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Agony Aunt helps you to deal with relationship problems

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Engulfed in negative thoughts

My friend of 15 years, shared the news of her undergoing treatment for breast cancer when I met her few days ago. In the entire period of our friendship I have seen her to be extremely health conscious and eating well. She doesn’t even have any vices. When she broke this news to me I was taken aback. I am now constantly worrying about my health and going to various doctors to get myself tested. My family is getting worried and so am I as I realise this not a healthy behaviour. What can I do to help myself as I want to stop this illogical behaviour? 

Ans: The anxiety you have mentioned is regarding health preoccupation and being concerned that if someone with a healthy lifestyle could get so severely ill then what could happen to those who are not that cautious. The insight that you have in this situation is something that could help in coming out of this illogical thinking pattern. Since there are frequent visits to doctors and there is still no reassurance, then maybe visiting a psychologist for therapy (cognitive behavioural therapy) could help in the process. The negative thinking is causing such illogical behaviour which needs to be replaced with an alternate thought pattern which is rational. therapy can definitely help you work on the thought process.


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Hoping for new start

I am a 29-year-old woman, married for 4 years and a mother of a 2-year-old baby. I am quite content with my home life as things are great between my husband and raising our child is also an exceptional experience. I have a lot of free time on my hand as me and my husband share our responsibilities. I was wondering if I could use this extra time for something productive like starting a small business of baked goods as I am a trained baker. I am hesitating for some reason, mainly my son as I don’t want to neglect my responsibilities towards him. I really want to start working as well. how do I overcome this confusion?

Ans: Being a mother and handling a child’s responsibility is a full-time work in itself but it is also essential to maintain your own individuality in the process. You have a supportive husband and this could be also a way in which you could realize your dreams of doing something productive with your skills. I understand the hesitation of not attending to your child whenever he needs you as you would be focusing on work as well, but it won’t be termed as neglect if you are managing both simultaneously. You could start on trial basis by allotting few hours maybe 3 times a week to baking when your husband is around to take care of the baby. Once you start settling into the dual role, things would become easier to handle as well.

Not ready for marriage

I am 25-year-old girl, working at a very good organisation and doing well for myself. My parents after attending a wedding of a family friend’s son (who is my age) are kind of hinting towards my marriage. I am currently not dating anyone so don’t really have a reason to just brush this off. They would bring up this topic way too often than not. I am really not sure how to tell them I do not wish to get married anytime soon as my work might take me abroad in a year’s time and I would be able to either take it or leave it because I wanted to and not because I have a relationship to work out and that’s why have to leave it. How do I get across this to them?

Ans: The logic you have mentioned about not wanting to get married just because others your age are, has to be conveyed to your parents in a way that doesn’t reflect want to prove them wrong and yourself right. The aim has to be that of conveying understanding so that they can back your decisions in life willingly and not because they have no choice. If you do not like them discussing about marriage, convey that dislike as well as your plan regarding marriage i.e. at least some picture of where does marriage stand in your priority list so that they can mentally prepare themselves and not harrow you with subtle talks in order to persuade you to get married soon.

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Ignoring partner

I have been dating my girlfriend for past 3 years. We met in college and started as friends but soon realised that I like her and asked her out. Luckily, she liked me back as well and we are together till date. However, I feel that she is slowly starting to stay a little aloof and act weird in the relationship. This has been happening since our graduation day has been announced and final exams are approaching closer. I think she is worried as to what will happen once college is done as we haven’t discussed what will happen to us. I guess for me it was understood that we are going to continue the relationship post college as well. Her changed behaviour is starting to worry me. Should I go talk to her?

Ans: The reason you have mentioned about the graduation and final exams and then the uncertainty about the relationship might be a cause for your girlfriend’s worry and changed behaviour. Discussing the worry towards her could be a good start to having a serious talk about the possible future of this relationship. Often, we assume that the other person will understand things even if you don’t say it out aloud. It may not always happen. Thus, when you are speculating and thinking on behalf of not only yourself but your girlfriend as well, it becomes important to involve her as well so as to get answers you are seeking.