Relationship and family issues

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

FAQ

Find answers to some of the more frequently asked questions on the Forums.

Forums guidelines

Our guidelines keep the Forums a safe place for people to share and learn information.

Pinned discussions

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

Anonymous999 Feeling alone and helpless
  • replies: 1

I’m not very good at explaining this well, so here we go: 2 years ago my struggles with an eating disorder began and it ruined all of my friendships and stopped me from participating in my sport which is my favourite thing in the entire world. It has... View more

I’m not very good at explaining this well, so here we go: 2 years ago my struggles with an eating disorder began and it ruined all of my friendships and stopped me from participating in my sport which is my favourite thing in the entire world. It has taken 2 years to finally gain a healthy relationship with food but I still can’t compete in my sport which is so hard to watch everyone else excel whilst I’ve been stuck on the sidelines for years. I graduated high school 2 years ago and have not spoken to my old ‘friends’ ever since because a lot went on and I wasn’t treated well by anyone. So much has gone on in the last couple of years and I have just been stuck in such a dark place and am really struggling to move on from all the things that occurred because I still can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. I had no one to help me through that time and still have no one. Every time I open up to someone (which is so so so hard to do) I get left on read and never spoken to again. I feel so alone and helpless and really don’t know what to do. I just want someone to love me and make me feel like I belong in this world, but no one understands me even takes the time to understand me.

Jojosdrowning Watching the man I love fade away.
  • replies: 2

Hi, I have been with my partner for 4yrs. The most caring supportive man I've ever meet and a love I never knew possible. Very amicable with our exs. We have a lot to do with them as we share 5 kids between us. This changed with his ex unexpectedly 3... View more

Hi, I have been with my partner for 4yrs. The most caring supportive man I've ever meet and a love I never knew possible. Very amicable with our exs. We have a lot to do with them as we share 5 kids between us. This changed with his ex unexpectedly 3 months My partner still owed $ from their settlement which they had agreed payment over 10yrs. Its been 6 yrs and she started to demand the last lump sum. She said she made some misteaks with her money. We had to go to bank to borrow but said we'd get to her Asap. We borrowed $ of parents to give give a lump sum to get her through while waiting on bank. Then emails started. Demands and threats of getting dhs, police, cps and lawyers involvin. Then her taking a domestic violents AVO. She made change with child support to have 100% custody stating kids didn't want to see him. They just finished a 3month stay with us while she was in hospital. Everything went Great. Long story short she did put out an AVO. We were not contacted by any departments, and were so supprised by this all. We were working on the money, she knew that and we have no idea how and why its all lead to this. His now the most broken man I know. He can't see his children which is destroying him and the AVO is nothing but a false claim. We've had to fork out $ for legal advise who said its not worth fighting the AVO as long as he abides by it without admissions. It won't affect him legally. The kids call, missing him and wanting to c him. But no she has an AVO. His just beside himself. I worry so much for him. His such a strong, gentle, caring man and she's destroyed him and his relationship with his kids.He worries they have no idea whats going on. Due to AVO though he can't do or say anything! Im sorry for the long post, I needed to get this out. After investigating and speaking to people this kind of thing happens alot. It kills me to see people put others through this kind of thing and for what!? It happens to both women and men. And is a massive issue that plays on peoples mental health. What can I do? I feel so helpless. I'm watching the man I love slowly dying inside for lies, manipulation and money. Thats what it seems like. His ex has affected so many others within the family because it's not just about her and her issues with him all of a sudden. It affects so many more. We trying to see physiologist but so far there's months waiting lists and legal fees continue to climb. Open to any advice or suggestions! Thanks for reading.

Debbie2021 Advice needed
  • replies: 2

Hi all I am over 50 and divorced 5 years ago. Not interested in dating until recently.. super happy and love my life. ... very very positive person snd happy in my own space. I have been dating a man for 3 months. Very deep person (unlike me) and hav... View more

Hi all I am over 50 and divorced 5 years ago. Not interested in dating until recently.. super happy and love my life. ... very very positive person snd happy in my own space. I have been dating a man for 3 months. Very deep person (unlike me) and have such a connection and fallen in love feeling lucky but cautious. tonight I find out by accident (long story) that he is on medication for anxiety and depression. He hadn’t shared that. Such a deep connection that I want to pursue... but looking for our advice Please share your experiences.

