Not sure I am capable of having a relationship
Really not sure where to start...
I have posted only once before, so am fairly new to this. I guess I am doubting my ability to maintain a healthy relationship.
I thought we were happy, but we have some serious step parenting issues. I am a few years older than my partner but my kids are at a different stage (one independent and out of the nest, other in last couple of school years), his are later primary school and first year of high school and still having what I see as toddler issues.
I have my own issues with anxiety and mild depression and am finding it so hard to cope with the fallout and anguish that comes from their behaviour. I keep my own home and he has his.
I have tried in recent years (after alcoholic parent, lazy and spendthrift ex husband, and subsequent relationship with a psycho stalker ) to distance myself from conflict. I don’t deal with it well - I bottle things and then blow my stack - that’s my M.O
My current partner was very understanding, but now struggles to see why I won’t move in despite the fact that I have diminishing patience with his kids. I love him but feel if I have to live with kids behaving badly it will wreck our relationship. I know that is supremely selfish but isn’t that better than moving in and being a horrid stepmother?
I have tried to explain how I feel but I don’t think I’m getting anywhere..
I feel like all relationships are too hard, I am still hoping this one will work but I’m feeling very low and don’t know if I have the energy required to help it work. I sort of feel it’s not worth it but not because I don’t love him but because I so can’t be bothered... with any sort of effort at all. At this stage everything is an effort. I have dropped off social media because it pisses me off how people see one happy post and assume everything is perfect (I am generally an optimist so I do get it but I still hate it). I do love my partner - I know I won’t find better because he is wonderful but I wonder if I would be better single...
Thanks for taking the time to share what is going on with you. You sound really conflicted and I feel for you.
How do you manage your anxiety and depression? Have you ever tried to spend time with a counsellor or psychologist to manage the bottling of things? I ask as a lot of us have that tendency but I have recently discovered that it is better for all parties if I communicate before things escalate and I say things I regret.
Still on the communication theme, you state that you have tried to talk to your partner about why you don't want to move in together. That sounds reasonable and what does he say when you explain the behaviour issues you see in his kids?
Do you have motivation concerns in other areas of your life or is it only regarding your relationship?
It is important to look after yourself so that you can be a valuable mother, partner, friend, worker etc.
Look forward to hearing from you.
Hi Blue Jane,
Thank you for your reply. To answer your questions - I have been seeing a psychologist which is helping.
when I tell my partner how I am feeling, particularly re the children’s behaviour, he acknowledges that it is a problem and says he is trying to deal with it, but this has been an issue between us and has gotten worse in the last 12 months. I suggested about a year ago that we should seek assistance with parenting strategies, he agreed but did nothing about it. Now I think he is starting to realise as we are seeing a counsellor together.
the problem is that he sees this as me criticising his parenting. I suppose that is correct and that I am, I know I’m not perfect and not a perfect parent but I also know that I don’t want to lose my peace and sanctuary.
i do have motivation issues in other areas too but I’m trying to work on that. I think I would make a good hermit so I try and make sure I meet with friends, my work is a struggle at present which is worrying me because I’m self employed. My house is a mess compared to how it normally would be, and I hate feeling disorganised. I never used to be - I just can’t be bothered.
Seeing a counsellor together is a great thing. Not everyone would agree to doing that. It sounds like you care about your partner and his kids, which is why you want things to improve. It is not necessarily criticism, just ideas on how to make things better for all of you.
Sounds like you have a lot of self awareness which is another positive. A few of us would make great hermits!
Have you tried any natural strategies to bring back your motivation and improve your mindset? Like exercise and eating different foods? What about meditation, music and mindfulness?
I read a variety of books to keep my mind ticking over, it is also a great distraction technique to keep me from always focusing on the day to day.