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

Broken_forever Why is life so cruel
  • replies: 2

I can't recover from my break up. Its been a year since the man I loved so much left me for another woman. Its killing me. We were together 16yrs life was amazing we had an awesome tight loving family. Our kids were the happiest kids. We all loved li... View more

I can't recover from my break up. Its been a year since the man I loved so much left me for another woman. Its killing me. We were together 16yrs life was amazing we had an awesome tight loving family. Our kids were the happiest kids. We all loved life every memory is an amazing one right up until he left. He threw me and our family our hopes our dreams our future away like trash. Now he hates me won't talk to me and has our kids apart of his new life. He doesn't care for me at all. Doesn't care that I'm struggling to raise his kids. I already suffered anxiety now I'm suffering deep depression along with physical effects from stress etc. Life is hard I have no family to help me. My kids are suffering behavior wise from their dads sudden departure and then being thrown into his new life. I can't take it anymore. My kids are all I live for but it hurts so much sending them to him and hearing how amazing their lives are while I'm broken so bad. I see no future anymore my days are dark. Its hard to even fake smiles for my babies. I find it hard to get up and do even what needs to be done. I hold back tears when attending school events my ex and I were so involved in their schooling now he couldn't seem to care less he has them for one and s half days then sends them home. He won't talk to me at all so he doesn't seem to ask about anything that's going on with them. He won't help with money either he cries poor but yet my kids explain a different version. He knows how expensive kids are but yet tells me through other people like I said he will not even talk to me on the phone he has no job so no money so can't help. So I have major financial worries on top of everything else. I really don't know how much more I can take. Everything goes wrong to nothing but bad thing after bad thing has happened all year like car breaking down fridge blowing up no air conditioner kids have missed out on excursions the list goes on. How some one could turn so incredibly cruel I will never understand all I done was love him. He chose someone else why does he have to hurt me so much. He's hurt his kids so much to and all that seems to matter to him is his new gf new life and her kids. I'm seeing psychologist on medication doing what I can to get better but I feel like I'm drowning trying so hard to keep my head above the water. But I'm so tired exhausted unhappy I'm just about ready to give up

kitty8 mother in law advice
  • replies: 2

Hi, I need some advice about my in-laws who are possibly the most controlling and manipulative people I have ever met. My husband and I have had counselling to work through some of the problems with them, and if we didn't have a child who should be a... View more

Hi, I need some advice about my in-laws who are possibly the most controlling and manipulative people I have ever met. My husband and I have had counselling to work through some of the problems with them, and if we didn't have a child who should be able to see her grandparents from time to time, I probably would avoid them even more than I do. they seem to prefer indirect communication (are passive aggressive) and are also intolerant of opinions and views that differ to their own. Basically if they don't like what we say or are doing, they pester my husband until he gives in and agrees with them, and then we still do what we think is right even if it is different to their opinion and they don't like it that we don't take their advice. They also gossip with all the extended family. Because of these behaviours we try not to tell them much about our lives, or ask them to help us out much. What happened most recently was they were staying for four nights with us, and helped us out with some work in the garden, and looked after our daughter for 2 days while we were at work. then today when they left (we went to work in the morning and left them at home after dropping our daughter at day care) they left our front door was wide open! we are lucky that we weren't robbed as the front door must have been open for hours as they left to drive back to Sydney in the afternoon. What likely happened was they got carried away doing things in the garden and our house (that we didn't ask them to do) which meant they were running late and in their rush, left the front door open. leaving the front door open is just the last straw. the in laws are not that old ( in their 60's and perfectly healthy so it wasn't due to old age or forgetfulness or anything really) My in-laws passive aggressive behaviour tells me that they do not respect my husband (their son) and me as responsible adults and I am at a loss as to what to do. when we got home my husband rang his parents to tell them they had left the front door wide open and the house unlocked. they were a bit angry on the phone, saying that we had not thanked them for all the garden work (but they had done way more than we had asked for help with only a few small jobs). It may not sound like much, but I kind of at a loss as to what do, other than to see them even less than we do now, but I am mindful that my 3 year old needs to see her grandparents. how often do you think is enough for exhausting interstate visitors?

