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

white knight Disowning family members
  • replies: 2

As children we are raised in a family group and that means it is a "given" that we remain together forever - no matter what. It is only when we become young adults that we struggle heavily on that concept when we develop own minds, even our own value... View more

As children we are raised in a family group and that means it is a "given" that we remain together forever - no matter what. It is only when we become young adults that we struggle heavily on that concept when we develop own minds, even our own values. These values and ideas on what family relations should be are realized when we share our lives with others. We find out that how we were and are treated by a parent or both parents is not the norm, unacceptable to the point where we are struggling with mental health issues like anxiety, guilt, depression and other illnesses. And at that point of your life you turn to the very people that were fundamental in placing you in such a situation- your parents. The reality hits you- they put the walls up and point the finger at YOU!. This becomes the ultimate guilt journey for you because you have also always respected their wisdom and authority, now you are shattered and lost. So not that your guilt is taking a journey of its own you do one of two things- you fight them or you give in. What a terrible situation to be in. With the fear of losing your parents (that often support each other even though one knows that the others treatment is unacceptable) you give in multiple times over many years. This often mean you just delay the final separation. Google Beyondblue topic the definition of abuse- what is it? So that is what abuse is but what action do you take? Is disowning a parent or family member the right thing to do? Well your own judgement is paramount as is your mental health, however when you are verbally forced to comply with demands that are not, in your judgement, reasonable physically violated manipulated demeaned when limits are placed upon you not reflecting your age and independence when parents control too much with your life and that of your children eg how you raise them lack of religious freedom any attempt at ruining life event like weddings and so on you might need to consider action of separation for a period. Sometimes you have to take the reins especially when your parent carries out unacceptable conduct. Parents should be supporters of you and proud of you. They should be doting grandparents to your children not controllers of your parenting. It's a two way thing so the reverse is also true. If anyone has desire to control or do abuse, you might have to seek counseling with or without them, that is a basic obligation toward other human beings- opportunity to save the family unit. TonyWK

LoyalHound My wife called for a break, I'm struggling to accept her decision
  • replies: 9

About 6 months ago my partner and I had a tipping point in our relationship due to my distance throughout the 6 month period prior to that. We are proud parents to a beautiful little girl and between the time that she was about 10 months - 16months o... View more

About 6 months ago my partner and I had a tipping point in our relationship due to my distance throughout the 6 month period prior to that. We are proud parents to a beautiful little girl and between the time that she was about 10 months - 16months old I was clearly not coping with the whole parenting thing very well, which to this day I find disgusting because my wife wasn't coping either and needed my help. My coping strategy was to be busy with other commitments each weekend which meant my wife was left at home to look after our daughter. There was a few times where my wife was literally crying and struggling and I was so cold and switched off that I chose these other commitments over my family which I regret every day to this day. When the tipping point came, other things came out that during the time we had both made some pretty awful decisions in the relationship. After I had uncovered something that she had done she had a sudden change of heart and we reconciled the first time. We agreed to be completely open and honest. I undertook counselling and worked on being a better person, father, and husband. I'm not saying I was ever a bad husband or father before.. but my actions when I was going away on the weekends definitely undid every good thing that I had ever done. After about 1-2 months of the openness my wife started being closed off again. Thought that I was checking up on her all the time, and phones became locked off again, and the secrecy in the relationship brought the trust back to low and we were on edge. She seemed to have very little patience with me again, and I was doing the opposite and trying to do everything in my power to make things easier at home. Our daughter is very demanding and that certainly doesn't help things. A few weeks ago there was another moment where my wife told me that things aren't working again, and she didn't know if she could get past what I did last year. I got to the point of begging and crying which I know now is selfish but I was scared and worried I was going to lose the love of my life. We have only known each other in our adult lives. I love her to pieces and she tells me that she loves and cares for me.. but we are broken and unhappy. We did reconcile again after that instance after about a week.. and then recently again she has said the words "I think I want to leave" and we are now separated living under the one roof. I'm an emotional wreck. I know I can't control how she feels.. need help..

Guest_342 Ending an engagement
  • replies: 6

My fiance and I have recently called off our engagement after 2.5 years of being engaged. It has finally been a mutual decision, as the relationship was looking to be unviable. I still love him and the grief I am feeling is just like the feeling of a... View more

My fiance and I have recently called off our engagement after 2.5 years of being engaged. It has finally been a mutual decision, as the relationship was looking to be unviable. I still love him and the grief I am feeling is just like the feeling of a death in the family. All I can think about is how I should have been nicer and showed him more love, been more excited about planning our wedding, how he went out on a limb and asked me to spend the rest of my life with him, and thinking only about the good times - even though there were so many signs we just weren’t roght for each other in too many ways. In reality, though, we failed a few important tests when times got hard. I feel like I’ll always worry about how he is and that I’ll miss out of experiencing life with him. I feel so much guilt, that he never got to enjoy planning a wedding with me. He had so much courage to ask me to marry him, and I feel like I didn’t put any effort in. Does this pain go away? Will I ever want to be with anyone else - because right now I couldn’t think of anything I’d want less, and I feel like it would be disrespectful to my fiance. What can I do to get on with my life a little quicker? I have booked a holiday for December, but is there anything else you could suggest? I have anxiety sometimes and I have a tendency to reminisce and ruminate about particular memories. Thanks, if you can offer any suggestions. Is there anyone amongst you who could speak from experience?

