Parenting through Rise-filtered glasses
As a new parent, you might find yourself cut off from some of your usual social outlets, stuck at home for long stretches of time with only the baby for company. At this time, family and friends can be more important than ever, providing support and advice to boost your confidence and help get you through the tougher days. If your friends and family live far away, or if you don’t have face-to-face access, online social media can help you and your partner feel more connected to the outside world. Emotional support and positive feedback from other parents can also be invaluable as you figure things out [1] [2]. Social media can give you access to this, but it also helps you stay in touch with old friends who keep you connected to the parts of your life outside your parenting role [3]. Beating loneliness with online social interaction Your baby is always going to be your first priority, but these other social connections are important. As humans, we need to have meaningful relationships with each other – when we disconnect socially it can affect our health, making us more stressed and more likely to get sick, and affecting our sleep and concentration [3]. Social media can help you feel less isolated but it’s important to pay attention to the way you use it. Parents who actively engage with friends on social media tend to feel less stressed and more positive about their role as parents [2] but people who just spend more time on social media without engaging tend to feel more isolated, not less [3]. The difference here is between use and interaction. We’ve all spent time staring into our phones, refreshing our social media feeds in the hope that something new will come up. But this isn’t going to help you feel more connected when you’re knee-deep in baby wipes waiting for your partner to come home. You’ve got to reach out and engage with people if you want to experience the positive effects of social media. Turning off the filters It’s also important to keep some perspective on what you see through the lens of social media. We all know that Facebook life isn’t real life, and that nobody ever looks as good as they do on Instagram, but it’s easy to fall into the trap of seeing things through Rise-filtered glasses and believing everybody on social media is having a better time than you.  If social media is your only window into your friends’ lives, you might start thinking they are living happier, more connected lives than you [3]. Try to remember that you’re only seeing an edited glimpse of what your friends want the rest of the world to see. When your social networks start making you feel worse instead of better, take a step back and have a think about who you could reach out to for a chat. It’s the social aspect of social networks that’s valuable, so the next time you find yourself mindlessly scrolling through posts, send a message instead – ask for advice, vent your feelings, or just tell someone a funny story about your day. The empathy, advice and humour that you come across online can give you a life-affirming confidence boost and make you feel better about how you’re getting on as a parent [4]. You might even want to start by making a post here on Click.   References [1] Madge C., O’Connor H. (2006). Parenting gone wired: Empowerment of new mothers on the Internet? Social and Cultural Geography, 7, 199–220.[2] Bartholomew, M. K., Schoppe‐Sullivan, S. J., Glassman, M., Kamp Dush, C. M., & Sullivan, J. M. (2012). New parents' Facebook use at the transition to parenthood. Family relations, 61(3), 455-469.[3] Primack, B.A. et al (2017) Social Media Use and Perceived Social Isolation Among Young Adults in the U.S. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 53(1), 1-8.[4] Fletcher, R., & St. George, J. (2011). Heading into fatherhood—nervously: Support for fathering from online dads. Qualitative Health Research, 21(8), 1101-1114.
Article | social media, parenting
0 6 min read
“His baby mama lives with his mom”
This post was published by a Click user. Please feel free to respond in the comments below. We sometimes edit posts to ensure Click is a safe, respectful place to share stories and questions. _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________   Short Version: His baby mama lives with his mom, he lives elsewhere. I would have felt better about this situation had I not realized that he is still taking very careful steps not to impose on her feelings. They have not been together for 2 years, he is not on child support, and they have been friends since high school for 8 years or so. Him and I have a serious relationship, open communication, his mom knows about me and knows that he plans to be with me in the future. Problems arose when he went to his mother's house to see his son, and I noticed he was only calling me once he left the house to run errands. The very night I confronted him about the baby mama not knowing of me (via text), is the same night she went into his room, went through his text messages while his phone was on the charger and he was working (he's a social media influencer). That's how she found out about me. My question is how should I confront him about this situation cause it's making me uncomfortable. He won't put his foot down with her. Hes being overly cautious of her feelings and she has control of him because of this, and I don't like this. He says child support and custody is the furthest thing from her mind so that's why hes trying not to set her off. But all I see is excuses. If she walks over your feelings, is inconsiderate of your time, and talks down to you, it's because you haven't put your foot down
Ask the community | someone else, parenting together
Coping with relationship stress