Mummyworried27 Worried about hubby
  • replies: 3

My hubby has been having a very stressful time lately. At the end of July he started getting numbness and pain in his left arm. Dr thankfully ruled out life threatening problems, but still waiting on hemochromatosis gene test results plus MRI on the ... View more

My hubby has been having a very stressful time lately. At the end of July he started getting numbness and pain in his left arm. Dr thankfully ruled out life threatening problems, but still waiting on hemochromatosis gene test results plus MRI on the neck results. On top of that at the end of July I called enough to his father's lies and broken promises (same promise broken to our 7 yr old ASD son for 2 years). So I told his narcissist father he wasn't to have anything to do with our 3 kids, but hubby could keep contact if he wished. Only I've seen his father is using him as a pawn now in txt messages and hubby I can see is feeling guilty but is trying to be the loving son. (He also told his father about his arm problem on the 1st August and not once has he asked how it's going). I think he could have depression but not sure how to get him to the psychologist as when he went last time with his anxiety he reckons it wasn't much help.

Cloudydays1 I want him to come home.
  • replies: 12

I have been in a two year relationship with a guy who I thought was the one. We met in my home town, lived there for six months together, then decided to move across the country to his home town. At first, we lived with his parents which was really h... View more

I have been in a two year relationship with a guy who I thought was the one. We met in my home town, lived there for six months together, then decided to move across the country to his home town. At first, we lived with his parents which was really hard for me. I didn’t feel comfortable there, and it took me a couple of months to find work. My whole life had changed and I felt I lost my sense of security and my identity. I didn’t have any friends or family here, and my concerns put stress on the relationship. After a couple of months, I ended up getting a job and we ended up getting our own place which we have been in for 9 months. Things have been much better. Over the last couple of months, I have been stressed with work and my stresses has negatively affected the relationship. I have been working on those issues. We have had a couple of arguments, but resolved things as they were not major issues. Two weeks ago, when we were on holiday, we had another argument - I wanted to spend quality time with him as I felt that’s what our relationship needed. He acted bizarrely when I asked him to organise something for us, he seemed unwilling and his attitude upset me. I ended up getting angry and upset. He packed his things and he left me, flew home, packed his essential items and left our home. I have spoken with him over the phone and met him face to face over the weekend. He said the relationship is over and he doesn’t see me in his future anymore. He said he loves me but is not in love with me. I poured my heart out and told him that I love him and I don’t think this was worth ending our relationship over and wanted to move forward. I apologised for the things I said before he left and promised him I would work on things. I asked him if we could put the past behind us and go and have fun together and start fresh. He said, “I’m not saying no, but I’m not saying yes either”. I am still living in our home, with all of our things. I want him to come home and want to work things out. I don’t know how to go about it. I am not coping very well.

N- New here, looking for a bit of a vent
  • replies: 2

I lost a dear friend of mine, we hadn’t been close for quite some time, but was a huge part of my life growing up, and was still a part of my life till they were gone. I think I’m almost back to my normal self now, I still think about them every day ... View more

I lost a dear friend of mine, we hadn’t been close for quite some time, but was a huge part of my life growing up, and was still a part of my life till they were gone. I think I’m almost back to my normal self now, I still think about them every day and their memories make me smile. But I cannot for the life of me get a grip on balancing my emotions. I go from feeling fine to crying, or fuming mad. The smallest thing that used to just make me sulk a little and move past brings me to tears. My little pet peeves drives me confronting people. I don’t know if this is me now, where I just can’t hold things in, or if I’m still going through some things.

johnboy_p relationship break up, afraid of being alone, and lonely
  • replies: 11

Hi new to this so not sure how it works i have just gone through a tough few years. first living apart from my wife and kids in different countries, then moved to be with them, then the marriage break up earlier this year after 18 years. Got in a new... View more