Girlfriend_to_a_cop My boyfriend is new to the police force
  • replies: 4

I am 21y/0 female, my boyfriend has just joined the police force. For about 5 years I have struggled with depression and anxiety, my partner struggles from mild anxiety. I have concerns about him being a cop just like I have concerns about most thing... View more

I am 21y/0 female, my boyfriend has just joined the police force. For about 5 years I have struggled with depression and anxiety, my partner struggles from mild anxiety. I have concerns about him being a cop just like I have concerns about most things, I have read many articles and the book “Emotionsl survival for law enforcement” an excellent book I might add. I am looking for pre assistance into understanding what he will be seeing and how he is going to cope in the work force, with shift work and the trauma that police officers face daily. I know it might be a few years before he sees anything traumatising or that will give him PTSD, but I want to be prepared. Is there any way I can prepare for the future? Thank you in advanced.

DaniellaM Struggling to cope after relationship ending
  • replies: 2

Hi all, this is my first time posting here. Just a couple of days ago, my boyfriend of almost 3 years decided to end the relationship. He told me that he loves me dearly as a person, but is no longer in love with me. I am really struggling to accept ... View more

Hi all, this is my first time posting here. Just a couple of days ago, my boyfriend of almost 3 years decided to end the relationship. He told me that he loves me dearly as a person, but is no longer in love with me. I am really struggling to accept that it is over and I will most likely never see him again. This was my first long term and serious relationship, and being alone all of a sudden is proving harder to manage than I thought. As of right now, I can barely eat or leave my bed and do not have the motivation to return to work. I feel as though my life has fallen apart, as he was the most important thing to me and helped me so much with my mental health. I am also struggling severely with feelings of guilt and shame, as I was unloyal to him in the earlier stages of the relationship. He found out and immediately wanted to end it, but I begged and pleaded for him to give me another chance. I said I wanted to change and fix things (which was not a lie and I was never unfaithful again after those incidents). He told me when he broke up with me that he forgives me for everything that I did, but was never able to move on within himself. However, I'm very confused as to why he chose to end the relationship now, almost 2 years after what happened. Was he not in love with me all this time and just pretending because he didn't want to hurt me? I struggle to believe that he didn't have feelings for me, as up to only just a couple of weeks ago he was making a regular effort to see me, showing affection and telling me he loved me. I just need some advice. I am in strong denial right now and can't stop thinking about the possibility of him changing his mind and coming back to me. But I also know that getting my hopes up like that remove all chances of me accepting it and moving on. What should I do?

RedRose123 In your opinion should I feel guilty because of this?
  • replies: 13

I just had a bit of an argument with my Grandmother in law. She was saying that retail workers and cafe staff etc should never be able to have an off moment. Eg have a slight tone, seem flustered or unhappy. No matter how customers are behaving towar... View more

I just had a bit of an argument with my Grandmother in law. She was saying that retail workers and cafe staff etc should never be able to have an off moment. Eg have a slight tone, seem flustered or unhappy. No matter how customers are behaving towards them. This had me very upset. And I tried to just ignore it. But then the next topic of conversation came up and she said something along the lines about how if someone is being arrogant to you that you shouldn’t stand for it. (I can’t remember exact words and there was a lot more detail in the conversations but I’m trying to be brief). So I said, “you just said retail workers should just put up with it” and mentioned a story about me being in the situation of someone abusing me when I was very young working retail and witnessing people being treated badly in retail on other occasions. She just tried to brush it off saying. I worked as a waitress and I just took it etc. I got quite upset and left the room. I got as upset as I did for a few reasons. One - that topic upset me, because I don’t like how people think they can treat retail staff like garbage. Two - she can be not very nice to retail and cafe workers herself. Three - she was being hypercritical in my opinion. Four - she kept saying I worked as a waitress for years and I was always nice no matter how I was treated etc. I’m worried I seemed too crazy about it. I have severe anxiety problems (which she and other family members who were there know). They had been talking about topic after topic of things that were really stressful to me the whole time we were together so I was already on edge. I tried to stay calm. But I just had to voice my opinion. And I think I came across like a crazy person with how upset I got. There are also some past issues my husband and I have had with his grandparents that had nothing to do with today. And we have been trying to keep piece for his mums sake. So I was on edge about my feelings about that stuff as well. I feel like I just kind of exploded a little. I didn’t yell. But I was obviously cranky. My husband agrees with me. His mum understand why I was upset. But I just feel guilty that I upset his Grandmother and feel like everyone else thinks I’m crazy

