Relationship and family issues

Anything to do with managing relationships and family, including parenting, separation, loneliness, divorce, family and friendships.

FAQ

Find answers to some of the more frequently asked questions on the Forums.

Forums guidelines

Our guidelines keep the Forums a safe place for people to share and learn information.

Announcement Icon
You can win one of three $200 gift cards. Complete our survey by 5pm, 30 June 2024 AEST to enter the draw. Your response will be anonymous so you can't be identified.

Pinned discussions

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

Solique Supporting a Loved One with Addiction
  • replies: 1

I don’t know where to begin — the beginning would be appropriate, but I only have 2,500 words (less than now) to tell my story; to tell my story from the very beginning would be next to impossible, so I’ll tell my story the best I can. July 22, 2017 ... View more

I don’t know where to begin — the beginning would be appropriate, but I only have 2,500 words (less than now) to tell my story; to tell my story from the very beginning would be next to impossible, so I’ll tell my story the best I can. July 22, 2017 my life changed. My partner was assaulted. He suffered a brain haemorrhage and a seizure while in hospital for 7 days. A week or two after he was discharged from hospital, his father died unexpectedly. While overcoming his trauma from the assault, he now had to overcome grief, trauma, depression and anxiety due to the death of his father. On Christmas Eve of last year, my partner had a self-induced medical emergency. He was unresponsive but thankfully he pulled through. But his mental health has worsened since. (His GP and Psychiatric team have restricted medication from him due to this) He does see a Psychologist and his local GP every week to every two weeks—he has good support from his mum, as well as myself. Due to his mental illnesses, he has engaged in a lot of self-destructive behaviours such as gambling, abusing prescription medication (as mentioned earlier, he is not allowed to be prescribed them so he buys them “from the street”) and he cheated on me too. Prior to the 22nd of July my partner would not engage in any of these behaviours. He was loyal to me and to himself. He was intelligent, caring and loving. He’s not who he is now. Basically, I don’t know what to do anymore. We did separate for a week once, where I stayed at my parents, but we worked on our relationship. Last night, I found out he was still trying to buy drugs and I was so angry, I had to walk away and this time I thought it was the end. We discussed it again today and he said he wants to get help and he admits his addiction to prescription medication. And he wants me to support him too. How can I support him when I find it hard to trust him? I want to be there for him, and I will, but I need advice on what to do next. How to help someone with an addiction and how to teach myself into thinking that he’s not doing it to hurt me—he’s doing it because he is in pain. I should add, I do also see a Psychologist and will be seeing a Psychiatrist for an assessment for potentially having Borderline Personality Disorder. Any advice and support port would be appreciated—I’d even love to read stories of similiar situations.

Richmond101 Confused in a new relationship
  • replies: 3

I have been in a relationship with my girlfriend for 6 weeks now and have been seeing her for around 3 months but i dont have strong feelings towards her. We are both 20. She makes me happy when im with her and i love spending time with her but i jus... View more

I have been in a relationship with my girlfriend for 6 weeks now and have been seeing her for around 3 months but i dont have strong feelings towards her. We are both 20. She makes me happy when im with her and i love spending time with her but i just dont have the strong feelings like i have experienced in past relationships. Do these feelings take time to develop? because in the past they have developed quickly but obviously those relationships didnt work out. my last relationship wasn't a long one but i did get screwed over a few times but that was nearly 2 years ago now. I dont find her attractive all the time and when i first met her i didn't find her overly attractive. I found her to rather just be a genuine good person with heaps of qualities that i like. we get along really well and we make each other happy. I just dont have that spark that i have felt in the past when you just have that chemistry. Im worried that if i dont have that then the relationship wont work out. I feel comfortable around her though and that i can be myself. I have had allot of ocd the past year and am trying to recover from some very bad periods and still experience high amounts of anxiety so im not sure if that has an effect. I get days where im doubting everything and just feel guilty because i feel like ill just hurt her because i know her feelings are stronger then mine. But i dont just want to quit on her because we get along so well and i like what we have. she is important to me and makes my life better i feel. I have communicated to her that i get these doubts and my feels arnt super strong. I Just dont want to hurt her. Please help!!

