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

Sam_K Need advice please should I stay or move out
  • replies: 11

I don’t know what to do. Feeling really depressed. I have been married 7 years and have two kids one is 6 and second one is just 1 year old . We had a lot of arguments all these years. To start with consider me as worst person in the world so doesn’t... View more

I don’t know what to do. Feeling really depressed. I have been married 7 years and have two kids one is 6 and second one is just 1 year old . We had a lot of arguments all these years. To start with consider me as worst person in the world so doesn’t sound like I am only blaming her . My wife have temper and can go off at anytime on anything if she thinks it’s wrong and even if I don’t mean it or something was not done deliberately. In our arguments I have said the worst and she did too . I used to stay quite and didn’t say anything back. But everyone have limit but she is always on the limit. I slap her once which was nearly four years ago because she was pushing and shoving me but I have been hit probably about hundred time before this incident and after . But I never hit her after that. One morning I was woken up by slap because her friend and her decided to send me message on yahoo messanger and she thought I did not tell her but I did not even know and I was not even using yahoo messanger and it was more than four years ago. I worked away few time and had to go away but I have never cheated on her or even talked to any women the way I am not supposed to. But I m confessing I have watched porn while I was away . When I was away I went out for drink with 60 yo and 40+ . And I did not told her I was going to the pub with them because he had argument before I left and I was slapped but I still called her that night after few drinks but she got angry because I did not tell her and to this day it’s thrown on my face . But she always says I am doing things behind her back . But I am willing to go through lie detector to prove I have not done anything. My wife had a lot of sexual partners before me ans had kids before me and but when we met I told her I don’t want to know anything about it. It’s past. But I heard a lot after that even number of partner she had which is pretty high . But I still did not care and We had second child after that so our first child doesn’t miss out on us and hopefully that will put bit trust in the relationsh

Ihcaug What to do?
  • replies: 1

I have had a fairly challenging 4 years. I experienced the breakdown of a 20 year relationship - 17 and a half years married after my spouse committed adultery for the second time in the marriage and walked out the door. I was left with my young daug... View more

I have had a fairly challenging 4 years. I experienced the breakdown of a 20 year relationship - 17 and a half years married after my spouse committed adultery for the second time in the marriage and walked out the door. I was left with my young daughter full-time and have had her older sister most of the time too. Just under 3 years ago I met a new love and we got married and have had a baby boy and it’s the first child for my new spouse. Throughout our short marriage, my new spouse has been quite negative towards my daughters and showed a lack of compassion when one was sexually assaulted last year. Now my spouse, who is exceptionally close to their parents has decided to leave our marital home with the baby after a minor disagreement - an attempted discussion which was turned into an argument. My son is now at the parents’ home and my spouse won’t return home. I have tried to convince my spouse to come home and believe in keeping a marriage together for many reasons, including my Christian faith. Things are very dark right now. I have good parents and family & my faith. However, does anyone here have any insight or suggestions? I refuse to give up on my life but am heartbroken once again.

Xerathia Really struggling following a breakup 3 months ago
  • replies: 1

My now ex-girlfriend and I dated for 5 months. It was one of those whirlwind kind of romances, we were official within a week and spent 5+ nights a week together, doing most things together. I've had long term relationships before but I can say with ... View more

My now ex-girlfriend and I dated for 5 months. It was one of those whirlwind kind of romances, we were official within a week and spent 5+ nights a week together, doing most things together. I've had long term relationships before but I can say with absolute honesty that I have never fallen for a girl so hard. Everything about her made me feel alive, I've referred to it as the 'soulmate' kind of connection. We just clicked, would spend hours hanging out, doing activities, dates etc and couldn't seem to get enough of one-another. She was dealing with anxiety and I believe elements of depression and I offered my support the whole way through this, however she wasn't able to accept my help. I've since learned that she has a Dismissive/Avoidant attachment style. This means that opening up, becoming vulnerable and sharing her feelings is really difficult for her and often people like this suppress such feelings subconsciously through deactivating strategies. Learning about this has helped me to understand what happened between us. It's brought me some peace knowing that the actual reason for her sudden withdrawal was actually likely because we were getting so close. I know I did nothing wrong in the relationship and was actually told I was the best boyfriend she'd ever had, she loved spending time with me etc. but that she had not developed feelings for me. Anyway, the point of my post is to get some advice with how I can better accept what has occurred and get on with my life. I currently am trapped with constant ruminating (about both the good and bad times) and I know my self-esteem is absolutely shot at the moment. This breakup has lifted a veil on my life and I have realized I need to make some big changes with regards to my living situation, career, friendships, etc. I have put huge energy and effort into this since the breakup and I am starting to have some great victories with this - but I can't seem to find any joy or relief from these victories. I am stuck ruminating constantly. I have been seeing a psychologist for the past two months. But the progress is slow and I am falling back into a rather serious depression. I am journaling, exercising, socializing, starting new hobbies etc but nothing takes my mind off the breakup. It feels like the breakup as a whole is my default mind-mode. Does anyone have any advice as to how I can move past this?