Mistress Should I call it quits or keep paddling
  • replies: 5

Hi everyone so long story short I’ve been in relationship for almost 12 years we have 2 kids together and our lives have had more downs then any ups. so when I was 17 I fell pregnant only knowing him for 3months he never left and pretty much moved ri... View more

Hi everyone so long story short I’ve been in relationship for almost 12 years we have 2 kids together and our lives have had more downs then any ups. so when I was 17 I fell pregnant only knowing him for 3months he never left and pretty much moved right in now I had mental health issues prior and had my mum who has mental health and I had to deal with her and she was very controlling. during my pregnancy he would work away send me all his money and my mum would take it (my fault for Being so controlled) i also got a payout for a car accident which she tried to take which I didn’t let which then made her kick us out 3 times when my daughter was only 5months now we finally moved out with the clothes on our backs and with the money I had I built a house and home. This is when he then decided to not work and just play video games. At 21 he emotionally cheated on me with some person via internet because of distance he couldn’t physically but he made it clear that relationship was more important then me and when I tried to leave then he forcefully took our daughter away and said I could leave but she couldn’t so I stayed. ( while this was going on I was dealing with mental abuse by my mother) i worked on and off as i can’t seem to be able to do home and work without burning out. my house is always a mess and he only sits down on the pc and comes out to complain about the mess we had another child in 2018 and before that he was gambling I had to deal with his crazy mother who abused me and lived free with us. And then in 2019 I found out he was messing with a. Chick at work Now 2021 he works comes home sits on the pc complains yells at the kids always snapping at us but laughing at the ppl n game he plays with cause it’s playing with a bunch of male and female ppl centerlinkntook $300 off my payment and now I get only $500 each week and $400 gose to rent so financially it’s hard my relationship hasn’t made me happy as he gives me no affection only when he wants he gives more affection to the ppl and game we started relationship counciling but. His walls always gose up I don’t know I am just so tired I’ve tried to fix me but over the years nothing I do helps and I am wondering if I am trying to put water in a bucket that has holes and pointless i can’t believe that I wasted all my youth for nothing and that he claims he loves me but I think loving someone n means doing things for them not always refusing to lift a finger? I am falling apart

akajackal I really need to talk to someone
  • replies: 3

I have things going on in my life, I don't really have anyone to share with. I'm a father of a 8yr old boy and a 7yr old girl. I work long hours. Trying to meet both ends. My wife she looks after house hold, works casual, looks after the kids. I lost... View more

I have things going on in my life, I don't really have anyone to share with. I'm a father of a 8yr old boy and a 7yr old girl. I work long hours. Trying to meet both ends. My wife she looks after house hold, works casual, looks after the kids. I lost both my parents they were gone abruptly. Also in a time when I needed them the most. My brother is an addict. I did not have anytime to grieve for them. I never caught a break. I didn't have my wife or anyone to share what I went through. I had to keep going, providing for the family. Then you have all the ups and downs in life, from loosing job, training, studying, finding another one, then you got covid 19. The only person I could turn to was my wife. Whenever I wanted to open up, I was told being over dramatic, or not giving her more importance even when my parents are not there. Everytime I try to fix things, it's these small bits of faults that she draws out that make things worse. I've lost the motivation to keep going, after all, what's left for me is my family. If I'm only as good as just a money making machine, what good am I for? I hate myself as a person.

