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

grt123 How do you know when it's time to leave?
  • replies: 13

I was married for over 30 years. I was as loyal as a Labrador and wouldn't let go no matter how bad things got. Then one day 'bing' - I was done. The trigger was insignificant - no argument or fireworks. It was like I'd been on a journey and I'd quie... View more

I was married for over 30 years. I was as loyal as a Labrador and wouldn't let go no matter how bad things got. Then one day 'bing' - I was done. The trigger was insignificant - no argument or fireworks. It was like I'd been on a journey and I'd quietly pulled into the station.

Nat11 Stop caring what people think
  • replies: 5

How do I stop caring what people think I feel it consumes me and defines how I feel on a daily basis. I know it’s lack of confidence of myself I have struggled my whole life to like myself I find it hard to accept when I make mistakes I always want t... View more

How do I stop caring what people think I feel it consumes me and defines how I feel on a daily basis. I know it’s lack of confidence of myself I have struggled my whole life to like myself I find it hard to accept when I make mistakes I always want to be perfect and if I am not I tend to want to give up feel worthless feel no one wants me or I am just a big disappointment how do I find away to be confident and stop caring what others think is it I need to change my attitudes towards myself I’m sick of going through life feel unsatisfied and always sensitive to everything

kate5281 partner has depression, is irrational and im struggling
  • replies: 1

Hi, this is my first post, but I need some help and advice! my partner and I were together for a year before a series of events caused him to start to change, I lived with this for 6 months trying to support him, trying to prompt him to get help, tel... View more

Hi, this is my first post, but I need some help and advice! my partner and I were together for a year before a series of events caused him to start to change, I lived with this for 6 months trying to support him, trying to prompt him to get help, telling him he had changed but he didn't see it, until one night he got really drunk and I had to call the police. this was a defining moment for him and for us I guess. he realised he had an issue and he sought help. he has been through counselling how effective I don't know as he never discusses it with me or even tells me when he is has been going, he is medicated also. this has been 12 months now and to be honest it has been hell! he has improved slightly but he surely isn't that person I fell in love with. I am constantly guilt tripped. I cannot do anything alone and even just the mention of I am going to visit a friend creates issues, he claims he doesn't have an issue with it but comments and immediate change in attitude says otherwise. he says I don't involve him in mine and my children's (teenage kids who aren't his ) lives, I am not sure what he means by this comment as he is actively involved in every decision I make or any thing I do. he will attack me for something that I am not doing, and it always turns out he is doing it. for example I have a male friend at work, purely platonic strictly work related no outside work place involvement aside from social media friends, and I also have a large number of female friends from work who I socialise with outside of work, he took my phone one night whilst I was in the shower and scrolled to find a text from the male friend (quite old I might add) all work related but went off. skipped the female friend messages. and justified it that we are talking and he wanted to know so he could find out what he could talk to me about! just last week after months of me stressing about money, we have some big expenses coming up and me being unhappy in my job like im loosing sleep. he attacked me for trying to work out our finances a& not spending time with him (FYI sitting on the couch with him!) and then I found out later he had spent over $2500 on a hobby in that past week behind my back. I am such a fool. he claims I am over reacting etc this is out of control now our relationship is hanging by a thread and I cannot get through to him. there is 2 sets of rules. well one his! please help!

Broken-heartedmum My husband wants a divorce and we have a 6 month old baby - I’m broken
  • replies: 9

Ive been with my husband for almost 8 years and married just shy of 3. We had the most amazing life together ( so I thought...) had a beautiful wedding and the best belated honeymoon that I planned for over a year in 2017. Then in January 2018 we fou... View more

Ive been with my husband for almost 8 years and married just shy of 3. We had the most amazing life together ( so I thought...) had a beautiful wedding and the best belated honeymoon that I planned for over a year in 2017. Then in January 2018 we found out I got pregnant almost immediately after trying and thats when our fairytale love story started to come crashing down. He was never excited that I got pregnant and was quite disappointed that “ his life is now over and there’s nothing to look forward too but paying for the child and school fees” His mindset was always negative about starting a family but we all assumed it would change once she was born, after all he was 35 and I’m 34 so it was time to start a family. But unfortunately nothing changed and he was just looking like this depressed , unhappy and hating his life man who developed an eating and exercise disorder with huge body image issues. This would kill me seeing him like that so I would always threaten and say to him just leave if you don’t want this and you hate your life so much. When our daughter was 8 weeks old I moved out to give him some space and reflect but he was loving life as the house was clean and he would go to the gym morning and night so before he got too comfortable I came back to work on things and then he started treating me differently and being very cold towards me. He moved 2 weeks after I came back. It’s been 4 months since we lived together and I had been trying everything to get him back, psychologists, marriage therapy, space and time and 2 weeks ago he said he has had enough and wants a divorce as the resentment he holds towards me is too strong to overcome and he thinks I’m just financially driven and will take all the money in the property settlement as I have a child to raise the rest of my life. When we saw the marriage therapist 3 weeks ago as an absolute last resort all these bombshells came out how he wasn’t ready for marriage and I pressured him... our daughter doesn’t feel like his and in his mind it’s mine and my mother’s, that I never appreciated anything he did for me which I don’t know how else I could’ve shown appreciation other than get on my hands and knees and thank him, he felt like he was my punching bag because I would vent to him when I had a horrible day, that he couldn’t do anything right because I was too critical. He’s made me feel like I am the reason that our marriage failed and my baby girl has to grow up in a brokenfamily I’m broken