Deemar Depressed husband
  • replies: 2

My husband lost his sister to cancer 6 months. One prior to his sister passing, I miscarried at 6 weeks. We've always had ups and downs. My husband has always suffered depression before our 2 years of marriage and 7 year relationship. He had self est... View more

My husband lost his sister to cancer 6 months. One prior to his sister passing, I miscarried at 6 weeks. We've always had ups and downs. My husband has always suffered depression before our 2 years of marriage and 7 year relationship. He had self esteem issues and hard on himself. We met at work and he is my first relationship. I too suffer from anxiety and it was hard for me to meet people. I found comfort with him as he is a really nice person and I thought we could move past his depression and my anxiety and make our relationship work. I had to work hard in our marriage and took on the responsibilities of setting up our finances and admin, our home and routine. I wasn't close to his immediate family and often felt they didn't approve of me. I also felt his parents enabled his lack of responsibility and being on top of things as they babied him too much. I felt I had to train him to be the husband I needed. In the process of doing this my husband said I neglected him and his feelings. I never spoke to him about his depression and when his sister passed he feels I haven't supported him enough. He blames me for everything, tells me I've done nothing to help him, he yells at me and swears at me when I do something to upset me, he throws things in frustration and threatens to leave if I don't change. We are currently separated because I couldn't cope with his abuse and blame. He tells me that each day I'm away the worse it gets. I've tried explaining how his behaviour hurts me but he tells me I keep neglecting his hurt and emphasise only my own. We get no where. I don't know what to do. I feel guilty for leaving him yet it's for me to go back to him constantly blaming me. I've tried explaining this to him but there is no reasoning. He told me the other day he is going to resign from his job. I asked him how he planned on paying the mortgage and he got mad at me as my focus should have been on his depression nor the mortgage. Any advise of what to do would be greatly appreciated. Thank you

Bullant Lost, Confused, Is it supposed to be this hard
  • replies: 1

Hello I am new to this, please forgive me if I rant. Don’t really know where to start. I was diagnosed with depression many years ago. I have been on medication for about 2 - 3 years. I feel the medication does help, but I still lapse into the dark p... View more

Hello I am new to this, please forgive me if I rant. Don’t really know where to start. I was diagnosed with depression many years ago. I have been on medication for about 2 - 3 years. I feel the medication does help, but I still lapse into the dark place from time to time and struggle to pull myself out of it. 7 months ago, I had to take a job away from home and only spend 3 days with family out of 21. At the start of the job I lost my father to illness in the first week and became very depressed. I felt in the last 4 months I had come good and things were going ok. On my last break at home, some thing happened and I snapped and lost my cool with my 15 year old daughter, I humiliated her in front of her boyfriend and family. I knew when I was yelling at her that I was doing the wrong think but kept going. I have never before yelled at her like this, she is my princess. I immediately went to that dark place and could not pull myself out. Had arduement with wife, to be told she has had enough and they all felt I didn’t like coming home to them. We are now looking to go our separate ways and it’s breaking my heart. I think I am getting through ok, and then told by the ones I love nothings changed. I love my wife dearly, she is my sole mate, but I have put her through hell for many years and my heart tells me I should let her go because I am hurting her to much. I feel very alone and lost, I have no one to talk to. I am sick of feeling this way, I have made many mistakes in my life and still paying for them. The thought of loosing my family is to much to bear. Is life supposed to be this hard!!!! I’m over it.

