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.

All discussions

chilloice Unsure if being in relationship is right for me
  • replies: 5

Hello, I've been in a relationship with my partner for approx. 1 and a half years. For the most part, it has been a healthy and caring relationship, and as we work out our differences it seems to improve as we understand each other more and more. I'm... View more

Hello, I've been in a relationship with my partner for approx. 1 and a half years. For the most part, it has been a healthy and caring relationship, and as we work out our differences it seems to improve as we understand each other more and more. I'm in my second year of uni at the moment, so I feel like (despite quarantine at the moment) I'm at a time in my life where I hadn't imagined myself to be 'tied down' in a relationship. My partner and I get along very well, I consider him one of my best friends and someone who understands me very well. I also feel like he feels more strongly for me than I do for him. More recently, I've been struggling with the idea that I would like to have time in my young adult life to be single and meet lots of new people without feeling like I (somewhat selfishly) -need- to consider anyone else. We went through a rough patch when he asked me if I'd still want to be in the relationship if he went travelling for an indefinite amount of time in the next year. I truthfully told him I wasn't sure, and after more questioning I said that I would like to be single at some point in my life again. I acknowledged that I thought my mentality may be a bit 'young' and inconsiderate - not wanting to put in the effort -now- to maintain a very long term relationship. After much more discussion though, we agreed we wanted to stay together and not focus so much on what a 'relationship' should look like, defining it ourselves. Since, I feel the relationship has relaxed a lot, which I find relieving. However, I'm now starting to feel anxious for the same reasons. I feel like my partner expects we'll last a very long time - move in together etc. and that we are very well matched. He says that if we broke up, since he's had other long term relationships, he 'knows' it would be very difficult to find someone like me again. This is my first serious relationship, and when I listen to myself, I know that although I think it could work, I don't want this to be my only relationship. I'm not even sure being in a relationship down the line would be the best option for me anyway. I guess I'm struggling to understand what is behind what I'm thinking and feeling. I don't feel like I can trust that what I'm telling myself is the truth, and I don't know how I can approach this situation. I'm not sure if what I'm feeling is just a result of something else - am I stressed/down? Does anyone have similar experiences? Or suggestions? Thank you

Jessie111 No affection in my relationship anymore
  • replies: 2

Hi all, my partner doesn’t show any affection to me while I am a very affectionate person. She knows how I feel here and claims to be and unaffectionate person due to her past and having some ptsd from a previous partner. I’m trying really hard to ac... View more

Hi all, my partner doesn’t show any affection to me while I am a very affectionate person. She knows how I feel here and claims to be and unaffectionate person due to her past and having some ptsd from a previous partner. I’m trying really hard to accept this because I love her and want to understand her struggles, but I am really not coping with it and I just need some advice on how to go about fixing this. Leaving her is not an option, I want to fix this. She used to be affectionate but it was when we were younger and partying a fair bit, she also claims now we have stopped that there is no distraction to how she’s feeling and her real self has come out. We’re also having some struggles with a very close friend of hers, she’s having some very serious mental health struggles and has been in the mental health ward for a month and is back there now after attempting a week at home, but only lasted 3 days before the paramedics picked her up. Now I understand all the focus is on her right now, outside of our affection problems I’m feeling very forgotten in general through all of this. She seems very disconnected from me and all I want to do is help in anyway I can, be there for her and take care of her through this difficult time helping her best friend of 15 years out of the hell shes stuck in is taking a massive toll on her and I can’t help but feel completely pushed aside as if my help isn’t an option. Our affection issues have been existent for a lot longer prior to her friends struggles also. Please help me move forward here... I just don’t know what to do anymore. I’ve had my own mental health struggles but I managed to get past that with the help of others and her, I just want to same for the people I care about so much and I just want our relationship to feel nice and warm again.

