Relationship and family issues

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Chris_B PLEASE READ BEFORE POSTING: 3 important tips to get the most out of this section
  • replies: 0

Hi everyone, The Relationships & Family Issues section is one of the busiest here on our forums. It's also one of the areas where we find members can get themselves into trouble! Before posting here, take a deep breath and be mindful of the following... View more

Hi everyone, The Relationships & Family Issues section is one of the busiest here on our forums. It's also one of the areas where we find members can get themselves into trouble! Before posting here, take a deep breath and be mindful of the following 3 tips: 1. Do you really want to share this with the world? This is a public forum. Are you thinking of posting something that could identify you to a friend or family member? Once you've posted, you can't delete what you've written and we don't take posts down from here unless they've broken one of our community rules. This is because our members spend a lot of time composing replies, and there is a much wider audience that gets a lot out of reading what has been written. It's not fair to ask the community for support, then ask to have it removed once you've read it so others can't also benefit. Use discretion when posting here - think about the level of detail you are sharing, and think also about who might know you are posting here. Also, please keep it clean: this is an all ages forum and explicit discussions about sexual problems are not permitted. Threads and posts of this nature will be removed and your account placed on a moderation hold. 2. What do you want to get out of posting here? Relationship and family issues are stressful. Members sometimes post here seeking advice about a relationship that has broken down, but find themselves getting upset when they don't agree with the response they get. This is a peer support forum, meaning we are not mental health professionals. We are people of all ages and backgrounds, with a wide range of life experiences. While we aim for our discussions to be conducted respectfully, people here will respond with the truth as they see it, from their own experiences and perspectives. We are not here to take sides. Offence is almost never intentional, but it can be sometimes taken. The advice you will see here is not intended to be a substitute for professional counselling. 3. What other support do you have? Most people posting on our forums (about any issue) use this space as a supplement to other supports. This forum is not and cannot be a substitute for offline supports, but it is often a good place to start the ball rolling and find the courage for seeking help. If you are relying solely on an internet forum to resolve your relationship or family issues, you are likely to be disappointed. Check out the Healthy Homes section of our Healthy Families website for further information and resources.

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Worriedhusband Trapped
  • replies: 3

Hey guys, Not sure if I’m in the right place but I need some advice. My marriage is in serious trouble and I don’t know what to do. It got to a point where I told my wife that I wanted out and that I wanted to leave and try to move on with my life. I... View more

Hey guys, Not sure if I’m in the right place but I need some advice. My marriage is in serious trouble and I don’t know what to do. It got to a point where I told my wife that I wanted out and that I wanted to leave and try to move on with my life. I told her how I felt and then asked if we could handle things like adults and talk through things in an honest way. Her response was “not right now but maybe we could talk in 2 weeks”. I’m not sure where the 2 weeks came from but that was the time frame given. Now that we have sort of tried a couple of times to talk about things she is not happy with the fact that I am finally speaking up. The reason that I am on this forum is because she is now threatening to harm herself if I decide to leave and she had also tried to use my boys against me by saying that she will tell them that as a result they will never talk to me again. She also threatened to harm herself 2 days ago. She called me when she was on her way over to pick up our son from university. She called me and told me that I wouldn’t hear from her again and that she wanted me to look after our boys and make them happy. I feel that she is only doing this to somehow hold me to ransom so our marriage is not broken. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

GeorgeAD My wife fell out of love with me without me realising
  • replies: 6

So I am not a huge believer in the stages of grief, but apparently, for the past two years, I have been in denial. It all started when I noticed my wife wasn't saying "I love you" back when I would say it to her. I asked her about it casually and app... View more

So I am not a huge believer in the stages of grief, but apparently, for the past two years, I have been in denial. It all started when I noticed my wife wasn't saying "I love you" back when I would say it to her. I asked her about it casually and apparently she hasn't been happy for some time and she was ready to leave. Obviously this was a shock to me but she had been thinking about it for some time. She had already dealt with it before I had any time to react. I tried to talk it through with her. Offered for us to get some couples counselling but she was already done. Now she has given me an ultimatum to be out of the house by the end of the month. I will respect her wishes and am trying to find a place, I just dont feel like I am mentally in a place where I am ready to move on. I worry about how I am going to cope dealing with the breakdown of our marriage on my own. I have spent many nights in the spare room screaming into a pillow as to not wake our son. Crying in silence because I dont want to be a burden. I was coming to terms with it all until I found out she has started seeing someone else. I dont think she was when this all came to a head, but she was just so far ahead of me in the "moving on" process, she was already at that stage. I asked her (with the caveat that I know its not my place) whether she could hold off seeing anybody else until I have moved out and she responded that she would not discuss dating with me and I should respect her privacy. I feel like I am spiralling and any chance of us reconciling expired before I even knew there were issues. I dont know how to deal with the breakdown of our marriage and I worry about breaking down in front of our son. I just dont know a future without her but she has assured me there is no chance of reconciling as we are. I dont know how do deal with this pain

