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

Lost27 Scared I dont love him anymore but love being with him
  • replies: 3

My boyfriend and I had a very big fight and he hurt me and now i feel weird. Is it normal to feel off after a big fight. I still want to be with him he makes me laugh, feel safe, and excepts me for me and love being with him but at the same time i st... View more

My boyfriend and I had a very big fight and he hurt me and now i feel weird. Is it normal to feel off after a big fight. I still want to be with him he makes me laugh, feel safe, and excepts me for me and love being with him but at the same time i still feel off. Like my feeling and somthing feels different. I'm hoping i just need adjusting back to normal. I'm scared I dont want to be with him anymore because i love being with him. But when i think of the future or marriage now it scares me. Where it didnt before.

Bondsie89 Depression, anxiety & a toxic break up
  • replies: 2

Hi Everyone, Much like alot of us here , I'm a bit lost and not sure where to turn to at this point. I've known for years i've had depression, generalised anxiety, and alot of OCD tendencies lately that I've attributed to stress. I'm going through a ... View more

Hi Everyone, Much like alot of us here , I'm a bit lost and not sure where to turn to at this point. I've known for years i've had depression, generalised anxiety, and alot of OCD tendencies lately that I've attributed to stress. I'm going through a really heinous break up, which is exacerbating all of the above. My ex was verbally abusive, mentally degrading, gaslighting and controlling. After 2 years of ups and downs, and one particularly unforgiveable fight where she smashed several house items, punched the walls, and put her fist through a photo of us - then told me it was because i made her mad, I decided to get my stuff and stay with my sister. The ex sent nearly 300 messages being abusive, telling me to leave, everyone hates me, im miserable, im not depressed i just thrive on pity ect I was too scared to lodge a police report because i wanted to handle it civilly , and we had just purchased a dog together and i knew she would hold it over my head and lever let me see my pup again. She wouldnt let me take the dog. And now, because i refused to go to couples counselling with her because I have had enough, shes threatened to come and take my dog who is in my name, tried to embarrass me publicly by messaging friends and family telling them what she thinks about me, and has spent the last 4 hours sending further abusive and nasty messages. I dont respond to which she gets nastier and nastier. Im at the end of my rope. I'm sick of living in fear and worrying and feeling anxiety and sick when the phone rings or buzzes. I feel like im being over dramatic but i can't handle it anymore. Does anyone have any expertise to offer or tell me where I should have posted this? Thank you

Hiraeth24 Narcissism? love-bombing? feeling completely lost after years of failed relationships, trauma.
  • replies: 2

I am a lesbian & have had multiple unsuccessful relationships over the past few years After a traumatic 2.5 year relationship, 8 month late I met a girl who was 23 - I was 30, I usually date older. I was hesitant at first, she came across very mature... View more

I am a lesbian & have had multiple unsuccessful relationships over the past few years After a traumatic 2.5 year relationship, 8 month late I met a girl who was 23 - I was 30, I usually date older. I was hesitant at first, she came across very mature, we got on like a house on fire. 2 weeks later she asked me to be her gf, I was still not sure & told her this she responded "how do you know if you don't take the risk?” I have always been that person who would, so I agreed, but told her if I freaked out etc. to try be patient. We lasted 1.5 years, There were things that I didn't love that I just accepted, but I loved her, in mid/late 2020 my mum found out her SO of 10 years had been in an emotional affair, tried to attempt suicide, after this I shut down, I couldn’t be intimate with her,& whilst she tried to support me I knew this was a big issue for her. Before Xmas I came home after nightshift, she told me she no longer was in love with me & didn’t see a future with me, she up & left. I haven’t seen her since and was left to pack up all her things in my place. I was shell shocked. Naively about a month later I got on dating apps I was just seeking to be desired. I met a 38 year old who I connected with straight away. She said all the right things “She was too old for games and new exactly what she wanted, she had been there all before” we had an insane connection, she was really full on and very dominant and kept telling me to “keep up” but it was nice to be desired, within weeks she told me she was in love with me, saw a future with me, said if it wasn’t me it wasn’t anyone else, the 1st month was amazing, though I felt as soon as I developed some feelings she flipped. Would pick on me every discussion we had, felt like she didn’t like I had a voice, I had to practically beg for attention, & then it came out she said “I’ve completely back flipped 180, I don’t know why” I tried to piece every together, we continued to sleep together, but she wasn’t the same. There was red flags, I was just oblivious to them in my vulnerability. Last week, she blocks, deletes & erases me completely says I’m “too much” & that “people change” that she “never wants to hear from me again” whilst usually I can bounce back, I cannot shake this. I trusted her, I shared intimate details with her. I feel completely exposed. There are obviously more details to this which I’m happy to share further, just limited to words.

sebastiankyle LDR and a workplace crush
  • replies: 2

I have been in a long-term relationship for 5 years and things were going ok but there were many underlying issues. I didn't feel loved or appreciated, I felt like I was giving more than what I was receiving and there were significant intimacy issues... View more