MEGM Depression causing relationship doubt
  • replies: 2

Hi all, First-time poster. I have been dating my boyfriend for 4 months now. We fell in love very quickly and I have never felt this spark with anyone. Our compatibility is undeniable and we have integrated into each other's lives very quickly and ea... View more

Hi all, First-time poster. I have been dating my boyfriend for 4 months now. We fell in love very quickly and I have never felt this spark with anyone. Our compatibility is undeniable and we have integrated into each other's lives very quickly and easily. He told me early in that he is on medication for depression and ADHD which I accepted as something we will have to work through. In the last week he has been confronted with the reality that we aren't in "honeymoon" dating and has been verbalising his doubts on whether he is ready for everything that comes with a relationship. He doesn't believe he can offer me what I need, security and commitment for now and the future. He thinks he will end up hurting me one way or anther, and doesn't think he deserves me. He is filled with guilt that he can't always be present for me and is running hypothetical scenarios in his head which he is convincing himself to be inevitable. I felt completely blindsided by these conversations. Last week we were head over heels and now he's telling himself he is "toxic" and "emotionally abusing" me for going from being so happy to being so full of doubt. I think he thinks the best thing for us both is for him to be single but i don't believe that too be true. People don't fall in love as easily as us to give up this quickly. I have reassured him it is okay that he feels this way but I'm not prepared to give up. I know he loves me and this is his mental health talking. I have asked that we take it day by day and try to work through it. I am scared he won't be able to shake these thoughts. I am giving him space to digest his thoughts and headspace. It is increasing my anxiety too and I am focusing on myself so I am not too dependant on him or rely on him because that is what worries him. I am asking for advice on how to best work through this and settle his mind.

Pako Relationship Confusion During Pandemic
  • replies: 1

I am 52 years old and separated from my ex-wife for 6 years now. After my separation, I met a lovely woman. We are now 5++ years in the relationship and we see decided to live with each other in the last 2 years. I bought a house last year to be with... View more

I am 52 years old and separated from my ex-wife for 6 years now. After my separation, I met a lovely woman. We are now 5++ years in the relationship and we see decided to live with each other in the last 2 years. I bought a house last year to be with this woman. My son from previous marriage came back from abroad just before the lockdown. He just finished his studies just before the pandemic lockdown. When the lockdown was announced, I had to live where my son is staying in another house during this time which is 2 hours from where I live. During the last 4 weeks, we were calling each other from separate houses everyday and there were no issues. Last week, I asked what movies she's been watching since I left. She told me it's all about houses and gardens. One evening, I checked her email account as we both have access to each other's account. I accidentally saw an activity on her account on the activities that she was doing in the last 4 weeks. I saw that she was watching this guy's video for those weeks I was away constantly everyday. I then asked her again the following day if she was watching other shows or videos to confirm my suspicion - and she told me she didn't watch other than gardens and houses. I told her that I saw her online activity and she firmly denied it until I told her I found out all her online activities as I have a record. She then admitted and she told me it's just escapism. And she denied being attracted or contacting this man even though almost half of her day based on the online records is almost spent watching his videos. I don't want to feel jealous but part of me is telling me that she is emotionally cheating on me. The reason I had that thought is because she denied all her relationships of more than 20 people before me. I only found out about it after finding deleted emails and letters on the first 6 months of our relationship. It was fine for me after she confessed. But I also found out that she was seeing another man during our first month together, and she told me that nothing was really going on between them even though they constantly see each other while she's working. I was broken after learning all these, as if history is repeating itself. I'm now thinking of leaving her even though its too hard. I thought I found my lifetime partner to grow old with. Her last message to me was 'I feel the truth of what you say but i still want to make it up to you if I can'. I would appreciate any of your advices.

tancate Dealing with husband’s mental illness
  • replies: 2

I have been married for 13 years and for the past 8 years my husband had been suffering from mental illness. It’s been very hard as he’s been in and out of work for the past 8 years. The whole situation has increased my anxiety and I am making most o... View more

I have been married for 13 years and for the past 8 years my husband had been suffering from mental illness. It’s been very hard as he’s been in and out of work for the past 8 years. The whole situation has increased my anxiety and I am making most of the decisions and holding the relationship together. My husband’s family is all overseas. My husband is a beautiful person and I love him very much, but his mental illness is taking a toll on me. I have been thinking of leaving the relationship, but I am riddled with guilt about doing it and not wanting to be alone. I’ve had counselling sessions and done lots of mental work on myself, but I’m still not sure what to do. I am wondering if there are any other women in the same situation and if they have stayed or left. I’ve been to carers groups but most of the carers were parents or men with wives suffering mental illness. If there are any women married to Jen with mental illness I’d be interested to hear how you deal with being with a partner with mental illness.

