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

kned Struggling with career choices
  • replies: 2

I'm not sure if this is the right forum but here goes. Ever since I became a mum 6 years ago, my passion for my career has changed. I returned to work part time between kids, but I felt like life was similar to that early scene in 'Shaun of the Dead'... View more

I'm not sure if this is the right forum but here goes. Ever since I became a mum 6 years ago, my passion for my career has changed. I returned to work part time between kids, but I felt like life was similar to that early scene in 'Shaun of the Dead' - just going through the motions of life in autopilot, like zombies. Ita sad and disappointing as I used to hold such passion and drive for my career. I am qualified/experienced in social work so I used to want to help people! I wanted to improve their quality of life, I was always striving to be an amazing person who made changes to other's lives. Now I'm a busy mum of 3 and I don't think I'm depressed. I enjoy my kids and my life generally. However I have lost my purpose outside of being 'mum'. The thought of returning to the field I worked in, just makes me feel numb. What is wrong with me?!!! Is this a sign that I need a career change? Is this normal after having a family?

RoseMum Toddlers, family, work, exhaustion, repeat
  • replies: 5

So I know I am not the first working mum with a strong willed toddler....but how do people keep going?? I work 4 days and I'm pregnant but the nature of my industry is that is still 40-50 hours per week on average. (Every evening until about 11pm aft... View more

So I know I am not the first working mum with a strong willed toddler....but how do people keep going?? I work 4 days and I'm pregnant but the nature of my industry is that is still 40-50 hours per week on average. (Every evening until about 11pm after I get home, later when we have tough bed times, and from about 3-4 on Sunday, ). All i want is to take a sick day but if I do its over 100 emails to respond too when I return, I still receive a dozen phone calls during the day and the meetings I reschedule, take a couple of hours anyway to find a new time. I end up working the Saturday to catch up. I try to delegate but they keep bouncing back. Fridays I have with my wonderful daughter, who I love, but currently she seems to only say no, is very clingy wanting to always be carried and still at over 2 doesn't sleep through (yes we've have sleep consultants, sleep school, paediatric assessments etc - advice is to make piece with it) My husband is great but with us both FT there is no space for self-care. I am also worried that he is looking so tired, his mood is poor and seems worn down by the endless to do list we are never on top of that he will just get over it all. (I know feel like that sometimes). Our family don't live by. We have tried gyms with creche's etc, we don't get 15 mins through before she is returned, same with babysitters - we have tried a couple of times, they call us within an hour as she is so upset. Even at her wonderful day care, after 12 months we still have screaming at drop offs. I just want to tap out for a week but i feel the luxury to leave responsibilities behind is something afforded to other people. Does it get better? How do you survive?

Guest_598 Cautiously building a future after separation
  • replies: 3

Hi All, I have posted here before. After a lot of difficulty and heartache, my partner has finally been able to cut the ties to his ex-wife and she is now, once and for all, moved out and in another state. He did not love her and did not want to be w... View more

Hi All, I have posted here before. After a lot of difficulty and heartache, my partner has finally been able to cut the ties to his ex-wife and she is now, once and for all, moved out and in another state. He did not love her and did not want to be with her but needed to go through the counselling process to make her understand that it isn't working and hasn't for many years. She finally packed up and left for another state on Tuesday and although he wanted to be separated from her, I think the delayed feelings of loss have hit him. Not loss of her as a person but the fact that he never wanted to be divorced and standing before a broken marriage. He is in love with me and we have been in an on-off relationship for 14 months, never losing sight of our intense bond. But right now, because his feelings are raw, he seems to be overwhelmed. It is like a sensory and emotional overload at the moment and that results in him dialling everything back to zero again. At the moment, he seems unable to feel how he usually feels for me and we need to take it slowly the coming weeks and months because he may otherwise be overwhelmed wanting to run away. His safe space in such situations is with him alone, that stems from childhood issues which he is currently exploring very deeply with a psychologist. He is definitely on the right path but it appears as if he is emotionally unavailable and easily overwhelmed. I was wondering whether he should just be alone for now but he does not want that. He wants a future with me and he wants us to build that, however, he wants to do that very slowly and in small portions. I am ok with taking it slow, although it hurts me to think that he is currently not sure what he is feeling for me although only one week ago, he dreamed of all those things with me and said he does not want to lose me. I am very confused, most of all about whether this is normal or not. I think it is considering he only just said goodbye to his old life and although he had originally separated from his ex 14 months ago, he allowed her to move back for the counselling and this time it is the definitive 100% end. He definitely does not want a life with her but after 15 years, it is understandable that the end is something that makes you sad. Can I assume it is normal he is currently emotionally void or overwhelmed and will that dissipate soon considering he wanted the separation? And what should I do to help / support / not overwhelm him?