Cheym Help with physical/emotional abuse!
  • replies: 6

Hi everyone, a few days ago my partner of 10 months hit me for the first time. I brought up something mundane about a girl (we had been drinking) and he lost it. I suffer pretty bad depression and anxiety alongside extreme self esteem issues. I do ab... View more

Hi everyone, a few days ago my partner of 10 months hit me for the first time. I brought up something mundane about a girl (we had been drinking) and he lost it. I suffer pretty bad depression and anxiety alongside extreme self esteem issues. I do absolutely everything for him, we are normally pretty good this has never happened before. He started sending me unforgiving, personal and distressing words over text. he also told me he cheated on me, when in fact he never did. But all these things he said were insecurities I had that I told him about. I suffer extreme low self esteem, depression and he knows nearly everything I’m insecure about and just threw it in my face. Then all he could say was he was so so sorry. He also physically hurt me in a public place and put me In a headlock and a witness called the police and now we have this unnecessary drama on top on the emotional implications. Now he’s extremely sorry about it, saying I didn’t deserve it and then everything has just gone back to normal. Which is loving and he tells me I’m his world. But he has no explanation as to why he said any of it?? My mental state is in extreme hurt and sadness and I don’t know to do because he’s blaming himself but not doing anything to actually make it better? How does it get better? I don’t know if it will happen again but why would I ever want to tell him anything ever if it’s going to be thrown in my face? Help please

Galactic_Gizmo A hard decision
  • replies: 1

I live in one place, hubby has agreed to move near my family. I have received a job offer. I will be near my family, which I have wanted for ages. The problem is…I love living here and feel like moving will affect our kids’ options and opportunities ... View more

I live in one place, hubby has agreed to move near my family. I have received a job offer. I will be near my family, which I have wanted for ages. The problem is…I love living here and feel like moving will affect our kids’ options and opportunities growing up (my husband also requires medical help which would be more challenging to get there, but he said he doesn’t mind). I don’t know what to do and I don’t know how much my anxiety is affecting my decision-making skills. The thought of moving upsets me greatly, starting the job fills me with dread. But I feel so guilty about choosing not to go and the position would be a great career opportunity. I am going to disappoint so many people if I don’t go. I don’t know what to do. How do I make the right decision?

rhianna_jn Pretty creeped out...
  • replies: 1

Hi everyone. I am writing this because I am literally at my wits end. A few months ago, my partner and I decided to look for a share house with his friend and his girlfriend because rent is a little too expensive and we’re saving up for a place of ou... View more

Hi everyone. I am writing this because I am literally at my wits end. A few months ago, my partner and I decided to look for a share house with his friend and his girlfriend because rent is a little too expensive and we’re saving up for a place of our own someday. I was weary of moving in but desperate because I wanted a better house, as well as more money. My housemates copy everything we do and it has gotten to the point where I’ve honestly considered calling the police and reporting them for stalking. I may come across as a tad paranoid, but here me out. It started out as a few small things. For example, they bought some items for them to use in the house and when we bought ours, they threw their old ones out and bought the exact same as us. They stole our date night idea that my fiancé and I had been doing for nearly two years, they’re always watching what we’re doing, moving into a different room when we leave a room, deciding to cook or do the washing straight after we do ours and as of late, they have been coming home shortly after or at virtually the same time. Even when we leave to go out, they decide to do the same thing. I’m so sick of hearing that imitation is the sinceriest form of flattery. It’s friggin creepy and I don’t know how much longer I can deal with it. If we speak to them, they’ll deny it. Sorry for the vent. Has anyone else felt as though their identity is being mimicked and it’s driven them crazy?

blahish Feeling like the outsider
  • replies: 2

I have always felt like the outsider in the family while my mother's son is the golden child that can't do a single thing wrong. Yet mother keeps making me feel guilty for "not keeping in contact with him and going to see him" Yet not once in the las... View more

I have always felt like the outsider in the family while my mother's son is the golden child that can't do a single thing wrong. Yet mother keeps making me feel guilty for "not keeping in contact with him and going to see him" Yet not once in the last 7 years has he been home to visit us. Last Christmas was the first time he had been back in the same state as the rest of his family yet he couldn't make it home for Christmas because he rather does his own thing and has christmas with friends. I am so over feeling like the outsider, I can't turn to my mother as her response is always"don't want to know about it, not my problem" or " you know what your brother is like"

em415 5 Year Relationship - Lately things aren't right
  • replies: 2

Hi everyone, So my boyfriend (M29) and I (F23) have been together for 5 years, we now live together in a house he bought and have a dog together, things have been great we talked about marriage, kids and our future together. But things have seemed to... View more

