-in-law will seriously injure my brother

DEAR DEIDRE: MY sister-in-law is abusive to my brother. I’m terrified she will seriously injure him one day and I will never forgive myself for not being able to stop it.

She is an alcoholic and they have been married for 30 years. The atmosphere in their home is toxic as she is so vile.

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They have two teenage children who are desperately saving to get out, but even they worry about leaving my brother.

When he threatened to leave, she warned him she would tell everyone he is a wife-beater, which is just not true.

He is a lovely guy of 58 and why he has stayed with her, I’ll never know. My sister-in-law is 56 and we have talked to her about her drinking but nothing changes.

My nephew walked in last week to see her trying to strangle my brother. He won’t retaliate, so my nephew pulled her off him. What can I do to help?

DEIDRE SAYS: You are right to raise the red flag over her behaviour. Violence of any kind is unacceptable in any relationship.

It is often hard for men to admit they are domestic violence victims as they find it difficult to face the fact they are being hurt by their partners. Suggest he calls the Men’s Advice Line for help and support for men suffering domestic abuse (0808 801 0327, mensadviceline.org.uk).

Your brother and his children can find emotional support through We Are With You (wearewithyou.org.uk), which offers free help through local centres.

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