toscanini Grieving discovery of narcissism
  • replies: 5

I'm struggling, because I always knew there was something wrong. Now I know he has no empathy, no love and he is only out to make himself feel good. My love and care seem wasted. It's only been a few weeks since I've realised. I've been duped after 5... View more

I'm struggling, because I always knew there was something wrong. Now I know he has no empathy, no love and he is only out to make himself feel good. My love and care seem wasted. It's only been a few weeks since I've realised. I've been duped after 50 years of fake love.

Gone_away Parentified child of a narcissistic mother
  • replies: 4

I am the product of the parentified child to a narcissistic mother. I'm not sure of the services offered these days, but I was an 80's kid. There was no support and it seems that there is no awareness about this and how much it can screw someone up. ... View more

I am the product of the parentified child to a narcissistic mother. I'm not sure of the services offered these days, but I was an 80's kid. There was no support and it seems that there is no awareness about this and how much it can screw someone up. I lost my brother to suicide 9 months ago and that lost, without a purpose feeling after losing the only person that I have ever loved unconditionally and who loved me more than anyone else has ever loved me, forced me to try to find myself. I had a mentally and physically ill abusive and selfish mother, a father whose role was to work hard and provide money instead of hugs and my schitzoaffective, ice addicted baby brother who was my entire world but who I lacked the power to save. I always knew there was something wrong with me but I couldn't put my finger on it. I was perceived as being strong and resilient and helpful. A clinical psychologist once gave me the "resilient" diagnosis which made me decide that she was an over qualified idiot and that no one could ever help me because I was "too strong and resilient" for anyone to understand. I'm 34 now, and it took the loss of my brother plus 9 months to realize that I don't know who I am. All I have ever known is how to accommodate the needs of my mother, my father and my brother. I never even realized that I needed to be a human instead of being the rock that tried to hold everything together for everyone else. I am working with a psychologist now and I have told her that I am a parentified child and I don't know how to feel my feelings like a normal person and I am sure it will require much work and a long time but I know I'll find myself eventually. I'm just frustrated that I never knew that this was a "thing" before. And it upsets me to know that there are and will be other children who will grow into adults knowing something is wrong but never knowing what it is or why.

Lennox Narcissistic victim seeking help
  • replies: 5

Researching NPD about 2 years ago I came across this website and a description of narcissistic victim syndrome. It was a revelation. It described my husbands behavior and the effect it has had on my me and our children as if written about us. I am (o... View more

Researching NPD about 2 years ago I came across this website and a description of narcissistic victim syndrome. It was a revelation. It described my husbands behavior and the effect it has had on my me and our children as if written about us. I am (or was) an intelligent woman, naturally caring and empathetic. I have been married for 20 years to a damaged man who demonstrates all the signs of NPD. He came from a broken home and has no real relationships with his family. He left school at 15 and had been very successful in creating his own business but hides major insecurity. He is obsessed with power, fame, control, success, recognition etc and has no interest at all in anyone else. Our first child was born with major developmental problems and I gave up my legal career to become her full time carer. She died aged 8, 10 years ago. We have 2 other girls now 13 & 15. When she died he was devastated but had spent the last weeks of her life out telling everyone she was dying whereas I was at home alone nursing her. He is very generous financially and we have a very comfortable life but I feel so lonely and am in effect a sole parent. I have told him many time that we are scared of him but he just tells me I'm speaking nonsense. Both children are scared of his anger and rages and feel he has no interest in their lives. The dog won't go near him! He genuinely thinks he is the worlds best dad. We have no real family friends as he has burnt everyone he comes across. His staff are scared of him and he treats them badly. I am constantly walking on eggshells afraid to say the wrong thing and made to feel everything is my fault. He has dramatic rages and says horrible things then is all sweet and acts as if it never happened. It is always his way or the highway. He resents my intelligence and tries to crush me.He has succeeded in making me feel worthless. I was diagnosed with brain cancer last year and had surgery to remove a tumour and have to be monitored regularly. I dealt with this with little complaint and tried to get on with everything within a week. He was genuinely upset about the diagnosis but seems to enjoy telling everyone for the drama and attention he receives, whereas I feel it is a very private thing. My family all live interstate. My father died in January which devastated me. My mother is unwell and no support. I need to find the courage to leave but want to protect the children. I don't know where to start. Any help would be appreciated.