Cathy_M Was my breakup motivated by mental illness?
  • replies: 3

My boyfriend of several months broke up with me. It was a lovely relationship - we had loads in common and had slowly been coming closer and more comfortable with each other. One day, we were hanging out and I slept over as normal and he seemed to re... View more

My boyfriend of several months broke up with me. It was a lovely relationship - we had loads in common and had slowly been coming closer and more comfortable with each other. One day, we were hanging out and I slept over as normal and he seemed to really love me, then two days later he said he'd completely lost feelings and needed to break up. He insisted that he'd love to be friends with me, just didn't feel romantically anymore. He has a long history of severe depression and insomnia, and his father died suddenly at the end of last year. He'd been starting to talk a little more about how he felt, but had not started to deal with this and shoved it down like a lot of his past traumatic experiences, I think. After he broke up with me I checked in with two of his close friends to ask if he was alright, but they both said that hadn't seen him recently but seemed fine. Since the breakup he's been acting really randomly and I'm not sure what to think. The first two weeks, he acted as if we were still best friends. We were at a mutual event and he came and sat next to me and talked as normal, just didn't touch me at all; he was still texting me pretty much every day. Then, over three days he did a complete 180. He barely texted, and didn't seem to change his clothes or leave his room or sleep. Late one night, I saw him on a walk on his snapmaps and messaged to say goodnight and get home safely - he tends to walk when he's depressed or thinking. He messaged back and said we shouldn't talk anymore, because I'd become boring. He then blanked me for a week, before texting to say that we could still talk, just not as much, so we messaged a couple of times about small things. At another mutual event, he had 5 standard drinks and complimented me using an inside joke that we'd had while dating but didn't really speak to me the rest of the night. Afterwards, he messaged me again to say that he only wanted to be friends in person, not 'online' (i.e. texting etc.). I've seen him a couple of times in group contexts since and its always 50/50 as to whether he'll act strangely or not. Yesterday, he spoke to me normally but went to a huge effort not to stand or sit anywhere near me when our group was walking anywhere. I am so confused, hurt, and lost. Is it reasonable to think there's something mental illness related that caused the breakup and how he's behaving? Does anyone have any insight into what he's thinking? Is there a chance we could date again in future?

EndieAnnie Abuse - I am drained and scared for the future
  • replies: 15

First time post for me. It been a long time coming. Typical woman who puts up with crap. I feel like a maid and a servant who gets zero appreciation, only verbal abuse. If I look back it has always been the case, what makes it to the point of where I... View more

First time post for me. It been a long time coming. Typical woman who puts up with crap. I feel like a maid and a servant who gets zero appreciation, only verbal abuse. If I look back it has always been the case, what makes it to the point of where I cannot continue now, is the very occurrence of verbal, belittling words. I feel I been strong through the years and had the ability to get through it. I honestly feel stupid now to have thought it might get better. It is just spiraling down. Now, to the point of not even acknowledge the fights, sweeping them under the carpet, almost always, as I know the fights get relentless if I either comment of them. I just shut up (most of the time and let the ride go past). It is so wrong. A few times it has gone beyond words. I been physically abused. Threatened. Most of the time it is belittling words. Overseas two years ago he physically abused me and I was ready to leave. He is the loviest guy otherwise…of course..never left. . Years of heartache with infertility, but luckily to be blessed two kids, 11 & 8. I just turned the big 50 and the thought of having somebody constantly put me down in front of the kids it what have tipped me over the edge. He is ruining our children because he cannot restrain himself with verbal abuse, do not blink an eye to it it infront of them. I can stomach a lot but I cannot accept what he is doing. It drives me insanely mad that he cant control the words. I had said countless of times to be quiet but that just fires him more. I cannot give anything more. Financial, scary. How he will behave if I leave scares me. I just have to leave for my kids so they wont hear his horrible rants and I feel absolutely exhausted from it. I have realised that the only time I look forward to is when is not at home. I am so scared and I don’t really have a back up. My mother is getting dementia and my father is overseas. I feel guilty that I m trying to get financial advise to see where I stand when I leave. I feel guilty to get all the papers copied so I have a back up. I feel that I am going behind his back. What is the first step to take? I am scared but the thought of continue the rest of my life in the same way scares me more. Only one person knows how he is for real. Thanks for listening.

