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Byline: Steve Groves

THE news that nagging could save your life has not come as anything of a shock by here. It's happened to me. Well, it may be not have been literally life-saving, but certainly life-changing. So you won't find me adopting stereotypical male views over the whole nagging debate, will you? Steve Dub in Carmarthen Anyway, the current Mrs Groves points out that she doesn't nag. She suggests. And suggests, and suggests. For my part I listen, assimilate, internally debate and act accordingly. Sometimes that means I do nothing but at least I've thought it through.

I don't nag either. I have long adopted the policy in all sorts of situations that when trying to get someone else to do something it is best to make them think it's their idea. This has worked in professional and domestic periods and led to a stress-free path through life.

It's the researchers who are calling it nagging, not me - and have identified women as being responsible for nagging for the equivalent of a week a year. But this works out at only about 20 minutes a day. So I have now suggested that we adopt the system which I'm reliably informed works so well for the Royal Family.

Twenty minutes every day is set aside for what we could call "a symposium on a full and frank exchange of views". Prince Philip is submitted to Her Majesty's Pleasure and for 20 minutes he stands there and takes his medicine. Over a glass of chilled Sanatogen, he is asked whether or not he's put the bins out. Has he cleaned the budgie's cage? Has he wormed the corgi? How much did he lose on the 3.10 at Uttoxeter? How's the tenors in Dowlais? Other couples in the public eye probably have different approaches. Does Mrs David "Posh" Beckham employ someone to do her nagging for her by text message? Does Catherine Zeta Jones summons Mr Douglas by shouting up the stairs in her clearest Mumbles: "Michael, get 'ere"? Each to their own. The point about this research is that it was conducted for the Everyman cancer charity and amid the fun over nagging made the point that one of the issues most often raised by women was their partner's refusal to go to the doctor to get something checked out.

Some years ago I fell victim to a medical condition that affects one in four of us and did nothing about it until it reached a crisis point. If I'd dealt with it much earlier I wouldn't have wasted as many NHS resources and caused so much worry to friends and family who did eventually force me into doing something. The charity says women play a vital role when it comes to the health of the men in their lives and they lead by example in keeping up with medical checks. You'll find no argument with that here.

But the result of the cure is the sort of tosh you're reading now. So you know who to blame.
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Title Annotation:Letters
Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Jun 21, 2010
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