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Kanchan Rai  |294 Answers  |Ask -

Relationships Expert, Mind Coach - Answered on May 20, 2024

Kanchan Rai has 10 years of experience in therapy, nurturing soft skills and leadership coaching. She is the founder of the Let Us Talk Foundation, which offers mindfulness workshops to help people stay emotionally and mentally healthy.
Rai has a degree in leadership development and customer centricity from Harvard Business School, Boston. She is an internationally certified coach from the International Coaching Federation, a global organisation in professional coaching.... more
Asked by Anonymous - May 19, 2024Hindi

Hello madam, I have a very toxic environment at my house, my mother is depressed because my father is 55 years old and looks around other woman in the village, my mother warned him many times but he don't listen to my mother, actually my father is an army retired so during his job they had very little time together, and after retirement there are lots of fights between them, I think my father is such an animal that one day he asked my mother to let him sleep with her friend, so my mother's friend stopped coming in our house, and my mother is short tempered, controlling personality, she wanted to control each and every person in the house, even after my marriage my mother want to control me and my wife, she pulls out our strings , Can I change them ? Or should I leave the house and start living away from them, as I said she is very controlling personality so she will not allow us to live at some other place because she puts a society pressure on us that what people will think, actually I don't care about other people saying but she emotionally blackmail us that she has done a lot of things for me , don't leave me alone in this house like this, I don't know what could be the right step. Should I leave the house and start living on my own or there is some way by which I can change them . Please help me take decision

Ans: Navigating such a complex and toxic family environment is incredibly challenging. It's important to recognize that while you may deeply care for your parents and want to help them, changing deeply ingrained behaviors and dynamics within a family, especially those involving control and emotional manipulation, is extremely difficult. Your mother's controlling nature and your father's inappropriate behavior are significant issues that likely require professional intervention, such as therapy, which they may or may not be willing to pursue.

Given the emotional toll this environment is taking on you, it is crucial to prioritize your mental and emotional well-being. Establishing boundaries is key. If you and your wife are constantly subjected to a controlling and toxic atmosphere, it can severely impact your relationship and personal happiness. Moving out and living independently could provide the necessary space to foster a healthier and more peaceful life. While this decision might be met with resistance and emotional blackmail from your mother, it's important to remember that your responsibility is first to yourself and your immediate family—your wife and, if applicable, your children.

Living separately doesn't mean abandoning your parents. You can still support them from a distance, visiting regularly and offering help when needed. This arrangement can also give your mother the opportunity to address her issues with your father without involving or impacting you and your wife directly. It's about finding a balance between being there for your parents and protecting your own well-being.

Ultimately, moving out could lead to healthier relationships all around, as distance might lessen the daily tension and allow everyone to develop more respectful and less intrusive ways of interacting. This decision requires courage and clear communication. Discuss your plans with your wife, ensure you are both on the same page, and approach your parents with empathy but firmness about your need for independence. While you can't change your parents, you can change how you interact with them and set boundaries to create a healthier environment for yourself and your future family.

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Anu Krishna  |1054 Answers  |Ask -

Relationships Expert, Mind Coach - Answered on Jan 04, 2022

I have been married for a little more than five years and I am living under tremendous stress and depression. We live in a joint family with my parents and an unmarried brother. I had told her all this before marriage. She loves me very much but her attitude towards my relatives has been a matter of concern right from the start. She does not want to keep a relationship with anybody apart from my immediate family. Slowly, she started having problems with my mother also; both have started having minor clashes at home. Many times, it is my mother’s mistake. The main problem is that she is very nagging and complains and gets irritated very frequently at the smallest instance. Frustrated, I planned on separating with her but the news came of her pregnancy and we were blessed with a baby girl. After the baby was born, my wife’s frustration and irritation has increased manifold because of her fear that my mother will give much more love to the baby then she can. So their clashes have increased. Now my wife has been putting a lot of pressure on me to look for a new house away from my parents, since she wants her own space. I already have a home loan on the existing home and a car loan. There is very less scope for me to purchase a new home and I don't want to leave my parents. She just doesn't understand my position and clashes happen between us. Looking at all this, I desperately want to separate from her but can't do so because of our daughter. I love her the most and can't live without her. So I just endure what is happening every day. This has resulted in me slipping into depression. It has affected my work in office as well. I am not performing well, I don't like to speak with any of my friends or relatives, I don't feel like doing anything. I’m living for the sake of my daughter, that's it. Even my parents are not in a position to understand me and my situation so I can't talk to them either. Can you help? Just don’t publish my name.


It is unfortunate that you are in this situation.

Your wife is possibly not very inclined to be in a joint family set-up; the reasons maybe many. But isn’t it necessary for you as a husband and a father to look out for your family?

The misunderstandings caused between the two of you over the years because of being in a joint family set-up have never been addressed and much water has flowed under the bridge.

There is a slim chance that matters might get resolved if you get your mother and wife in the same room and iron it out, with you being a neutral person who does not take sides; this is the best option.

If this isn’t possible, kindly visit a family counsellor who can step in and show your family a way to live amicably or give you a perspective on how healthy it might be to live separately.

At the end of the day, you have responsibilities towards your wife and child too!

All the best and a Happy 2022.