Hi new to this so not sure how it works i have just gone through a tough few years. first living apart from my wife and kids in different countries, then moved to be with them, then the marriage break up earlier this year after 18 years. Got in a new relationship which happen quicker than expected, then few months in, got dumped, for no reason and it was all has been going so well. This is my first really reach out for help, i should have asked a long time ago as i have been struggling internally with myself for so long, with feeling useless and alone and scared to ask for help. My story: being new to my location, i have only work colleagues as friends and most are typically younger and not in the same situation as me. as i have kids 50% of the time I dont get out and also dont like partying to much, and the school parents know the ex better due to her being here longer. i guess the dumping today has raised a lot of issues that have been simmering for some time. the lost of my marriage, which i probably didnt deal properly. The lonelness of living away, the worry of life, taking so long to get a job in the new location, the feeling of not feeling good about myself, the I want to hide when i finish work in my house, I also over think things and convince myself of something when sometimes nothings there. Ive go up and down depending on whats happening. i ran and ran when living away, to keep my mind off things, though i am run out now. i do things with people but generally very early in weekend so when its over i have to face the rest of the weekend alone. i am liked (i think) but generally dont do things with others. though i am t scared to ask fo rejection. sorry this is a brain dump, and have been crying all day and have realised i need help and support. i cant do this. i know all this may sound silly and hopefully the right place to start. i dont want to be alone. i dont feel i, strong enough though but i need to learn to be for my two beautiful kids. I need to get out and meet friends. what should i do.

Sunburst Awkward Outsider
  • replies: 5

All my life I felt that I just didn't fit in. I seem to say the wrong things all the time. So I find it difficult to make friends. In fact I don't have any. I find people say that I look lost or tired all the time. I am not very self aware of that so... View more

All my life I felt that I just didn't fit in. I seem to say the wrong things all the time. So I find it difficult to make friends. In fact I don't have any. I find people say that I look lost or tired all the time. I am not very self aware of that so I try and sound cheerful (yes a bungon) but that doesn't last as it gets pretty tiring. I try and be helpful to get someone to like me or acknowledge me but I feel all I do is get in the way. Making small talk to fit in is difficult for me as I never find anything to say. I read alot and being grateful for all the things I can think on has really helped me so I value in life and nature etc. And remembering that God has given me an opportunity for life. I feel that when I am really low though I insult people who are terminally ill by not making the most of mine. I am sorry for that. Work can be so difficult at times. I know most people do not like me at work as I have lashed out at them and complaining about what they have done wrong. And my colleagues appear to leave me out of conversations or they go out and not include me I suppose for good reason as I am the angry one at times. I found a good quote apparently by Winston Churchill... "Don't stop at every barking dog otherwise you will never reach your destination." And I can see that I do look at all the things that go wrong in life and be angry about it. If I am not at work I am in my room watching movies or reading. On a sunny day I see people going on boats together, doing outdoor activities, going to concerts etc. I can even imagine what it would be like to have the zeal to live life that way. I try to imagine that but I never can. I have been this way since I can remember. Is this just me?

Hope_ Feeling alone
  • replies: 11

Hi I am new to this and thought I would give this a try my whole schooling life I've been isolated and left out from my friends which went on up until year 12. My whole group of friends came up with a plan and decided they wanted to ignore me. This w... View more

Hi I am new to this and thought I would give this a try my whole schooling life I've been isolated and left out from my friends which went on up until year 12. My whole group of friends came up with a plan and decided they wanted to ignore me. This went on for months up until I finished year 12. I basically lost all my friends and it was for no reason, I hadn't done anything, just because they decided and used excuses from previous spats we had from years before as an excuse. No one has ever apologised to me for how they acted and put me through and it's been 8 years since. It's a memory that I unfortunately will never forget and the emotional pain still haunts me. ive had a boyfriend for 10 years and he became my bestfriend and was always there to support me through anything. For a couple years our relationship has started to crumble slowly. It's gotten to the point that he has limited time for me at all. I've tried to talk with him about how I'm feeling and he just doesn't have the time to care or even pretend to. He makes me feel so insignificant and small and puts me down when I cry. He thinks it's crocodile tears. It makes it really hard for me because I don't have any friends to talk to, I've only ever had him to turn to for support. I'm tired of feeling alienated and alone and without him in my life I will be completely alone i cry everyday and night, I can't sleep at night and I want and drink alcohol every single night. I know it's not healthy, I don't know how to get my boyfriend to see that I'm faking my feelings and to take my emotions seriously. I want to save our relationship but I feel too tired and whatever I do will be pointless to him

