Relationship and family issues

Anything to do with managing relationships and family, including parenting, separation, loneliness, divorce, family and friendships.

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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.

All discussions

Rbarts Feeling like a cloud is over me after breakup
  • replies: 7

Hello all hope you're doing well over the holidays, This started just over a week ago when my girlfriend of 7 months broke up with me. She said her mental health wasn't great and didn't want it to affect me on top of a few other things (not enough in... View more

Hello all hope you're doing well over the holidays, This started just over a week ago when my girlfriend of 7 months broke up with me. She said her mental health wasn't great and didn't want it to affect me on top of a few other things (not enough in common, two too different people), and it was a one-sided but mutual breakup and we still wanted to be friends. The week that followed was terrible and I was constantly doubting myself and what I could have done better to prevent it as well as remembering everything that was good during the relationship and missing it. I would overthink everything and contradict myself (thinking I was alright, to I want her back, to I want to be friends), this made me feel sick and exhausted all while I was messaging her. I eventaully told her all this and other things I felt and decided to put some distance between us and stop messaging for a bit. That helped and felt like a weight lifted off for a bit. But now I'm slowly getting this feeling of anxiety and something I cant describe. I'm now worried about if I made a mistake, I constantly think about what shes thinking, if she has already moved on and is talking with someone and that our 7 months together meant nothing. I constantly wish she would try and ask how im going or reach out to me again. At the same time I'm trying to reassure myself that it's fine and I'm enough and I'll find someone new when I'm ready. It's getting exhausting again and I miss being happy before all this. I've tried distracting myself with learning piano, working out and watching shows but it's not helping in the long run and I dont know how to cope with it. I just want my headspace to be how it was when it as good and not full of negative thoughts, doubts and imaginary scenarios.

EightPaws How to Meet New Friends?
  • replies: 2

I am nearing 50, separated (and single), and have two teenages 50% of the time. Prior to separation I didn't prioritise myself. I worked full time, looked after the kids when I wasn't working, and took care of the housework. Any social engagements we... View more

I am nearing 50, separated (and single), and have two teenages 50% of the time. Prior to separation I didn't prioritise myself. I worked full time, looked after the kids when I wasn't working, and took care of the housework. Any social engagements were through my parenter. Post separation is a lonely place because I lost my identity and friends during my relationship. I'm trying to get back on track but I have very low self esteem and believe I don't have anything to offer friends. I really want to find meaningful friendships with like minded people. However, I'm a bit of an unusual woman in that I like doing things that are more masculine (outdoor / practical stuff). In additional I am extremely uncomfortable in social situations unless it is of a practical nature with a purpose. I get really anxious when I have to be social and I find reasons to run away. I would really like to hear suggestions for how to meet new friends, and how to do this in a way where I feel comfortable.

Tinalea20 How can they move on so fast
  • replies: 12

It’s been 3 and a half mths since we broke up from a 4 yr relationship, I have just found out he is talking to other women. I can’t even look at another man. I’m heart is broken, but suppose you don’t ask questions if you might not like that answer. ... View more

It’s been 3 and a half mths since we broke up from a 4 yr relationship, I have just found out he is talking to other women. I can’t even look at another man. I’m heart is broken, but suppose you don’t ask questions if you might not like that answer. I’m having trouble dealing with this, how can he move on so fast.

Steve_B2 Hello
  • replies: 4

Hello I'm new here. I have been separated from my family for 65 days now and haven't seen my kids . My wife of 20yrs wants to leave me . She wants to keep the kids with limited visitation. I don't know how I will get through this.

Hello I'm new here. I have been separated from my family for 65 days now and haven't seen my kids . My wife of 20yrs wants to leave me . She wants to keep the kids with limited visitation. I don't know how I will get through this.