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Anu Krishna  |1054 Answers  |Ask -

Relationships Expert, Mind Coach - Answered on Apr 23, 2024

Asked by Anonymous - Apr 21, 2024Hindi

Kanchan Rai  |294 Answers  |Ask -

Relationships Expert, Mind Coach - Answered on Apr 30, 2024

Asked by Anonymous - Apr 30, 2024Hindi
Dear Madam, Iam a 45 year old woman. Ever since I was a kid I had went through lot of bullying by my rekatives for the way I look but my parents never supported me in any way instead found fault in ne for complaining but would always support my younger brother. Somewhere down the line I thought this was all I deserved and let oeople walk all over me without standing up for myself. Now that Iam a mother myself of a 15 year old kid with dyskexia, i have sacrificed my career fir his sake and still get bullied by my relatives dir being a useless house wife. I have started drawing boundaries around me to protect my mental sanity and allow only few people in it which invludes a small group of friends and my son and husband. I avoid making new friends. I have also stopped attending any social events that involves my relatives. Meanwhile I have started deeply resenting my parents who want ne to take care of them but openly favour my brother who lives abroad. I have taken care of them everytime they require neducal treatments yet my father openly says that he plans to give all his property to my brother who is never coming back. Its not about the money here but the apathy they have towards me that kills me from inside. I have tried to talk to them multiple times but each time my mother creates a scene and puts the enture blame on me. For once in my life i want my parents to love me unconditionally the way I do with my son. Am i wrong to expect that? This is causung lot of health issues in me. Please advise.
Ans: First and foremost, it's crucial to recognize that your feelings are valid. It's natural to want love and support from your parents, especially after all you've done for them. It's not wrong to expect unconditional love from your family; however, sometimes, unfortunately, families can be complex and dysfunctional, and our expectations may not always be met.

Drawing boundaries and prioritizing your mental health and well-being is a positive step. It's essential to protect yourself from toxic relationships and environments, even if it means distancing yourself from certain family members. Surrounding yourself with supportive friends and loved ones, like your son and husband, is vital for your emotional health.

Regarding your parents, it's clear that their behavior is hurtful and unjust. It's understandable that you would feel hurt and resentful toward them, given their favoritism towards your brother and lack of appreciation
for your sacrifices and care. However, it's also essential to recognize that you cannot control their actions or attitudes. You can only control how you respond to them.

While it's challenging, try to approach conversations with your parents from a place of empathy and understanding. Express your feelings calmly and assertively, focusing on how their actions make you feel rather than blaming them. It's possible that they may not even realize the extent of the hurt they're causing you. However, it's also essential to set realistic expectations. If your parents continue to be unsupportive or dismissive, it may be necessary to limit your interactions with them for the sake of your own well-being.

Remember to prioritize self-care and seek support from a therapist or counselor if you're struggling with your mental health. It's okay to seek professional help to navigate through these difficult emotions and experiences. You deserve love, respect, and validation, and it's essential to surround yourself with people who uplift and support you.

Lastly, continue to cherish the love and bond you have with your son and husband. They are your pillars of support, and together, you can navigate through these challenges. You're stronger than you realize, and you have the power to create a fulfilling and loving life for yourself, regardless of the negativity from others.

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Kanchan Rai  |294 Answers  |Ask -

Relationships Expert, Mind Coach - Answered on Jun 21, 2024

Asked by Anonymous - Jun 11, 2024Hindi
Hi madam, I am 58 yrs old and married since 30+ yrs. Have 2 daughters. Elder one is married in 2021 and happy with her life, younger one is working in MNC. Since my marriage i didn't came to know what the relationship to be there between husband and wife as my wife is very reluctant and she loves only money. since my marriage she always fight with me for silly issues and in childhood of my children's she often beat them with whatever she got in hand. always she said that her husband and children's are useless and always give very good reasons and remarks to others in society or family. Now many times i thought of getting away from her either by doing suicide or run away from my home or divorce her. but i just wanted to leave her alone so that she can think of our presence when we are not available to her. my younger daughter is finally decided to leave the home and be alone in another rented flat or on PG due to her mother behavior. please advice if i opt for divorce and run away from home. i can't speak to any one regarding my situation and need immediate help.
Ans: It's clear that you've endured a lot over the years, and it's understandable that you're feeling overwhelmed and considering drastic measures like divorce or leaving home. Let's explore your situation with a compassionate and practical perspective.

Firstly, it's important to acknowledge your feelings. You've been dealing with a challenging relationship for a long time, and it's natural to feel the weight of it all. Your desire to escape the pain, whether through divorce or even more extreme thoughts, signals just how tough things have been. Remember, these feelings are valid, but it's crucial to find a way forward that prioritizes your well-being and safety.

Considering a divorce is a significant step, especially after being married for over 30 years. It could potentially lead to a new beginning where you and your wife might find individual peace and happiness. Before making this decision, it might be helpful to reflect on a few things:

Sometimes, the prospect of a new start can bring clarity. Have you thought about what life might look like without your current relationship's stress and conflict? Envisioning this can help you understand your true desires.

Your daughters' well-being is a significant concern. Your younger daughter's decision to move out reflects how the family dynamics are affecting her. Would a change, like a separation or divorce, potentially bring more stability and peace for everyone involved?

If it's possible, consider having a heart-to-heart conversation with your wife. Sharing your feelings and how her actions have impacted you and your family might open a door to understanding or change. It’s a difficult conversation but can sometimes lead to unexpected resolutions.

Consulting a therapist or counselor can be invaluable. They can provide you with a safe space to express your feelings and offer guidance on managing your situation. A professional can also help you and your wife if there's any possibility of working through your issues together.

If divorce seems like the best option, seeking legal advice is crucial. Understanding your rights and the practical aspects of separation can help you make an informed decision.

Remember, you don’t have to go through this alone. Lean on trusted friends, family, or support groups for emotional backing. Your happiness and mental health are incredibly important, and finding a path that leads you to peace is worth the effort. Whatever you decide, take small, thoughtful steps towards creating a better situation for yourself and your family.

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