Pre-Intermediate Level >> Reading And Writing Materials >> Students put together the questions to a newspaper agony aunt and answers given by her - and then discuss whether they agree with the answers or not. Gives good practice of language of advice, should, shouldn't, etc.

Agony Aunt Letters


Read these four letters written to Marge, the agony aunt who works for "The Chesham Observer" newspaper.

Dear Marge,
All the other children laugh at me at school and say my clothes are completely unfashionable. I feel really stupid. I ask my parents to buy me better clothes but they say they don't have enough money. What can I do?
Dear Marge,
I saw one of my work colleagues taking some paper from the office photocopier and put it in her bag. Do you think I should report her for theft to the boss or not? My parents always taught me to tell the truth and that any stealing is wrong. What do you think?
Dear Marge,
I have been married for nearly a year and my husband doesn't seem interested in me anymore. I think he may be more interested in his work partner, a woman half his age. I am pregnant now and feel fat and ugly. Is there any hope for our marriage?
Dear Marge,
I am 16 years old and I want to leave school this year. My parents say it is too early for me and that I should be trying to get into university. I think I am old enough to make my own decisions now. I want to work with my friend Susan in McDonalds. Then, I can start earning money to buy things.

Marge Replies:

Which reply is for which letter?

Dear Jane,
I think your self-confidence is probably a little low at the moment considering your condition. Have a chat with your husband and see if you can resolve the problem of the "other woman" who, I imagine, doesn't exist anyway. I think your husband could just be a little nervous about the new arrival!

Dear Mary,
Your parents are right. You would be better to stay and complete as much of your education as possible. Real opportunities and independence won't come from earning $150 a week but from the qualifications and experience gained by staying with your school friends.

Dear Jim,
You should worry about doing well at school and not about what others say about you. That will show real maturity and, after a while, your not reacting will convince those who complain about what you wear that there is no fun to be had.

Dear Mike,
Your family was correct to teach you about right and wrong but we are only talking about some paper here! Theft is theft and I think you should at least say something to the person before going to your boss. Maybe it was an innocent mistake! If you go to your boss in those circumstances, you will be the most unpopular person in the office and then you will have another problem altogether! Premium

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