Guest927 My sister
  • replies: 3

I can't say anything around her. Anything I say or do she comments on. I can never just enjoy myself without her giving judgy eyes like some high school bully. She gives me this stupid dumb face and it immediately makes me cry. Like... immediately. A... View more

I can't say anything around her. Anything I say or do she comments on. I can never just enjoy myself without her giving judgy eyes like some high school bully. She gives me this stupid dumb face and it immediately makes me cry. Like... immediately. And she knows it, she's told me she enjoys seeing my reactions of anger/sadness and I hate her. What goodness does she deserve from me after all these years of me not doing anything to hurt her. I Try and make conversation. I try and do things with her. But she just shuts me off acting like I'm being crazy. I was never cruel to her, I don't make fun of her when she's sad. She has no empathy toward me. She made me feel suicidal when I was arouns 14. I was very sensitive and couldn't take it. She used to threaten me. And she would have been 11. She's just cruel and mean not only to me but rude to my parents. I'm scared of her touching me when I tell her every time to stop. I watch my words and try not to make her angry. She'll always win, no matter what I say or do she always wins. Because she has comebacks, because she'll just yell whenever I try and speak, because she'll give me that stupid face and I just shut up. Even if I hurt her she'd hurt me back. Harder. And I'd cry and I'd lose. But sometimes, when she feels like it, she becomes very nice and generous. Which means when I tell my mum I think she hates me, she brings up those positive times.

white knight Tolerance of other people part 4- in laws
  • replies: 2

I was raised in a family that accepted say a son in law as a son. In fact my parents even after a short time with my sister just dating a guy would say "you are a son to us". Now part of the reason for this was that my parent were afraid of my sister... View more

I was raised in a family that accepted say a son in law as a son. In fact my parents even after a short time with my sister just dating a guy would say "you are a son to us". Now part of the reason for this was that my parent were afraid of my sister getting pregnant outside of marriage so they wanted her married quickly. I wont mention too much about how I felt in having a future brother in law living in our house that I barely knew and was competing for! Especially after my blood brother suicided a few weeks earlier and my future BIL even wore my deceased brother clothes. This and other events made me think - how should we treat our in-laws? Decades later I've come to a conclusion based also on 4 long term relationships including two marriages and 3 step children. In my view you marry or in a relationship with a person (lets call them a spouse) but you didnt fall in love with their family members. For this reason alone you have justification to keep some distance between you and your in-laws, not that you need justification however your spouse could want you to become closer to his/her family. As above, I think there is plenty of reasons not to treat in-laws like true blood. It is insulting to your own children. The distance mentioned earlier also includes living with them. I've seen the destruction of families brought about due to the son in law and daughter residing with mum and dad so they can save for a house. It has a high risk and permanent damage can occur. Everyone has their own ideals about helping the young adults achieve. I'll just say this- hard work in any manner didnt hurt anyone. Hard work allow those doing it to appreciate the fruits of their labour. Also parents that have worked hard and around retirement age should have the right to relaxation including the security of financial freedom so they can enjoy their approaching twilight years. Those times will come for their children. Your thoughts? TonyWK

barty567 I made a mistake on NYE and am now being 'iced out' by my girlfriend
  • replies: 7

Hi all, first time poster. I'm currently in a stable, loving relationship with my girlfriend though we have had occasional rough patches like the one we are currently going through now. Last night my girlfriend came around after her work for NYE, and... View more

Hi all, first time poster. I'm currently in a stable, loving relationship with my girlfriend though we have had occasional rough patches like the one we are currently going through now. Last night my girlfriend came around after her work for NYE, and we had a pretty relaxed evening with no drama. We were originally planning to go out to see the midnight fireworks in person, but we were watching a movie and lost track of time. By the time the fireworks started we could only see then from my apartment window, and honestly the view was pretty bad and she was pretty dissapointed. I apologised for the mistake, but she immediately she became very cold, went to sleep, and has practically blanked me all of new years day. I've messaged her saying I'm there for her if she needs me for anything, but have just received unusually cold replies assuring me she is fine. Similar situations have occured in the past with smaller issues, and while I understand I am at fault, I'm wondering if anyone has any ideas how I can prevent these sorts of scenarios from occuring in the future. I also get very depressed and feel guilt in these scenarios, but am not sure how to talk to her about this in a way that in non-confrontational since I don't want to invalidate her own feelings. I just want both of us to be able to talk about these things so we can build a stronger relationship. I appreciate your time in reading and replying

