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Stress and Axiety dealing with my Parents

Community Member
Hi guys,
So I'm 20 and still living at home, however recently I've been feeling stressed and anxious at home. I feel like every decision I make my parents (dad in particular) thinks it is the wrong decision and while some of the decisions I make may not be the right decisions, I feel that the reactions I get aren't always the right reactions. Now the latest decision that I don't think was out of line, was to do with Christmas Lunch, so both my boyfriend’s family and my mum's family have decided to do a Christmas lunch, and so I said I would compromise and go to my boyfriend’s families lunch first, for at least an hour then I would attend my mum's side of the family's Christmas event. now I don't think that is that bad or anything, I'm making an effort to see everyone just compromising, however my dad seems to think I am choosing my boyfriend's family over my own and that I will be upsetting everyone. It's getting to the point where the constant 'judgement' of my decisions as an adult are stressing me to the point where I no longer want to go home. I pretty much make excuses to stay at my boyfriend’s house for extended periods of time and don't want to go back home. My boyfriend has said to me that I can stay at his house for as long as I need to help and honestly I’m thinking of saying yes, but I still worry what my parents will think and say. I am always on edge when the next phone call or text comes through telling me I'm disappointing and upsetting them. So if anyone can actually help that would be greatly appreciated
1 Reply 1

Community Member

Hi Hannah-R!

It sounds like your family is having a lot of trouble letting go and dealing with the fact that you are an adult now, and that you need to start carving out your own life. Whether they approve of your decisions or not is ultimately irrelevant, they are your decisions to make. They will need to move into a place of acceptance at some point or they will forever be trying to control you this way.

Christmas is such a hard time. It's impossible to please everyone once you have a significant other and their family to consider. It sounds like you've done the best you can saying you'll attend both lunches. I'm sorry you've received criticism. I know I've felt this way myself, and I'm 47 with kids lol. Lately, I've finally started being honest with both my family and in-laws about what I actually need from them, instead of trying in vain to please them all. I hope you can start doing this now instead of waiting until you're as old as I am.

If you are serious about your bf and want to spend time with him and his family, that's your right. You can explain to your own family that the criticism you receive makes the situation at their home uncomfortable for you and hope they start looking at their own behaviour. Unfortunately it's bound to be a hard talk, but it is better to speak up than go on trying to live up to their expectations. Take it from someone much older, you never get there. It's never enough, and you'll end up living years of your life for other people.

Nip it in the bud now, stand your ground and say 'I'm going to my boyfriend's because I want to, but I will see you later at X time. I love you all, and I hope we can have a nice time together when I'm here' or words to that effect. "I don't appreciate you making me feel guilty for having other people in my life' perhaps.

It may take several goes for it to sink in but they will have to accept they don't have the right to make your decisions for you at some point.

I hope this helps a little