Tammi1976 Feeling like my world is falling apart
  • replies: 6

Don't know where to start...I feel down in the dumps, feel like everything is an effort and I just want to sleep. I am a mother of two boys aged 12 and 7 who are my life. I was diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer in October 2018, after a lum... View more

Don't know where to start...I feel down in the dumps, feel like everything is an effort and I just want to sleep. I am a mother of two boys aged 12 and 7 who are my life. I was diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer in October 2018, after a lumpectomy, Chemo and Radiation I am now in the clear. You would think i would be over the moon, but im not, i feel emotional, tired and a failure as a mother. During the last year I have had no energy with raising the boys and just doing what had to be done to get through (cooking, cleaning, Working, Uniforms, lunches, drop off etc) I feel like my boys dont listen to me until i start yelling and then they tell me to calm down like im making a big deal of nothing. I am constantly yelling at them to get off there games,have dinner,get ready for school, showers, help out around the house and then when i yell at them i feel upset that i let myself get angry in the first place and feel like maybe i over exaggerated and feel like a bad mother. I just want to be a happy family and a happy mother for my boys and not feel so angry and upset all the time. Can anyone relate..... would love some advice

Lauren57r Parent issues
  • replies: 8

Im 3 weeks from moving back in with my prents a university year and i dont want to because all my parents do is fight everyday about stupid little things. I never get to spend anytime with my dad as my mother is making him work nightshift as she refu... View more

Im 3 weeks from moving back in with my prents a university year and i dont want to because all my parents do is fight everyday about stupid little things. I never get to spend anytime with my dad as my mother is making him work nightshift as she refuses to work. I have tried many times to them how i feel about it but nothing ever seems to change and im scared dad will have a heart attack due to the stress mum puts him under

Shdowz Pain of partner leaving
  • replies: 7

13 year relationship she told me on Xmas Eve 2019 doesn't love me anymore and walked out with the kids (3) now Feb 22 she got a new man I gave her every thing I don't wanna even stay in this house anymore. Maybe my next life will be better I choose h... View more

13 year relationship she told me on Xmas Eve 2019 doesn't love me anymore and walked out with the kids (3) now Feb 22 she got a new man I gave her every thing I don't wanna even stay in this house anymore. Maybe my next life will be better I choose her over my family cause she didn't get a long with them my family don't even care when I try to reconnect my farther calls me up abuses me my mother don't even answer my phone calls my brother keep saying I should have done better I have literally 1 friend calls me up everyday see how I'm doing besides that have nothing I was a loner growing up cause we had each other now she's gone I feel so so lost

Bubbleandsqueaks Partner's ex gives me anxiety
  • replies: 1

Hi everyone, thank you for taking time to read my post. My partner and I have been in a relationship for almost 3 years. He was with his ex girlfriend for almost 3 years as well before he met me and we started hanging out as friends. About 2 years la... View more

Hi everyone, thank you for taking time to read my post. My partner and I have been in a relationship for almost 3 years. He was with his ex girlfriend for almost 3 years as well before he met me and we started hanging out as friends. About 2 years later we decided to give it a go however he is still constantly around her or doing things for her. He ended their relationship due to indifferences and said she agreed happily (however I feel like she still loves him). When we first dated, he told me she asked him to look after her cats for her as she would go overseas for almost a year and needed someone to look after her house, cats and take the bins out (so that people would think there was someone at home). Mind you my partner has a soft spot for pets and animals and he told me as a friend he agrees to do it. However at first I found it extremely weird as my partner lives a good 30mins away from her house but has to constantly go there every second day to do 'house sitting' for her but she has a friend that lives down the road. Why can't that friend do it? He still does it till this day and when she comes back from overseas, she will always find something small to ask him to come over and do for her. She has cameras all over her house and will constantly see him on the screens and talk to him. I've seen her message him almost everyday and it gives me so much anxiety. I trust my partner and knows he just has a good heart and wants to help a friend however depsite how many times I tell him that it makes me uncomfortable that he is always doing things for her, seeing her, having lunch and dinner, he says he doesn't see it as a problem and that she's just a friend, sometimes gets mad at me for always having a problem eith his ex. It hurts that he doesn't respect my boundaries and would rather have our relationship be rocky than keep a friend distance from her. I don't mind if when in emergency she asks for his help but this constant need for him is really pissing me off and I don't know how I can continue a future with my partner if she is always going to be in our picture.