Goanna02 Miserable
  • replies: 6

Hi, first time using this forum. Hope I’m posting this in the correct area. I’m feeling so miserable. My husband has his birthday today. I’m meant to go to a bbq with his friends and their partners who all know each other. I’m not feeling well at all... View more

Hi, first time using this forum. Hope I’m posting this in the correct area. I’m feeling so miserable. My husband has his birthday today. I’m meant to go to a bbq with his friends and their partners who all know each other. I’m not feeling well at all, I’m teary and feel like I should go along with him. I’m not great at socialising at the best of times, and am feeling really bad if I don’t go with him. He has already left and is waiting for me to turn up. I feel as though I don’t fit in with his group of friends as am not a big drinker (they all are). I’m just so sad and tired and have no energy. He suffers from back pain and is normally down and negative and snappy and says he doesn’t want to live every day. This brings me even more sadness and I feel guilty if I don’t go and try to enjoy this night with him. I am normally feeling down most days, but today I feel 10 times worse. Sorry for the big essay. Does anyone else feel like this with their partner/husband?

EightPaws Raising Teens After Separation - Threat of Leaving
  • replies: 2

I posted recently that my 13 year old son stopped seeing me. Nothing has changed with that sadly but I'm still hopeful. Reflecting on why my he doesn't want to see me, I've been thinking about what I will do differently when (if) he comes back. One t... View more

I posted recently that my 13 year old son stopped seeing me. Nothing has changed with that sadly but I'm still hopeful. Reflecting on why my he doesn't want to see me, I've been thinking about what I will do differently when (if) he comes back. One thing I'm really concerned with is how to 'parent' and not upset him again. The concern is that if I do or say anything which is out of line with his views and desires, he'll just disappear again to my former partners house. I feel I have to let him rule the roost (so to speak) in order to have him in my life. I know this all comes down to how I communicate but unfortunately, despite years of trying to become better at that, I am still blunt and direct. I don't think I can magically become the person he wants as much as I wish that is possible. I wonder if anyone else has experience with this kind of issue and can offer advice?

PHM Seasonal breakup & possible emotional affair
  • replies: 1

Hi all, A supportive friend of mine recommended the BB forums to help with an issue I've been dealing with this week, so Hi and thanks for listening. My wife recently decided she wanted to end the marriage. While the news was a heartbreaker, I felt t... View more

Hi all, A supportive friend of mine recommended the BB forums to help with an issue I've been dealing with this week, so Hi and thanks for listening. My wife recently decided she wanted to end the marriage. While the news was a heartbreaker, I felt the timing was also an extra twist. I admit this year has had its' stresses. Covid, juggling a family, different work schedules and work loads and not having much time for each other. The communication was short and time together less so. So tension and stress grew with both of us. I tried to understand this, tried to make the best of our situation and kept moving forward, but it now appears she started to take it personally. Any issues we had I, maybe naively, thought we could fix with some extra attention and TLC. Those who knew us thought so too. But it felt like only one was trying. In the fallout she's used my negative instances from being tired/stressed/frustrated to characterise me as a person. Which she's stated as the reason she can't be with me anymore. I mentioned often, especially in recent months that we need to connect more. She seemed to agree and we moved forward. Even in the weeks leading up to the announcement she seemed OK with me and the relationship. But in the week prior she went cold. My children noticed it and, in the wake, I noticed an unknown male name commenting on her Social pages in that time, with my wife being very friendly in return. I asked her who he was and he was a childhood friend. I later found they'd been DMing non stop during that week and she'd been calling him for hours on end. All during the time I was desperate to talk/connect with her, with no interest. It really hurts the way she prioritised things. I understand this is part of an emotional affair and it really hurts. Since the break, she hasn't let up on the other connection and, while we've agreed to counselling, I'm at a loss how to handle it. I do love her and know any issues we had were workable, but I feel trust will be a big obstacle, especially while she's still wrapped up in this happier connection. Sorry for the length and thanks for hearing me out. If anybody has been in a similar spot, or if there's something there somebody could comment on (good or bad) I'd appreciate it.