Evelyn25 Toxic brother in- law
  • replies: 6

Hi! I am new to the forum. I am not sure if there is already topic with the same title. Anyway, I found this forum a couple months ago but now I decided to express my feelings. As I wrote in the title I consider my brother in law to be a toxic person... View more

Hi! I am new to the forum. I am not sure if there is already topic with the same title. Anyway, I found this forum a couple months ago but now I decided to express my feelings. As I wrote in the title I consider my brother in law to be a toxic person. I have been living with in-laws for a year and they are really great people except my brother in-law. From the very first time I met him I felt he is different, there was something that didn't feel right. However I was tolerating him for a year. He is 30, he does not work, he appears to be an adult kid ( spoiled by parents), lazy, sleeping all day and completely doing nothing productive. However his life is his decision, but somehow his behaviour influenced my life and my relationship with my husband. He often argues with his family and accuses everybody for anything, he never admits his fault and never takes responsibility. A few months ago he argued about stupid things, he offended me in front of my husband and my parents in-law. Since then I don't feel very comfortable being around him. I started having counselling sessions and I forgave and tried to build that relationship because of mu husband and my in-laws. But a month ago he attacked me verbally, playing victim and started insulting me again for stupid things. Even though I tried talking and explaining some things to him, he was yelling and when he figured out he had no arguments he called me lots of offending words and left. My husband and I were not talking to him for 3 weeks and we moved out just to have peace. The reality is that my husband started talking to him again and I feel like I hate him, and I have never felt that for anyone before. When we have to go to visit the in-laws I have that feeling of anxiety, uneasy stomach, feeling sick and my heart is racing and I feel tension. I can't explain my husband how I feel, I try but he doesn't really understand. And I really don't know if this post is going to ease my situation, but I had to express how I felt. I don't really want to have any contact with him since it makes me feel very uncomfortable and anxious.

be_me_be_you I feel uncomfortable about some things my Mum has said to me
  • replies: 4

Hello all, My Mum thinks it would be a good option if myself and my siblings bought a house together. It's logical; we have trust in each other, we're used to living together, and it ensures ongoing family support. Additionally, three incomes will ma... View more

Hello all, My Mum thinks it would be a good option if myself and my siblings bought a house together. It's logical; we have trust in each other, we're used to living together, and it ensures ongoing family support. Additionally, three incomes will make it an easy process. I am apprehensive about the commitment involved though. It doesn't match up entirely with the future I wanted. I don't feel like it leaves me enough room to develop my own independence. A few times I have posed: "What if I met someone and started a relationship? What if we wanted to live together? I don't want to be in a situation where I would have to choose to abandon my siblings." In the past, Mum has countered this by saying surely my siblings would just buy me out of my share of the house and it would be fine. The other day she said something different though. She said "I don't think you really want a relationship. You're getting close to turning 30 and that's making you question things. You know, like how some women's hormones kick-in and make them want a baby even when they didn't want one before. You just have to wait it out, and then you'll realise you didn't really want a relationship at all." (Just as a side-note, I don't want a baby. I'm pretty firm on that point.) I've been replaying this in my head a lot. I'm really in two minds about it. It's not an entirely untrue statement. I am questioning things as my 30th approaches. Relationships are risky. There's a lot of terrible people out there, and I barely know anyone who hasn't been stung badly. I feel embarrassed and abnormal because I've only really had one short relationship in my early 20s, and I tell small lies to people who don't know me to make myself seem more like other people my age. I feel like I'm running out of time to catch up. Also, I'm not a fan of big commitments. But hey, not all relationships have to be serious, right? On the other hand, I feel like this was a big statement for my mother to make about my own feelings. I don't think she's taken into account that "just waiting it out" leaves me facing a whole lifetime of "what-ifs". If I act on her statement, it also serves to ensure she gets her own way with my life choices. I'm running out of characters to type, and I don't want to get too personal with the details, but obviously there are other complex things going on here too. What I want to know is, if you were a "fly-on-the-wall" for our conversation, what would your feelings be about it?