Hope19 Long distance relationship lonliness
  • replies: 6

Hi, My hubby, best friend and soul mate had to move for his job and I was unable to go due to the care of my 2 children and their father refusing to allow me to take them. My hubby and I have been together for so long, not all smooth sailing but we g... View more

Hi, My hubby, best friend and soul mate had to move for his job and I was unable to go due to the care of my 2 children and their father refusing to allow me to take them. My hubby and I have been together for so long, not all smooth sailing but we got there and now he has gone, although we are still together it feels like I am alone, we are unable to speak every day, I can't reach out and get a hug if I need it and I feel so lonely and isolated and have no friends or family close by, I live in a country town that's isolated and just don't know what to do.

Chickenhead I'm so disappointed in my mum
  • replies: 7

Yesterday I sat down with my mum to try and explain why I've declined to go to the next family birthday do. For the first time I outlined what it has meant for me to have anxiety, like actually what it means in day to day life. I then talked about th... View more

Yesterday I sat down with my mum to try and explain why I've declined to go to the next family birthday do. For the first time I outlined what it has meant for me to have anxiety, like actually what it means in day to day life. I then talked about the family group dynamics and what I see going on and why I get so anxious. By the end she was only humouring me. At times she stated/threatened that I have to be careful as there are "consequences", also mentioned that I'll loose my relationships. She was quite upfront about it. Then at the end she launched into this whole spiel about how life gets easier as the kids get older and I need to make sure I don't prolong the difficulty with decisions now. I need to get out and make friends; queue advise on how to do that... totally ignoring what I had explained about anxiety. She told me that the difficulties I have with the dynamics can only be changed by me (read between the lines, it's my fault). She told me to use disassociation as a coping mechanism to ignore the meanness and manipulation. And yes, she should actually know what disassociation is. She learnt nothing about me. I secretly recorded it so my husband and I could listen to it, and together we were able to identify the maniplutaions, gaslighting etc. She talked about how she and Dad would watch me get bullied as a kid and they did nothing because "what can you do?"... leave, you can take your child and leave. You can teach your child what is happening and how to stand up for themself... unless of course you don't want them to use those skills to stand up to you. I feel so exhausted and overwhelmingly sad today. I've held out hope that it's just my dad that is the bully in the family, but yesterday my mum proved she is right in there with him.

Jay_C Steps to leave Narcissistic Family?
  • replies: 2

Im male, was raised co-dependant and the scapegoat of a narcissistic family. They are effecting my life and health. I have nobody for support as i just attracted more narcissists which ive slowly cut off. Its now down to an ex gf who calls and my fam... View more

Im male, was raised co-dependant and the scapegoat of a narcissistic family. They are effecting my life and health. I have nobody for support as i just attracted more narcissists which ive slowly cut off. Its now down to an ex gf who calls and my family. Im on the dole, i have 2 dogs so it seems hard to find anything suitable. I dont trust people to live with. I've never moved out on my own accord, so i dont even know how to do it all. There has been stalking intimidation but its stopped for now. I can only guess it will start again when i leave. Is there a way for me to leave my narcissistic family? What steps should i take?