Hi everyone, So my boyfriend (M29) and I (F23) have been together for 5 years, we now live together in a house he bought and have a dog together, things have been great we talked about marriage, kids and our future together. But things have seemed to go downhill in the past 10 months and I don't know if it to do with my recent depression low or what. Pretty much I have noticed that I seem to annoy my boyfriend now, he is always too tired to talk or even listen after work and never really seems interested in what's going on in my world. Even when I suggest to go away for a weekend or fishing he just shrugs my ideas off. Last night we were with friends and I said somethings about how laser pointers are bad for dogs (Random I know) and he just shot back shutting it down with a negative comment. I later sat down and told him that the comment was rude to which he replied that sometimes I just say stupid things… which for someone with social anxiety who struggles enough I am starting to feel like I can’t even be myself with him in case i “say something stupid” again. Recently we found out we have different goals at the moment, mine is to travel and study and his is to save up money to buy his grans house..(which I will hopefully put money into as well) Now I was fine with this, we agreed a solo trip would be great for me but since then he just doesn’t even act interested in my trip, I want to be able to get excited with our future goals together but it just seems like he doesn’t care as he isn’t the one going. I am trying my best to support him as I am not sure if he’s going through something and not telling me? (I have asked him) but we just keep falling back into this negative pattern where I just don’t feel like I am doing enough to keep him happy and if he is this annoyed now it’s getting harder to see our future together which scares the daylights out of me. I know its not anyone else's decision but just wanted some feedback or support on the whole situation. Granted I am also not perfect and there are things I am working on for this relationship like how I struggle with constructive criticism and my own personal organisation but I am tired of these ups and downs and just want some ideas on how to get my life back to normal. (Sorry about the novel)

Shelly19 Feeling anxious
  • replies: 1

Hi I have been with my fiancé for nine years we became engaged three years ago and only started living together at the start of last year. I have a son and he has a daughter and we have just had a child together. We have had our moments during our re... View more

Hi I have been with my fiancé for nine years we became engaged three years ago and only started living together at the start of last year. I have a son and he has a daughter and we have just had a child together. We have had our moments during our relationship but I love him very much, he suffers from depression and it is slowly taking its toll on me where I don’t feel happy anymore. Our house is falling apart and needs lots of fixing as we are tight on money at the moment but we are getting by. But a major problem in our relationship is making decisions my partner wants to buy his daughter a car for her 21st and we can’t afford it and I don’t think she really deserves it she has never had a job she treats her dad like crap and has one child and is pregnant again. He has decided he is buying her a car he knows I don’t agree because we can’t afford it but his going to do it anyway and it’s making me feel really anxious. I’m not sure if I’m just overreacting I really need some advice thanks for you time.

ACP Between a Rock and a Hard place
  • replies: 3

My partner of 13 months who I’ve lived with on/off since December broke up with me the other night after being kicked out of our house by my parents. He has depression and a drinking problem and the last month has been very hard on us, I’ve been trav... View more

My partner of 13 months who I’ve lived with on/off since December broke up with me the other night after being kicked out of our house by my parents. He has depression and a drinking problem and the last month has been very hard on us, I’ve been traveling a lot for work and while I’m away he and my parents haven’t been getting along. All of them drink, my step dad has mental health problems like my partner and my Mum is a very difficult person. It’s a tough set up - My parents are strict with the house, mum is a OTT clean freak while my partner is not. He’s very chilled but has approached our living situation as a share house set up which I’ve argued it’s not. In the last month we’ve had two big fights. Both I’ve said things I didn’t mean, I told him to leave the house and we fought badly. We would discuss and make up, leaving me thinking we were getting closer to being better as a couple but deep down I knew we shouldn’t be living at my parents house. It wasn’t working and I could tell my partner was struggling - Bit of background, my parents never address issues they have until it reaches exploding level. I grew up with this so it wasn’t a surprise to me but they had so many issues with me and my partner but never addressed them with us, causing bigger issues. The other night I was out and returned home to my parents passed out from drinking and my partner in a rage. Apparently they had kicked him out, telling him that no one wanted him in the house and he needed to get out. Partner was also drunk. He was so angry it scared me and now, he’s moved out and broken up with me - all in a matter of a few days. im at a loss, I don’t know what to do. My parents are now saying he’s manipulative and a liar but I know my parents, they lie and exaggerate to make themselves look like they are the victims. I don’t want to lose my partner, I love him and want to continue to be with him even though his mental health continues to be a struggle to deal with. That being said, I don’t want to burn bridges with my parents. I’m so heartbroken at my break up, I’m getting nothing but “woe is me, he was mean to me” from my parents and I feel trapped in the middle. My parents punish me for what he does and he punishes me for what they do. My partner is ignoring my messages which is painful too. I’m trying not to be the crazy girlfriend and message him heaps but I’m struggling. Any advice would be much appreciated How can I keep my relationship with my partner and my parents