Confused_partner What to do about partner hiring prostitutes?!
  • replies: 2

So I have been separated from the father of my two children for over 2 1/2 years. And have been with my new partner for about two years now. He just moved in with me a few months ago and at the same time he was moving in with me I found texts on his ... View more

So I have been separated from the father of my two children for over 2 1/2 years. And have been with my new partner for about two years now. He just moved in with me a few months ago and at the same time he was moving in with me I found texts on his phone that he was arranging to see a prostitute.... he didn’t do it in the end but he paid her for photos and was definitely going to go through with it (the timing just didn’t work I think). Then last week he totally blew me away by getting down on one knee and proposing with a fancy diamond ring and all.... I didn’t say yes straight away I was so shocked and totally not expecting it at all!! But he convinced me to say yes basically. Then a few days after that there’s a couple of hours out of his day when I was at work and he wasn’t that can’t be accounted for, he wasn’t answering his ph and his internet was turned off so I couldn’t see his location. What he said he was doing and how much he actually achieved don’t add up, and he’d changed his shirt while out as I found one that he was wearing (smelt like fresh cologne) in the back of his car. I’ve questioned him and he’s flat out denying it but I know better. I’m pretty sure he was with a sex worker. A couple of days after that he bought us a new car (an expensive one). Things are so much easier for me financially with him living here after I’ve been doing it on my own with my kids for the last couple of years and when he’s with me he does treat me really well! I don’t think he can give up the hookers and he also has some mental health issues which I think may have been misdiagnosed. What should I do? We saw a sex therapist after I originally found the first texts and after a one on one session with him she felt that he had some sort of mental health problem that hasn’t been correctly diagnosed and wouldn’t see us again until he got a second opinion psych assessment (this takes a while to get through the system). He currently has a ptsd diagnosis but I think there could be some borderline personality stuff going on there. I’m so confused about how to feel and what to do?! Can I just let the prostitutes slide because the good with him outweighs the bad? Can he change? Is his hooker problem related to underlying mental health problems? How much do us women have to put up with to get some of what we need? Thanks 🤯

Crys I feel stressed under this restrictions.
  • replies: 2

Hi guys, I’m 22 and currently live in the area that is under stage 4 restrictions. While the restriction allows me to go meet my romantic partner, I kinda don’t wanna go because I live with two at risk people. I’ve stayed at home for a total of almos... View more

Hi guys, I’m 22 and currently live in the area that is under stage 4 restrictions. While the restriction allows me to go meet my romantic partner, I kinda don’t wanna go because I live with two at risk people. I’ve stayed at home for a total of almost 5 months since the beginning of the pandemic and it’s stressing me out. Me and my partner, we’re under a lot of stress for not being able to see each other. We keep fighting and seems like we cannot get things to work out. I expect a lot more attention and affection from him. I want him to at least call me once or twice a week. And by call, I mean when we’re seriously focusing on talking with each other, not him playing games and watching streamers. Whenever I get mad at him, he promised that he’ll try to change but it just keep staying that way. But I also feel like I’m the one who’s being annoyingly unreasonable. I feel super lonely and anxious that our relationship is not gonna work, and I don’t know when will this all end so I can start a normal life again. Because of that, I want him to talk with me more, care for me more. I get mad when he sleeps 12 hours a day. I get mad when he watches a movie and take a while to reply to my message. I even get mad because he doesn’t know that I have a haircut. I didn’t tell him but I changed my avatar on a social media platform. I just feel like if he’s really care about me, he would have known. Even the smallest thing can trigger me. I told him about my feelings, what I think and what I want from him. He told me he’s understand but after a few days, it’s just going back to the same way. The main reason that I feel that way is because when we first met, he care about the littlest detail about me. Everything that I get mad about above, would never happen. All these things make me feel like he doesn’t love me anymore and the feelings we have for each other has faded. And because of that, I kinda resent him more. We just decided to stop talking with each other for a week to sort all of our feelings out. But I seriously don’t know how to control my feelings and stop expecting too much from him. But seriously, when will this all end? Stay safe guys and remember to comply with the rules.

Mel83 Husband Has Told Me He No Longer Loves Me
  • replies: 4

Three nights ago my husband of 10yrs and partner of 18yrs, told me he no longer loves me and took his stuff and left. We are both 37 and have two teenage boys and my heart is breaking. This was completely unexpected. I have an appt with my counsellor... View more

Three nights ago my husband of 10yrs and partner of 18yrs, told me he no longer loves me and took his stuff and left. We are both 37 and have two teenage boys and my heart is breaking. This was completely unexpected. I have an appt with my counsellor in 4 days but am struggling at the moment. I tried to tell him I will do whatever I can to be a better wife but he won’t listen. We have a mortgage and he has said myself and the boys will keep staying here as normal but I know at some point that will change. I haven’t really eaten in 3 days and when I think about the future and how I will cope I feel like I can’t manage. I feel so alone, even though I have friends for support.