DaisyD Relationship Anxiety
  • replies: 1

Hi there, Heaps of anxiety today - I was in a relationship with this guy and he ended it last year and we stayed friends. He went through some bad times with his ex wife and children (custody issues) and I have always supported him through it. Anyway... View more

Hi there, Heaps of anxiety today - I was in a relationship with this guy and he ended it last year and we stayed friends. He went through some bad times with his ex wife and children (custody issues) and I have always supported him through it. Anyway, he got very upset last year with this and lashed out, we were communicating on whats app and then he said he would block me and never unblock me again, but has unblocked me. He is just sitting there. We haven't communicated since last year, because I am respecting boundaries. He said he doesn't trust me and I know space and time can help. But I don't understand why he would block me, say he wouldn't unblock me again and he has - is it a game or a way of reaching out.

Mclarke How to help someone who won't help themselves
  • replies: 3

My name is Michelle, I’m 40 from qld. I have had my 19 year old step daughter in my care for the last 6 years now. She is mentally unstable and shows all the signs of being either a narcissistic sociopath, a sociopath or a psychopath. I’m not a dr to... View more

My name is Michelle, I’m 40 from qld. I have had my 19 year old step daughter in my care for the last 6 years now. She is mentally unstable and shows all the signs of being either a narcissistic sociopath, a sociopath or a psychopath. I’m not a dr to state she is any of those things but her behaviour matches with all of the above and some bpd. I have been trying to get her help for many years now and continue to fall flat on my face because it seems that unless a person is willing to get help them selves- nothing can be done. My step daughter is incredibly dangerous. She has taken her entire family down with lies and accusations to police and authorities. She will say and do anything she can to get her own way. Even asking her to pick up after her self or saying no to her results in serious consequences for whom ever does it to her. In 2018 she had a baby. Obviously the child was removed from her because she is unstable. They tried insisting that she get help but she refused. She is joe pregnant with number 2 and a high risk yet again. Have you ever seen the movie “gone girl?” My step daughter is identical to Ben Afflecks wife in that movie. I fear to no end that she is going to up grade to murder at some point, just to get her own way. She is that bad. I’m drained of having to deal with it and I don’t know how to get help for her without it being involuntary. Is there any option for involuntary treatment? I fear so much that her next step will be to take the life of her victims I don’t know what to do.

Guest_342 Am I being taken for a ride?
  • replies: 17

I wanted to seek others’ views on what might be the best thing to do in a particular relationship scenario, or maybe you could give me some tips to assist my decision-making. I met someone late last year. He was visiting my city from interstate (his ... View more

I wanted to seek others’ views on what might be the best thing to do in a particular relationship scenario, or maybe you could give me some tips to assist my decision-making. I met someone late last year. He was visiting my city from interstate (his family and he are from here but he has been interstate the last few years completing a uni degree for a career change). He had to return interstate shortly after, but before that things moved really quickly and we both wanted to keep in contact to resume things when he eventually returns in April. It’s been so difficult for me having that distance, but we have maintained contact on and off. However he has been very focused on his assignments and exams and has not had much time for me. I understand this, because I have been through the same uni course 15 years ago. Nevertheless, it has been hard, not being able to decipher whether there is any hope for us and whether it is worth me waiting four months of my life for his return in the hope he might still want to keep things going. He has consistently told me he wants this but his actions towards me (very limited contact and basically making me feel like an afterthought) has made me wonder whether I have been wasting my time. one thing in particular that bothered me is that he mentioned on the phone that he wanted to go on an overseas trip after uni to relax and he put it in such a way that made it sound like he meant ‘we’ should go. I though it was a little soon so kater sent him and idea for somewhere closer. He took ages to respond and when he did, he said it sounded too soon to suggest we go on a holiday together, along with an emoji of a person shrugging their shoulders. I was so shocked that he had turned that around as though I had been the one taking great silly leaps. On Thursday he finished his exams and I thought I might hear from him but didn’t hear until Sat when I sent a message asking if he’s finished. He said yeah sorry, I’ve just been sleeping and relaxing. It really confirmed for me that i am an afterthought. I’ve not been clingly and have given him soace over the last four months as needed. Is this guy wasting my time, or should I give him the benefit of the doubt and accept that he’s had uni stress? But meanwhile it’s made me feel worse than not having anyone at all. He doesn’t seem to care for my wellbeing. Is he being unfair? So sorry for the rant, but this has made me feel unappreciated and I’d welcome any perspectives.