Butterfly71 Sad and confused
  • replies: 2

HI I lost my dad about a year ago and couldn't say bye to him because of Covid & border restrictions. My Mum and sister are narcassists, I went through trauma since I was a child. Recently another problem accured where I had to say something and told... View more

HI I lost my dad about a year ago and couldn't say bye to him because of Covid & border restrictions. My Mum and sister are narcassists, I went through trauma since I was a child. Recently another problem accured where I had to say something and told the truth. Unfortunately I am being hated and bullied again. I had no choice to cut ties with them. I am divorced and was abused by my ex partner. I am independent and have my own house now. I am in a relationship my new partner works away. He is a good person but I find him very arrogant and he disrespects my feelings. He made an arrangement without checking with me first about dinner plans at his friends place. He is staying at his friends place and his friend works away as well, the friends girlfriend doesn't work she stays at home. He never told me that he is staying there while his friend is working away, I had to find out myself. Then he made arrangements behind my back for dinner there where it would be just us three without his friend. I was furious when he told me that so I cancelled the plans. I told him I am studying and catching up with new friends from a mental health group and I will talk to him after the weekend. He kept on calling me and I explained to him how I felt. He did apologise but also said he can't promise something like this wont happen again. Then he said his phone will be off for 2 days because he is working in a mining pit. I find it suspicious it's been 3 days and no contact. I am a proud person and wont call him. I dont know what to do or expect. I feel lonely and dont have many people to talk to that I can trust. He was adopted and divorced a couple of years ago. He has suffered with symptoms of mental illness since he was younger and threatens that things will trigger him. He gives 100% to his kids and to me. He spoils me a lot and is full of surprises. He likes to play jokes and I dont find it funny sometimes. It feels like he is messing with my mind. He sends me messages and when I talk about it he will deny what he said but then I will show him his message to tell him he is lying. It feels like he always wants to know where I am and what I am doing. I feel drained and tired and can't talk to people that I can trust. I am so confused because he is a good person but I feel I cant trust him because he lies & disrespects me. Am I in the wrong?

CaramelCrisp Feels like no good choice
  • replies: 2

My relationships are definitely taking a strain because of physical and mental problems. And i need people more than ever but for i dont feel i can safely be this way around them to expand on that, i have lost this month people who i love so deeply. ... View more

My relationships are definitely taking a strain because of physical and mental problems. And i need people more than ever but for i dont feel i can safely be this way around them to expand on that, i have lost this month people who i love so deeply. We had plans to move in together only for everything to end this month. After a while of distance they said there was problems between us they tried to fix on their own and cant. Theyre living the life we dreamed of without me now. I still know them which sometimes feels like more than i deserve knowing that i hurt them but i shouldnt complain lest i encourage one of the only things keeping me going to completely cut me off. I dont have negative feelings towards them they did what they had to but my heart is broken and i wish they couldve told me what was wrong. I feel like that wouldve been better. Or at least could have been. But they made the decision they did so then theres a friend group i largely havent seen since december. Sometimes i would drop out of plans or look unwell during them because of my mental health and disabilities and that makes me feel insecure too. Even if my mental health improves im probably always going to have these chronic pains. But i guess being less than 100% is too much for them so as much as i want to meet up again im so scared. I will just hurt people more if dinner upsets my stomach and i need to sit to the side for a bit. Its more complicated than that. I know there are people in the group who care, and its possible the ones who trigger traa not 24 hours old or seem to not have the same interest in my existence they do the rest of the group do. But at its core i feel i need friends but I also know there are other people. I am meeting new people but im in too much pain to do my part in encouraging those relationships grow. And i worry eventually I’ll hurt my other friends just like i did both of the above. Ive never not lost someone.

Butterfly_39 Downward spiral again
  • replies: 2

Hi All I was here a few years ago after a break-up & I was suffering depression due to it. On the day he broke up with me, I saw messages on his phone & he was texting another woman behind my back (I did not snoop, he opened his phone in front of me ... View more

Hi All I was here a few years ago after a break-up & I was suffering depression due to it. On the day he broke up with me, I saw messages on his phone & he was texting another woman behind my back (I did not snoop, he opened his phone in front of me and texted her in front of me). I don't know any of the details of how long this was going on. He started acting strange about 3 weeks before we broke up & blamed it on his mental health. I felt sorry for him & was very worried about him. I can only pinpoint it to be at that time. It took me a few weeks after the break-up to ask him about the text messages. He has never told me anything or even admitted to anything. Instead, I got some standard response & got blocked everywhere. It was pretty devastating for me. I was heartbroken & in a bad way for a long time. I got no answers but they ended up together so I figure that's the answer right there. Since then, I worked really hard to get out of depression. I have not dated since as I was not in the headspace to do that. Every time I tried, I backed away from the idea. The idea of getting hurt again scares me. I was also cheated on before my last relationship & stolen from, & my ex knew about it &, as he had been in a similar situation, I was silly enough to have thought he wouldn't do it to me if he had experienced it himself. About a year ago I landed a job that I thought was great. It has been in the last few months that I have noticed a culture of bullying. In the last week, I have become one of the targets. Unfortunately, my mental health has started to deteriorate. This is not a knee-jerk reaction but a thought that I have had for a few weeks now before I started to get targeted. Nobody knows that I am looking at leaving so this is not the reason why I am being targeted now. My mental health though is worrying me. I feel myself concentrating on how bad things are. During a moment of weakness, I went onto my ex-boyfriends social media & he is still with this woman & they recently got engaged. The overwhelming feelings of hurt I felt from that, I felt like a burden & a failure, & I was thinking to myself why does he get to be happy after betraying me with her? Meanwhile, I can't even go on a date after what he did to me. I felt my body get hot and I was shaking when I saw it. Lesson is, never look him up again. This has now contributed to my downward spiral. I thought I had moved on. I am sorry for the long story and thank you for reading.