Vulcan171 Advice for dealing with toxic Mum who hates my partner?
  • replies: 3

Hi, all. My partner and I have been living together at my Mum's place for about a year now and recently things have taken a turn for the worst. My mum recently remarried and offered up the spare room to her husband's daughter, which would have been f... View more

Hi, all. My partner and I have been living together at my Mum's place for about a year now and recently things have taken a turn for the worst. My mum recently remarried and offered up the spare room to her husband's daughter, which would have been fine if his daughter didn't like to throw parties at random times. We had about an hour of warning before she brought her friends over, with a toddler stamping its feet loudly upstairs and serving to negate what sleep we could have gotten that night. My partner and I have the lower floor of the house, and while the party wasn't extremely boisterous, it was still very difficult to get to sleep knowing that they could have come downstairs and taken our stuff without our knowledge. It was hellish trying to get to sleep that night. Mum thought I needed to be more tolerant of the daughter, who lied through text that she was going to quiet things down but it was extremely unfair that we were denied sleep because of her. I've tried to get her to see my side of things but my Mum just completely refuses to listen. She believes that because I want to do different things with my partner instead of her, that my partner is the problem. She's belitted my partner, talked behind her back, chastised her and hasn't accepted her as a family member at all. I'm beginning to suspect my mum is emotionally abusive to me. I know that the internet has droves of unhelpful information, but from what I read it seems like my experience lines up with what the article I read classifies as symptoms of emotional abuse. Instances like not taking my emotions seriously, saying that I embarrass her, talking down to me subtly in public and trying to guilt-trip me emotionally have lead me to believe that she could be doing this without realizing. Regardless of her intentions, I honestly can't take this fight between her and my partner anymore and I can't handle her talking down to my partner. Thank you for reading. Any advice on how to keep my Mum at arm's length until my partner and I land our own place would be very much appreciated. We are going up to my partner's parents' to get away from this for a while.

alsatianwolf Emotional blackmail from parents
  • replies: 2

Hey everyone, my second post here! A quick intro: I'm 17, mum and dad are separated and have been for many years. Dad is getting remarried to mum's previous best friend. This is very severely affecting mum. This woman (I'll call her S, she lives in N... View more

Hey everyone, my second post here! A quick intro: I'm 17, mum and dad are separated and have been for many years. Dad is getting remarried to mum's previous best friend. This is very severely affecting mum. This woman (I'll call her S, she lives in NSW and we are in QLD) clearly doesn't like me and I don't like her. I don't like her bratty daughter either, but her son is one of my best friends, though he has actually cut and run from the whole family at the age of 16 so I may never see him again. I have to be a bridesmaid along with the daughter for S which is something deeply against my morals and it is really upsetting my mum that I'm going through with this - so why do it, you might ask? I guess loyalty. I am so loyal to my parents that I have been doing everything in my power to keep them both happy for 10 years, even when they have conflicting views. I love my mum and dad so deeply that I will feel physically sick if I disappoint them. I am exhausted as I haven't had the chance to put myself first for a long time. (My parents are amazing people but this just outlines what goes on.) There lies the issue - dad is starting to take advantage of this. He is on good pay and will buy me things, then use that against me later. E.g. "I make sure you have the best (idk, something) at all times so how could you say this?". And he will do this for S too. "She bought you all these clothes and you're being so rude to her!!" - But he has no idea the amount of deep hatred I have for her and her motives. I know so much about her and I know she doesn't love my dad. But I could never say anything without dad immediately becoming defensive. (I feel like giving up on typing this because it's so hard to write everything down, there's so much more). I live with dad almost full time but I feel trapped here. He says the worst things about my mum but I defend her always. He is very childish sometimes and gets defensive extremely easily. I am slowly learning to hold my own in an argument because he can be manipulative. Mum is begging me to live with her for half the time but I don't even know how to approach dad about it. Then she too will emotionally blackmail me but in a different, passive aggressive way that makes me feel even worse, e.g. "Don't even worry about the dog. I'll just look after her." But mum knows me better than anyone and she is always there for me. She is struggling with money and mental health. How do I keep them both happy? I don't know.

Nat11 Friend acceptance
  • replies: 3

Hi I want to get some advice on what to do about a particular friend of mine that I am not sure if I am wasting my time. I’ve know this person about 2 years when I lived with her and I always find that I dnt ever know where I stand with her if she li... View more

Hi I want to get some advice on what to do about a particular friend of mine that I am not sure if I am wasting my time. I’ve know this person about 2 years when I lived with her and I always find that I dnt ever know where I stand with her if she likes me or not because her personality is quite dominate compared to mine which is more passive. Throughout my time living with her I always found it hard to open up cause I felt like she might judge me and because I am insecure about myself sometimes I would close myself off.Last year I decided to move back home to my parents so that I could save a bit before moving in with my boyfriend. I’d thought we would catch up like we use to but we seem to not have but I’ve noticed that she keeps going out with our other roommate who has also moved out and doesn’t included me I’ve tried to tell her next time they catch up to include me but never made the effort and recently at her 30th we took some nice photos up but she purposely I feel left me out when she posted them on Facebook. Am I being paranoid or should I ask her straight out what the problem is and maybe tell her how I feel?