My girlfriend and I met as teenagers and had a kid.
I'm in my late-20s now, we've been on and off.
Recently, we made a serious commitment to buy a place and move in together.
We both recognized that we had issues that needed to be resolved. Months later, there's no sign she's even trying to change her old ways.
By contrast, I've made significant changes. I feel that I'm pulling all the weight in this relationship.
There's no affection from her. Then there's her attitude problem - always screaming, not willing to communicate many times.
It's affecting the way I am, the way I look at her, my outlook in life.
I've told her this before. I want to be with her and my kid; however, I want to be happy and have a good relationship with a woman.
What should I do?
You need to be calm but firm, and tell her that screaming won't push away the fact that you're at a turning point: Either she agrees to go to couples' counselling with you, or you'll both be discussing a separation and child custody agreement.
I advise counselling because there has to be a reason for her lack of affection and her frustration, which needs probing. It may be something deep-rooted from her childhood, and/or she doesn't know how to communicate.
The fact that you've made changes is a positive step, and gives hope that you two can work this out. But you'll need professional guidance.
• Go to www.TherapistLocator.net to search for counselling options in your community.
My husband suffered from severe depression for several years but has made great progress towards recovery this year.
My in-laws often relied on me to update them.
During a visit to their house, while my husband was out jogging, I described his improvements (e.g., exercise, healthy eating, positive thinking, exploring hobbies and interests, etc.).
My in-laws responded that they thought he looked worse, and that his problems would be solved if he got a job.
I said we were considering employment, but he chose to focus on his physical health and didn't feel ready to work.
They kept questioning our judgment. (We're 34, well-educated, own our own home and I have a successful career.)
When I related the conversation to my husband privately, he told his parents he was ashamed of their treatment of me.
They then attacked my character and blamed their son's depression on me.
We left. We haven't seen them in six months, and my husband has only had two brief telephone conversations with his mother.
He's reluctant to resume a relationship unless they apologize to both of us. I doubt that an apology is forthcoming.
- How do we all move forward?
It's no easier for his parents to see their adult son suffer with depression and be stalled in his life progress, than it is for you.
Their questioning was poorly handled but, for the sake of your husband's ease of mind, as well as future family contact, I advise that you take the high road.
Tell Hubby that you appreciate that their harsh words came from worries about him and you both.
Phone his mother (or write her a note if you prefer) and say you're sure she'd agree that all will be happier if you put this behind you.
Unless absolutely necessary, you should no longer be his spokesperson.
Lately, my sister and I have been very far apart.
She met a new girl, whom she's known less than three months, and she's like best friends with her. She even wants to get an apartment with her.
She chooses this girl over me any day.
My sister always says, let's make plans to spend time together, but then she'll just forget and ditch me.
We used to be so close with each other.
- Very Hurt!
Your sister is entitled to her own best friend, just as you are, but she's unwise to move in with someone so soon.
Show concern for her rushing into this move, not jealousy.
She likely feels you're so close, you understand when she changes plans, but tell her she can't take you for granted or ditch you any more.
To get together, she has to come and get you, until you trust her again.
Tip of the day:
When it's impossible to communicate, couples need professional counselling.