I have been in a long-term relationship for 5 years and things were going ok but there were many underlying issues. I didn't feel loved or appreciated, I felt like I was giving more than what I was receiving and there were significant intimacy issues. I always wanted to bring it up but there was always something that was more important. My partner was always close to a breakdown. University, finances, burnout, work, family. I have always been the one supporting him so how could I add on to his stress tear down the only support that was keeping him together. Then COVID came around, my partner's father was dying and he had to leave the country. Cracks began to show and we grew more distant, my love language is physical touch and acts of service so an LDR was really pushing it. A year later I started work in a rural town and met a senior colleague at a dinner party. He was smart, funny, charming. I instantly had a crush. We became really good friends and hung out with the same group of colleagues. We even had similar names so people would occasionally mix us up from time to time because of the masks. We both loved movies so we used to watch movies together and banter over drinks. One night we had one too many drinks and passed out on the floor. I woke up holding him from behind and I pulled away, he woke up and we locked eyes. We gazed at each other for a long time before we both leaned in and kissed. Then suddenly we both stopped and confessed we were seeing someone. Turns out we were both in similar situations. Both in long-term relationships that were now an LDR and were not going very well. We decided to look past all that. For the next few months, we spent a lot of time together. He made me coffee in the mornings, I wrote letters every week and left them under his door at 1am so he'd find it in the morning. I had never been happier. When the time came for me to leave, I wrote him a long goodbye letter. In the end, I couldn't bear to leave and requested a contract extension under the pretense that I needed the money. He told me he had read the letter and he had feelings for me too. A couple of weeks later he left for Melbourne and wrote me a letter telling me how he felt. But his partner saw his letter and in 48 hours he dropped me. I understand that this was inevitable and I know we were in the wrong. But it doesn't hurt any less. It has been almost 2 months now, but I feel so lost, aimless, and broken. Everything hurts and I don't know what to do. Help

Guest_3256 My partner constantly accuses me of cheating.
  • replies: 10

Hi all. I've been with my partner (m25) for 10 months. He's my second serious relationship and it's been a rollercoaster of ups and downs ever since. I honestly put a lot of effort into trying to keep us going, trying new things, going out and keepin... View more

Hi all. I've been with my partner (m25) for 10 months. He's my second serious relationship and it's been a rollercoaster of ups and downs ever since. I honestly put a lot of effort into trying to keep us going, trying new things, going out and keeping the spark alive. On good days, he is amazing, cooks, laughs and we connect and bond really well. The issue is, that my partner will have days, maybe 2-3 times a week where he constantly accuses me of cheating and being unfaithful. He also will drink quite often which usually starts off good, then something snaps and he starts saying derogatory things, picks on me and blames me for a lot of things. He accuses me of being manipulative, that I gaslight and I'm not loyal. He will start off by saying "you know what done and you can't be honest." Then. He kicks me out and bombs my phone asking for space and that he can't be with someone he can't trust. In simple terms, I feel like I'm walking through a mine field ready to blow up. Any advise cheers.

Lolue Overwhelmed with life changes
  • replies: 4

Hi I am a young single female who is currently going through the process of buying my first home something that has been a lifelong dream of mine. (Context: grew up in a home that wasnt always financially stable and difficult times with my mum & Sis)... View more

Hi I am a young single female who is currently going through the process of buying my first home something that has been a lifelong dream of mine. (Context: grew up in a home that wasnt always financially stable and difficult times with my mum & Sis). Though this is an exciting time it has also caused me to become stressed about money as things will be tight over the next coming months, its been frustrating listening to family members give their advice on what suburb i should live in and whst type of property to buy. I know most of them mean well but i can tell some of them are pushing me to what they want and what suits them. Im proud that im doing this as a single but it has caused my depression to rear its ugly head. Im already lonely as i dfont have many friends and genuine connections. Part of the reason why i decided to buy was whenever i tried to move out and rent people kept bailing on me. I need stability so owning my own home gives me options if i meet a partner i can sell it or turn it into a investment. Or if i dont meet someone i might decide to adopt a child when im older having my own place will help if i decide to go down that path. On top of all this im also paying to get dental work and to make it worse im probably gonna have to get orthodontist work again which is not cheap. Im gutted ill need it again. So im feeling overwhelmed i tried talking to my mum but she has the outdated thinking of i have a good job and about to buy a house what do i have to depressed about. Ive always had to be the good child. At the same time as this my older sis whos in her early thirties is looking to move out to the city renting. I told her i want to cancel my gym membership and she keeps saying ive still got months beforea property settles which is true but i want to save up for furniture. I feel like my family thinks im made of money and always end fine. Im not fine, im stubborn, i do things the hard way in life but i work hard and h ave a lot of resilience but i have a lot of mental health issues. If youve gotten to this part thank you for reading, i need a space to vent and freedom to make my own choices.

nellie158 Issues with setting in-law boundaries
  • replies: 11

Hi all, This will be the first time I have posted on a forum. I am currently struggling with holding my ground when it comes to creating boundaries for my in-laws. We have had a few disagreements over the last few weeks due to my partner and I feelin... View more