tandia Husband and family issues
  • replies: 3

Hi, first post for me. My husband has suffered from sever depression for many years. He finally went on antidepressants a year ago, which helped to some degree. However, he seems to be seeping back not talking, becoming angry and frustrating. He gets... View more

Hi, first post for me. My husband has suffered from sever depression for many years. He finally went on antidepressants a year ago, which helped to some degree. However, he seems to be seeping back not talking, becoming angry and frustrating. He gets angry over something and holds onto it for a very long time and sulks. We have two children 5 and 2 yrs old which are very wild, amazing but exhausting in nature. They push our limits and sometimes my husband will be too rough when handling our son. It makes me upset and Ihave tried to coach him to speak with a less angry tone, which he has been working on and less strength used. But he is still doing on occasions when he is very stressed. We have had a stressful time recently as I had a fall at work and have mild brain injury about 8 weeks ago, so i am getting better. However, it has been stressful for my husband to cope with this, as I am normally the happy glue that sticks us together. I have suffered mild depression and anxiety from the injury, but it will pass as I get better. Over the years I have thought of leaving my husband, as it gets too much sometimes. 11 years on I am still here. But I feel like I can't go on like this forever. Is it too much to expect him to change to be a better father? A more supportive and warm husband? I have tried to get him to seek counselling, and he won't do it. I'm not sure what to do anymore. We only get one go at this life time and I don't want to waste my life being unhappy. Thank you for reading.

Azura007 How do I get over losing my best friend and love?
  • replies: 7

I was in a long term relationship. We started as best friends, and love gradually came along. We would talk, see each other everyday, laugh and cry together, never fight over things unless there was an actual reason, and never fight for more than an ... View more

I was in a long term relationship. We started as best friends, and love gradually came along. We would talk, see each other everyday, laugh and cry together, never fight over things unless there was an actual reason, and never fight for more than an hour without making up. We talked about everything and anything, sharing our thoughts, fears and dreams for the world together. I suffer with mental illness due to childhood abuse and surviving cancer. I always made sure i didnt put my burdens on her. We agreed that she would give me space when i needed it, and at first that worked. But she would get upset if i asked for space, and would appear at my door crying. I would always make things right. Apart from the occational disagreement, things were amazing, and i started organising to propose to her. That changed two weeks ago. She spoke of a friend of hers liking her, i wasnt bothered by this, we had had stages in our relationship where we would see other people with permission. I had complete trust in her, and thought nothing of this friend. That was until she told me her friend was falling for her. After explaining to her that this made me uncomfortable, she said i was being unreasonable and she wouldn't change.I told her that it wasn't good for me to stay in such a situation and would leave. She made me stay and sorted the situation out, all is perfect again,or so i though. A week passes and she begins ignoring me when she cancels plans without explaination. 12 hours hours pass she finally answers the phone. She won't tell me what i have done wrong, but says she will see me in a few hours. We argue as she tells me we are toxic for each other, that she has been spending time with the other person behind my back and had cheated on me with another person on 3 seperate occations. Never before in our years together had problems been mentioned, nor had we argued more than an entire day in our lives together. We agreed that we wanted to work it out and go to see a psychologist, and she said she wanted us to work. We kiss goodbye with plans to see eachother later and that was cancelled i was ignored and i broke it off as she was going to break it off with me. I ask if we can be friends she said maybe if she can trust me again and her last words to me were that this other person had helped her realise i am manipulative, because i told her that i didnt know if i could live without her. I am starting to blame myself for everything am i manipulative? I dont know anymore