Fred22 Separated for 4 years and it still hurts
  • replies: 6

Hi I’ve posted elsewhere about starting a new job and getting through that and out of the blue all these really heavy emotions and feelings about my wife and my daughter came flooding out. it hurts so much and I thought I was controlling it over the ... View more

Hi I’ve posted elsewhere about starting a new job and getting through that and out of the blue all these really heavy emotions and feelings about my wife and my daughter came flooding out. it hurts so much and I thought I was controlling it over the years but with all this happening it just came out snd is crushing me - I want them back in my life / but they won’t snd I am so alone, no friends, no relationships, no life - very miserable i have no idea how to make friends, form relationships or to ever trust anyone again - has anybody got any advice please?

Cheesetoastie Marriage break up
  • replies: 7

Hi everyone, Pretty new here. Recently my wife and I have split up after a 8 yr long relationship. I’m struggling a little bit in day to day life to get through things and my concentration has gone downhill a fair bit. The hardest bit is trying to sl... View more

Hi everyone, Pretty new here. Recently my wife and I have split up after a 8 yr long relationship. I’m struggling a little bit in day to day life to get through things and my concentration has gone downhill a fair bit. The hardest bit is trying to sleep at night. Super difficult at the moment, and I’ve never had problems sleeping before. Through our relationship I helped her move past some pretty horrific childhood abuse and now she’s moved through that, she said she needs to be on her own to learn to live independently. I can understand this, but it still makes me feel a used and disregarded. I’ve always been the emotional and financial support and has cost me a huge amount of time, energy, friends and experiences. Im doing regular exercise, not drinking excessively and still remaining social and working which I’ve been managing relatively well considering the circumstances. Sleep is super hard though and this is making the other areas in my life much more difficult to manage. Not sure what I’m expecting from this thread. Maybe just some people to talk to or someone going through something similar. No idea. Does anyone have any suggestions on getting used to sleeping solo again?

Bagsi Confused about my relationship
  • replies: 1

Don’t know if this is right but here goes. I’m 44 and have been in the same relationship for 28 Years. I don’t know if I love my husband anymore. I know he is not nice to anyone and I hate it. He can be very judgemental. I feel like I have to tread a... View more

Don’t know if this is right but here goes. I’m 44 and have been in the same relationship for 28 Years. I don’t know if I love my husband anymore. I know he is not nice to anyone and I hate it. He can be very judgemental. I feel like I have to tread around on egg shells just to keep the peace at home. My children are 21 and 18. They hate the way they are spoken to and how I am treated. I don’t know what is normal any longer I feel like going away and never being found. It’s too hard

Tropicana I don’t want to be supermum - I want to be human
  • replies: 4

sorry this is long. It’s obviously postpartum depression but I know it’s heavily influenced by other factors. I’ve got two kids - 18 month old boy and 8 week old girl. Husband works away 4/5 days at a time, but once a month is gone for 7 days. I stay... View more

sorry this is long. It’s obviously postpartum depression but I know it’s heavily influenced by other factors. I’ve got two kids - 18 month old boy and 8 week old girl. Husband works away 4/5 days at a time, but once a month is gone for 7 days. I stay home with the kids. since giving birth to the baby I’ve been slipping into helplessness trying to care for the kids, the house, sleep deprivation, and general life on my own for days at a time. I finally went to the doctor on the advice of the community nurse. He wrote a referral to a psych. And gave me general advice - sleep, eat well.. all things That are difficult with so much weighing me down. I had to cancel the appointment because we couldn’t get anyone to Watch our kids. it’s rescheduled for when hubbys home. He wanted to come to help manage this together. He’s currently on the week stretch. i barely eat. I forget to drink water. My neck back shoulders are aching from lifting children and feeding. I have a carrier but lifting my 15kg boy is excruciating as I have to be careful not to crush her. So we stay home. I can’t even fuel the car up unless someone’s with me as the only “pay at the pump” station here never works. I don’t want to get both kids out of the car for 30 secs (the toddler keeps running off on me). I was an avid gym goer. Now with two kids it’s hard getting there by a set time, and most of the time it’s too full to take both so we can’t go at all. after this morning I resigned myself to the fact that my last outlet, going to the gym, has to go. I was late and only had 15 minutes left.I don’t make excuses for not getting exercise. It was the last factor of my identity I had. i am always forgetful and blasé. I ask “what day it is” every day. I forget to pay bills, I don’t ring people back. My mother does help, even staying over once or twice a week at night to let me sleep more than 6 hours, but it’s not something a night of sleep can fix. My sister used to help but doesn’t offer anymore. When I have asked out of desperation she makes me feel extremely uncomfortable. it’s horrible to feel guilty when you have no other options. i feel like I’m dying. The GP asked if I was suicidal and I said no, but this life will kill me instead. These last few weeks I’ve felt a sense of helplessness, not just sadness as basic human functions are becoming desperately out of reach. i don’t want to be commended for being supermum. I just want to be a normal human being.