Hi all, This will be the first time I have posted on a forum. I am currently struggling with holding my ground when it comes to creating boundaries for my in-laws. We have had a few disagreements over the last few weeks due to my partner and I feeling like his family are over-stepping. There have been times in the past where we have tried to set boundaries, but I end up folding and making concessions so that I don't have to deal with negative reactions from my partner's family members. I have been told by my psychologist that I am a "people pleaser" so find these situations very uncomfortable. However, recently both my partner and I stood firm on something that was important to both of us. My partner ended up in separate arguments with his mum and sibling (the last thing I wanted) because they wouldn't respect it. The latter got very emotional about it and their response was that he was acting unlike himself and that he shouldn't bottle up his feelings and he should talk to them next time (this response make me feel very responsible for his behaviour despite him saying it was how he actually felt). I found it very frustrating because we had both tried to calmly make how we felt about this particular issue clear. His family seem fine with him now, but his parents seem icier towards me since. I just wanted advice on ways to approach issues like this so that they won't end in conflict. Both my partner and I really enjoy spending time with our respective families, so I don't want this to change.

Haveyoumet_jo Leaving a narcissist
  • replies: 9

I have been married for nearly 9 years and together in total for 16 years. I have only admitted to myself that this relationship is an emotional abusive one and he is narcissistic. I have known it I think subconsciously but didn't want to admit it. N... View more

I have been married for nearly 9 years and together in total for 16 years. I have only admitted to myself that this relationship is an emotional abusive one and he is narcissistic. I have known it I think subconsciously but didn't want to admit it. Now I see it for what it is and I'm ready to make a move. We have a 4 year old girl as well together. I want to leave. I know I need to. But I'm scared I honestly don't even know how to start- I have contacted a lawyer whom I will talk to on Monday (it's Friday) I am scared to have the conversation in person because I know how it will go- not well. I already told him (blurted out) earlier this week in an argument that I don't think I want to be married. It went exactly how I thought- he back peddled everything, told me I am his world without me and our daughter he has nothing and that he will do everything to make it better. Now I know none of that is true but I wasn't prepared. My daughter was home and I wasn't ready to just go. Is it wrong to just leave ...no words..but then how do I tell him? Do I leave a letter stating where we are (or not where we are) I know he will not react well. I also know I want him out of the house (my parents paid for it ) but he has set up his work and it's a whole warehouse of stock and he has no where to put it. I can't stop worrying about how he will react and what he will do. I've been conditioned to do that. Any advice. Anything words will help. I'm just so lost. And I don't want to just stay cos it's easier that way.

Jezebelle How to help dad who won't help himself
  • replies: 5

My father-in-law haa been retired now for just over 2 years. He has never had any hobbies but loves trains. Ever since he retired his health (mental and physical) has been on a steady decline. He has no friends and does not speak to anyone on his sid... View more

My father-in-law haa been retired now for just over 2 years. He has never had any hobbies but loves trains. Ever since he retired his health (mental and physical) has been on a steady decline. He has no friends and does not speak to anyone on his side of the family. All he does everyday is sleep and stay at home and follow my mother-in-law around everywhere. He does not really do anything around the house and has put on a lot of weight. He has heart issues and claims to have 'bad knees' so can't walk. We (the family) have tried to get him to try new things and get out of his comfort zone but to no avail. We encouraged him to join a men's shed or seniors club or to do voluntary work. He claims he has 'the best job in the world' but all he does is sleep! He is very negative and gets very defensive when we say anything at all. We believe he is denial about his health and in denial about lots of things actually. All of us are at our wits end trying to convince him that he is not living his best life and that he should be enjoying retirement not just sitting at home and sleeping everyday. Does anyone have any ideas/suggestions/recommendations on how to possibly help this man? He is just so obstinate and stubborn and extremely pessimistic. It just makes us all angry when we see him struggling to walk - he is so inactive that his legs look swollen and he stumbles every time he walks. The ironic thing is that when he was younger he was a diver (swimming). He will be turning 70 this October and we fear he may not live to see this day. I honestly believe that there is some underlying issue and/or reason for this behaviour which only he knows. Regardless, he has no purpose and no desire to make the most of his golden years. It is extremely frustrating. How do you help someone who is so unwilling to help themselves?!??!?

Arabesque Coping with home while trying to cope with myself
  • replies: 4

Hello everyone. I'm new here. I have PTSD, anxiety and depression. My husband was diagnosed with advanced aggressive metastatic prostate cancer about 15 months ago. As part of the on-going management of the cancer he has been having hormone therapy t... View more

Hello everyone. I'm new here. I have PTSD, anxiety and depression. My husband was diagnosed with advanced aggressive metastatic prostate cancer about 15 months ago. As part of the on-going management of the cancer he has been having hormone therapy to stop his testosterone feeding the cancer, which has effectively put him into menopause. His mood swings are dreadful. And it would seem that I am the only person that witnesses, and therefore has to live with them. I have talked to him about it, but I don't think he realises just quite how difficult it is to live with, or how much of an issue it is for me. He is very fragile himself, and I don't want to force this so that it becomes a major issue. I don't think either of us have the resilience to deal with that. Anyway. I'm not looking for solutions, just wanted to share. Even just to hear people who have had the same experience would be wonderful.