Mech Overwhelming - financial, disaster house, job, relationship and family
  • replies: 3

Hi everyone, I am 24 and although my problems aren't massive, there are so many that I can't wrap my head around it all and it's driving me insane. I feel like I've created most of these issues as well. Has anyone been in a similar situation? ... 1. ... View more

Hi everyone, I am 24 and although my problems aren't massive, there are so many that I can't wrap my head around it all and it's driving me insane. I feel like I've created most of these issues as well. Has anyone been in a similar situation? ... 1. My partner and I moved into our brand new house over Christmas 2020. the entire year it took and the last few months have been so stressful and exhausting. So many things went wrong and I spent hours every single day on the phone and in stores to keep things in check... We are now dealing with the possibility of our house having to be knocked down and rebuilt but it is all at a stand still currently and I'm struggling to find anyone who can help and support me through this... both professionally and emotionally. I feel like I pushed my partner to buy and build, and I chose the builder, so I feel like this is all my fault my relationship is so strained and my partners parents who haven't worked for a long time having been living with us only 10 weeks after we finally moved into our house... so they have been with us for a while... his grandmother is a controlling narcissist and has just 'told' us she wants his grandfather's ashes buried in our garden because she is also living from place to place... while all of this is going on. We have our spare room and personal robe full of stuff she dumped on us because she didn't want to carry it around. I have had to tell my father that he can not come to our wedding next year(which i feel i pushed my partner to agree to) as my mother and my family will disown me. We had a difficult childhood and I don't blame them. I'm not sure why I have gotten back in contact with him but that's a different story again.. I feel like I started wedding planning because everything else was crashing down around us and I wanted something exciting to happen. My mother isn't very supportive of the wedding and I think that's why. my work has moved me from a place I really enjoyed, to one I really hate, because I took a week off to deal with lawyers regarding our house and a bad flu.. I have gained 15kg over the last 12 months from stress eating. I am so unhappy with myself and my body because of this I try to eat healthy, I try breathing exercises, I try to self care with hobbies and spending time with my animals but nothing is working. Every time I take anti depression or anxiety pills I have bad adverse effects. I've hit a wall and I don't know how to go around it

Cath58 Estranged from Adult daughters since 2013
  • replies: 3

I have been estranged/cut off from my two daughters since 2013 after an emotional separation and divorce from their father. It was a difficult time for all of us. I thought long and hard before leaving their father and our marriage of 26 years. He wa... View more

I have been estranged/cut off from my two daughters since 2013 after an emotional separation and divorce from their father. It was a difficult time for all of us. I thought long and hard before leaving their father and our marriage of 26 years. He was an alcoholic/gambler with a lady 'friend'. The 'lady friend' was the last straw for me, as at times he did not come home. My daughters, at the time of my leaving, were 22 & 25 and living with their partners. I was an emotional mess and had a breakdown. I made many errors in the early days that I see now with the passing of time. Over the years I have attempted to reconcile through letters, but have been met with a cold wall of silence. My early letters were full of apologies, taking the blame etc.. and asking for them to talk to me and explain why they had cut me off with no forewarning or discussion. These letters I had to send via their grandmother (fathers mother) as I had/have no address for them, no phone numbers as they had/have blocked/changed numbers. Blocked me on all social media. Just wiped me completely. It is now 8 years and still nothing. The last few years I have sent a card for their birthdays with a simply message, nothing emotive. Things like 'let me know if you would like to have a coffee'. No long stories, no self pity, no trying to explain, nothing along those lines. I have heard through one of their cousins, that my daughters are not talking to each. It appears we have all gone separate ways. They have cut themselves off from all of my family as well, just the one cousin has contact with my eldest daughter - but little contact. My eldest married in Oct 2019 and apparently her father did not go and her and her sister had a fight the night before the wedding and she left during the night. Such a mess! I have done a lot of work with my psychologist and a lot of introspection. I have moved on with my life and now have a wonderful partner of 5 years and strong relationship. I concentrate on that these days. My question is, do I just leave them alone even if it means forever, or wait until them reach out to me? I feel I am in a loose/loose situation where if I don't try occasionally, they see it as me not caring, if I do try, then I am not respecting their 'boundaries'. Appreciate any insight others may be able to provide.