Agony Aunt helps you to deal with relationship problems

Stressed out

I am undergoing a laser surgery for removing scars from an old injury. Each time I go there I see so many others there who are in worse situation than me. I really feel for them and after coming back home I get into this zone of feeling sorry and being sad. The treatment is also suffering due to my mood as the recovery is taking a while. The doctors are saying it is due to the stress I am taking. I don’t know how ‘not’ to stress as its affecting me so badly. 

Ans: Firstly, it is essential to check whether it is sympathy or empathy that you are experiencing towards the other patients. Once this is understood, you can channelize your feelings into doing something useful for them such as creating awareness, or holding some event where these patients could gather and interact. Each individual might have a story behind their scars and such a group set up where every other individual share it, creates a lot of difference in handling own life issues. This platform might also give an outlet to many individuals who do not express themselves due to fear of being judged. The stress can be diverted to it being a motivation to work towards the betterment of people who you feel strongly for.

Ms. Troublemaker

I am in a close-knit group of female friends. One girl from my group is very manipulative, moody and causes a lot of negativity occasionally in a few girls’ life. I am very conflicted between ignoring her or telling her off which might or might not be the right thing to do as it will hurt her and strain our friendship. How do I deal with this?  

Ans: In a group set up it is essential to have an independent equation with each member as it helps in overall group morale. This girl you mentioned, is causing a dilemma for you and a way to overcome this is to decide what is more important: you pretending to be her friend or telling her that you might not be able to share a close relationship with her as there are few things that you do not appreciate about her. The truth might widen the gap between you two but will at least allow both of you to co-exist.

Victim of overprotection 

I’m an 18-year-old guy studying Law from a reputed college in Mumbai. My family lives in Haryana and is very protective of me. They call me up at random hours to check up on me and contact my friends if I am not reachable due to this I have few friends left now. I can’t go out without worrying that they might get offended if I don’t answer their calls and call me back home. I am dreading to ask them for anything and try and act as normal as I can while talking to them. It is getting too suffocating for me here and its being seen in my results as well. I am not sure I will be able to handle it any longer. 

Ans: There needs to be an intervention with your parents on this topic of being overprotective by a professional (college professor/counselor) so as to bring it to their notice that their behaviour is indeed causing stress on to you. The professional can highlight the difference in your capacity and output thus emphasizing on the role of your parents. You could also try and initiate a conversation with them not in an accusatory way though. It is essential to be on same page for all of you if the relationship needs to be a pleasant one. speak to your friends as well and convey the home situation to them so that they don’t encounter something that they aren’t prepared for.

The ‘Ex’ factor

I got married last year and the honeymoon period was a bliss till it lasted. I got first reality check when my wife revealed that she is still in touch with two ex-boyfriends of her. She said she is simply friends with them and they have a mutual understanding. I didn’t dwell much as it wasn’t a cause of concern then. Recently I got another shock when she said she wants to go on a trip with her college friends and the group involved her exes. She is adamant that she wants to go and that I am acting as an insecure husband. I am not sure how to handle this as I am not comfortable with her behaviour. I am seeing this relationship failing and am unable to convince her otherwise.

Ans: The concern you are harbouring towards your wife’s behaviour is not seen as a concern. There is also hint of insecurity as she is going to spend time with her exes on the trip. The question here is the amount of trust you have in her and your relationship. The other question to answer is her being adamant about going on this trip: she might want to spend time with her friends and not necessarily think about her exes in the same capacity as earlier. It all boils down to your trust level with her and if that is shaken then the foundation of your relation itself is in jeopardy. Communicating about all these cracks in the relationship is essential as it will either make or break the equation between the two of you.

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