johnxx Marriage breakdown
  • replies: 1

Hi All, I really don’t know when to start, but I guess I join this site tonight hoping someone out there can listen without any judgements. My wife and i was dating for 2 years and now marriage for just over a year, i guess the problem start shortly ... View more

Hi All, I really don’t know when to start, but I guess I join this site tonight hoping someone out there can listen without any judgements. My wife and i was dating for 2 years and now marriage for just over a year, i guess the problem start shortly after we dated. We were so in love at the begining. We were so in love at the beginning, she was everything I was looking for, beautiful smart independent woman with values that I loved. Things was going perfectly, both of us couldn’t believe we have found each other. About 3 month into the relationship we hit our first major hurdle, I lost my job just before Christmas. I was devastated knowing that I wouldn’t be able to find another job until the holidays are over, and at this point I had only about few thousand dollar to my name. But not know when I can find a new job, trying to figure out how I’m going to pay me rent and utilities was least of my worries, more importantly I was worried that i’m going to lose this girl of my dream, I my mind all I can think about is she going to think I’m such a loser cant even afford rent and utilities. I guess in my mind I was the man and I need to provide for the people I care about. So for the next few weeks I just shut down completely and close myself of the her, this made her feel neglected and that I didn’t care about her (the funny is this was the complete opposite to what I was feeling inside, I love and care so much and I was so scared of losing her). After the new year 2016 few and I decided to start our own company, I was really reluctant to ask my (wife now) that I need to borrow money for this new business as we not long into the relationship but to my surprise without any hesitation she gave me ten thousand dollars. 3 years later I now have an extremely successful business and financially we are able to do what we want. But once again I’m in the same position 3 years ago with my wife, i need to spend a lot of time and effort on the business and she once again feel im neglecting her. But this is the complete opposite of what I want for her and our family in the future, to me giving my family the financial freedom is what I feel is important.

LoveSOS Relationship has reached very toxic levels, but I'm too afraid to leave.
  • replies: 2

I [24M] been with my partner [also 24M] for just over 5 years now, and we've been living together for just over 3 of those. In that time my partners depression and anxiety has escalated to pretty severe levels. He has been seeing a psychologist for o... View more

I [24M] been with my partner [also 24M] for just over 5 years now, and we've been living together for just over 3 of those. In that time my partners depression and anxiety has escalated to pretty severe levels. He has been seeing a psychologist for over 12 months, and has also been taking medication. He also uses daily marijuana to try and curb his anxiety. I have supported him the whole time we live together. I work two jobs, but still don't make enough money to sustain us. I'm in heaps of credit card debt and stressed all the time. The way that stress manifests itself with me is I become very quiet, sullen, and I pull back. I'm also constantly exhausted, and find it hard to stay awake. My partner has noticed this change, and he's reacted negatively. He sometimes says hurtful things about me, which really bring me down, but mainly he tells me that I need to do more to show my affection to him, and often gives me a list of things I should be doing (eg take him on a weekend trip - something I can't do because I have to work). I try and take this feedback on board, and I really try to shift my behaviour to give him the love and attention he needs in his dark times, though some days my stress is too much and I just want to be in bed alone as soon as I get home. I've also started to be more honest about why I'm stressed, hoping it clears things up. Recently he's started to say that my closed off behaviour is emotional abuse, me saying I'm trying to change is gaslighting him, and that I'm guilt tripping him by explaining things. It was never my intention to hurt him ever, or do any of those things, but I understand that my behaviour has and I feel horrible. Over the weekend we got in an argument. I tried to take responsibility for my behaviour but also explain that I'm under too much stress. That set him off in a scary way. He said that I refuse to take responsibility, want to place it all on to him, called me ugly, vapid, privileged, insulted my family, said that I'm solely responsible for his depression. He screamed in my face, threatened to fight me, he stole my phone and tried to smash it, and most distressingly texted my housemate saying that I told him to commit suicide so that if anything happened I would take the blame (I did not and would never). He then broke down crying saying nobody loved him. I do love him. I love him a lot. But I have never felt this low before. I am scared to be in this relationship, but I am scared about what leaving might do.