rhinoceros Where to from here? Left an abusive relationship, dealing with collateral damage.
  • replies: 1

Hi everyone I left my ex nearly 7 months ago now. Based on the reading and research I've been doing, it appears she was a covert-malignant narcissist. I tried everything I could to make the relationship work, but in the end nothing I did was enough. ... View more

Hi everyone I left my ex nearly 7 months ago now. Based on the reading and research I've been doing, it appears she was a covert-malignant narcissist. I tried everything I could to make the relationship work, but in the end nothing I did was enough. I was with this person for 5 1/2 years. I spent nearly all that time in fight/flight/freeze mode, not knowing what mood she would be in on a given day, what was expected from me, or whether she'd be kind to me or cold and silent. There was a lot of emotional/verbal/psychological abuse, where I felt completely dehumanised at times. I left because the mental health toll the relationship was taking meant I was becoming so depressed that I no longer felt safe. When I left her I had to deal with stalking etc. It was very scary. I'm now slowly on the path of recovery. I'm getting therapy. My stress levels are nowhere near as high any more. My ex has left me alone now. I've made positive changes to my lifestyle i.e getting exercise, trying to stay social as much as I can. The collateral damage is complete lack of confidence and self esteem. She took all that away. I think about the possibility starting a new relationship for example, and I find just the thought of it completely terrifying. I don't trust anyone. Additionally my ex was very controlling. Before her I had many female friends. I lost touch with many of them, so my social circle is small now. Mentally I feel fatigued. I'm only 29 but I honestly feel like this relationship too about 20 years off my life. I'm mentally exhausted. Has anyone else had this kind of experience? How did you move on? Is it even possible to trust/love again? I apologies for whinging! I'm having a bad day today and trying to make sense of it all.

Doberman38 Dad doesn't take urgent issues seriously, gets angry when we want them addressed
  • replies: 5

This doesn't apply to everything, and I know that certainly in an emergency he wouldn't hesitate, but when it comes to the electrical and plumbing systems of the house he shows little desire to get them fixed, despite numerous problems. A pipe has be... View more

This doesn't apply to everything, and I know that certainly in an emergency he wouldn't hesitate, but when it comes to the electrical and plumbing systems of the house he shows little desire to get them fixed, despite numerous problems. A pipe has been leaking water for ages, while lightbulbs are failing one by one and our safety switch has tripped multiple times. He hardly takes anything I say about these things seriously, because he attributes it all to my anxiety and thinks I'm just being influenced by my mum. In fact, he becomes LESS inclined to do something about it. My concerns are not delegitimised just because I have anxiety, and when I bring it up to him I am calm but firm, NOT panicking, but he treats it all the same. I love him but I've had enough of my input being invalidated in this way.

bethysocks92 Having an avoidant and emotionally unavailable partner
  • replies: 1

I never thought I could feel such sadness, turmoil, heartbreak and a lack of self worth and appreciation with someone. I have been with my partner for nearly 6 months and it has been a soaring rollercoaster of emotions every single day. In the beginn... View more

I never thought I could feel such sadness, turmoil, heartbreak and a lack of self worth and appreciation with someone. I have been with my partner for nearly 6 months and it has been a soaring rollercoaster of emotions every single day. In the beginning he pursued me and wanted only me. We then wanted a relationship. Little did he know what was involved. For someone who hasn't been in a relationship with someone for more than 3 months, hadn't lived alone for majority of his life and adores his personal time and space, this was daunting to him. He didn't realise this until being in a relationship with me. My emotional and physical needs are not being met right now. He has his own issues/ development he needs to process and work through. I am trying really hard to understand. Being an empath I'm drawn in and just want to help, but sometimes this is at the expense of me too. I don't know what to do. I feel like I should leave him be and let me be for my own sanity and to regain my sense of self worth and happiness back, but I care for him deeply. But why stay if he can't give me what I need right now? I know he is emotionally unavailable right now. So, here's one to anyone out there experiencing or going through the same or similar thing.. how do you cope? what are some strategies? what do or did you do in your situation?