unicornprincess29 Feeling alone :(
  • replies: 1

So my BF and I have been together for around 4 years now. The past couple of days things have been a bit rough and it’s left me feeling a bit alone and unloved. My BF is currently going through some issues with a group of his friends, and they happen... View more

So my BF and I have been together for around 4 years now. The past couple of days things have been a bit rough and it’s left me feeling a bit alone and unloved. My BF is currently going through some issues with a group of his friends, and they happen to run a side business together so he’s been stressed and I guess angry at how things have been. It’s been an ongoing thing for a few months now but it all really boiled over the last few days. So yesterday he was so angry that he also didn’t want to talk to me and when I tried to talk to him he just ignored me, so I just have him his space, and I know him well enough to know he usually just needs a few hours or to sleep on it and he’s usually normal with me the next day. However he hasn’t really spoken to me today either. When he came home from work, he just ignored me until I went to talk to him and even then I only got a few words out of him. I totally understand that he clearly feels he needs his space at the moment, but its just hard because I’m currently in my exam period at uni so my stress levels are kind of everywhere and I could really use some support and affection. I feel like he also knows that his behaviour the last few days has made me upset, but it almost feels like he doesn’t care (which I know isn’t true but it’s just how it feels)

E_motion Trouble letting go
  • replies: 1

He everyone, New to the forum, could do with some support. My parter ended our relationship just over a month ago. We were together for 2 years. We have definitely had our up and downs along the way, myself not ready for commitment at the time when s... View more

He everyone, New to the forum, could do with some support. My parter ended our relationship just over a month ago. We were together for 2 years. We have definitely had our up and downs along the way, myself not ready for commitment at the time when she was, got us off to a rocky start. She suffers from ptsd and she finds it hard to open up especially about her feelings. I suffer from anxiety, and can be quite negative towards my feeling also. But at times would bring each other down with our negative thinking. Don't get me wrong, we had a very strong connection from day one and I have never felt the way I have towards her in any of my past relationships. I loved her and she also loved me. Unfortunately she went a bit off me a few days prior to the breakup so I asked her what was wrong but she couldn't give me a real answer to why she started feeling the way she did. Stupid me gave her the altermatum and she decided to end things.. I had to move back to me parents place (I'm 33) which was quite hard after many years of living away from them. I messaged her the next day to try and organise I time we could talk about what had happened, but I got "you said it was my decision, I've made it. It's done now. I need you to give me space and I'm not going to re-consider" As you can probably tell, I have been an absolute mess the for the last mont. I haven't been sleeping, my anxiety has been out of control and I had had to take time off work due to stress. I meeaged her a few days ago and expressed my feeling towards her, we both need to work on ourselves right now and I respect her decision. I do want us to be together again. All I got back from her was thanks for the message, not to be too had on myself moveing forward and to take care of myself and people you bring into your life in the future... It felt like such I strange and cold message to receive from her. I dont know if this is something she can't really express because it's too hard for her. I'm just left confused and emotional unstable right now. It's just really hard to let go.