Mark h Current marriage crisis
  • replies: 2

Hi First of all a little about myself.I am an extremely lucky and fortunate person in that I have the wonderful wife and two perfect boys. Six years ago I had what can only be described as a major meltdown. I own my own publishing company which is hu... View more

Hi First of all a little about myself.I am an extremely lucky and fortunate person in that I have the wonderful wife and two perfect boys. Six years ago I had what can only be described as a major meltdown. I own my own publishing company which is hugely successful however one day when at a local shopping centre I went home and found that I was suffering extreme depression. To cut a long story short I was lucky to find a psychiatrist in Melbourne who after six months managed to find the right medication that I should be on. I am now classed as bipolar with day to day anxiety. Every day life managing a business and looking after my family takes effort but also a great deal of pleasure. I love my two boys and my wife immensely and my business is something that keeps me extremely busy which is a great distractions from sometimes feeling like I can’t cope. After 20 years of being married I feel our relationship is spiralling downwards fast. My 16 year old son is amazing and is fortunate to ride horses which he has done very well with. He is also going through those tricky teenage years. We have always clashed to be honest and we’ve often had highly heated words that result in us shouting and screaming(but never physical). Because my wife is also extremely horse minded, they both travel interstate a great deal together and my son never wants me there as he says I will just be embarrising. I am finding it difficult but for example in the next 4 months they are away from the home and business for at least 60% of the time and all weekends. Yesterday was awful. Our dogs were chasing our horses and my son stormed into the room and told me that it was either them or him. Just a teenage drama which is fine but this escalated, he called me a liar and the next thing you know the screaming was back on again. My wife who has gone through this for many years then snapped. I do find it hard when they go away for long periods but I have also encouraged everything I can to make this dream of theirs happen. My wife told me that I am jealous of everytime they go for trips and that she had now come to the end. She now needs a break and has said that she will talk with me in a week. I try so hard to keep this anxiety under control but sometimes it over powers everything I do. I also drink 4 beers a night and am thinking of giving this up. I see my 16 year old as always trying to over rule what I say and do. Maybe even trying to be the alpha male. I need help mark

mummabear22 Should I stay or should I go?
  • replies: 7

My partner decided in September 2017 that he would start an affair with another girl. After moving interstate I thought this was all over - but have just found out he is still in very regular contact with her (only over the phone but multiple times a... View more

My partner decided in September 2017 that he would start an affair with another girl. After moving interstate I thought this was all over - but have just found out he is still in very regular contact with her (only over the phone but multiple times a day). We have a 6 year old child together and he tells me he wants more kids - but chats to some other girl daily which rips me apart. It’s been a very long road since I found out he cheated on me - and I thought we were strong enough to get through.....to find out now he is still in contact with her makes me sick - and makes me want to run right now. Hardest part is that we live with and care for his mother, we have given up our family home to do this and now I have no where to go and no money to get out. I am the only one working and work bloody hard and feel like I’m getting no where. I pay our bills, pay back his debts, pay for all things needed for our child and even end up funding his drinking, smoking and gambling habits (Cos if I don’t I’m scared what will happen). He has never been physically violent but I feel he has me on the edge and have no option but to meet his requests for cash for his habits. I get no time to do anything nice for myself (don’t have cash for it any way) and feel so unloved from him. He tells me he loves me (most of the time I say it first and he says it back) but he very rarely kisses, cuddles or shows affection (certainly no sex happening). Most nights he passes out and doesn’t even say goodnight to me or our child. I love him so much and do not want to end our relationship but he will not agree to any kind of help, and I just don’t feel it’s fair that I feel so crap and unloved - I wanna be happy - but wanna be happy with him......and don’t want to raise our child in a broken home. So confused