When stress interrupts your life, it can affect everything. It can make you more anxious and irritable, affecting your attitude, your energy levels, and the way you communicate. The person most likely to take the brunt of it is your partner, especially if your time and energy are being taken up dealing with whatever is causing your stress [1]. Types of stress To help you deal with stress in your relationship, it can be useful to know whether it’s internal or external stress. Internal stress. This is stress that comes from the relationship itself – like when you and your partner have clashing habits, or different ideas about where you want things to go [2]. External stress. This is stress that comes from outside your relationship – things like work and study, finances, family dramas, or just wondering how to fit everything in [2]. External stress can still affect your relationship even when it’s not directly connected [2]. It can affect your communication skills and may make it harder for you to work together to deal with internal stress. Tackling external stress can therefore help you feel happier about your relationship [3] and set you up to work better together as a couple. Coping with stress together External stress might sound like something you have to cope with alone, but it doesn’t have to be. When you’re in a relationship, you share more with your partner than you might be aware of, including the way you manage stress [4]. We know all the old platitudes – a problem shared is a friend in need (or something like that) – but there’s actually evidence to suggest that couples go through a process known as shared coping [4]. Picture this: You get stressed. Your partner picks up on your stress and tries to help. You notice that you are being supported. If it works, you start to feel better. Coping with stress becomes a shared process where you both put energy into making sure each other are OK. As well as helping you both feel better in general, working through stress as a couple can strengthen feelings of closeness and trust in your relationship [4]. If you’re not convinced, here’s something you can try. Think back to a time when your partner successfully helped you through a stressful experience: What was causing the stress? How was the stress affecting you? What practical help did your partner offer? What emotional support did your partner offer? How was the stressful situation resolved? What was it about your partner’s support that helped you feel better? You might also want to think about times when you’ve been able to support your partner and how this has felt. Reflecting on what has worked in the past can remind you that you are capable of overcoming stress, even if it’s hard to see a way forward at the time. You can use this to help figure out what to do when future bumps or stresses come along. How stress can improve your relationship Relationships are at their most vulnerable during stressful life events like losing a job or the death of a parent; and big changes like moving in together or having a baby. During these times, it’s more common for stress to spill over into your relationship [5]. The good news is that you can develop your coping skills over time and get better at handling stress. Couples who handle smaller stresses at the beginning of their relationships are more likely to cope better when the bigger things come up [5]. When you deal with stress, no matter how small, you’re building your resilience and learning positive relationship skills. Over time, you’ll become more confident about using these skills to conquer whatever life throws at you [5]. You may not be immune to stress, but you’ll be more likely to have a sturdy relationship in which to sail through the storms.   References [1] Randall, Ashley K, and Guy Bodenmann. 2017. ‘Stress and Its Associations with Relationship Satisfaction’. Current Opinion in Psychology, Relationships and stress, 13 (February): 96–106. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.copsyc.2016.05.010. [2] Randall, Ashley K., and Guy Bodenmann. 2009. ‘The Role of Stress on Close Relationships and Marital Satisfaction’. Clinical Psychology Review 29 (2): 105–15. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cpr.2008.10.004. [3] Ledermann, Thomas, Guy Bodenmann, Myriam Rudaz, and Thomas N. Bradbury. 2010. ‘Stress, Communication, and Marital Quality in Couples’. Family Relations 59 (2): 195–206. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1741-3729.2010.00595.x. [4] Donato, Silvia, Miriam Parise, Raffaella Iafrate, Anna Bertoni, Catrin Finkenauer, and Guy Bodenmann. 2015. ‘Dyadic Coping Responses and Partners’ Perceptions for Couple Satisfaction: An Actor–partner Interdependence Analysis’. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships 32 (5): 580–600. https://doi.org/10.1177/0265407514541071. [5] Neff, L.A., Broady, E.F. (2011). Stress resilience in early marriage: Can practice make perfect? Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, DOI: 10.1037/a0023809
Article | stress, communication
0 4 min read
“Lack of intimacy”
This post was published by a Click user. Please feel free to respond in the comments below. We sometimes edit posts to ensure Click is a safe, respectful place to share stories and questions. _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________   I have been with my husband for 18 years. Our sex life wasn't great but it was enough at the time. After being rejected by him when I tried to initiate sex I stopped trying. When we decided to have our daughter we had sex only a handful of times. After she was born it stopped, that was 10 years ago. Last year I met a guy at work, I felt great and it boosted my confidence as my marriage was a sham. I did have sex with the guy as I wanted to know if I still had a desire for sex, which I did. After this happened I went to councilling as I was so confused, she gave me the strength to confront my husband and ask him why he didn't want to have sex with me. When I talked to my husband about it he said it was my moods that turned him off wanting to have sex with me. I explained my moods were the result of him not showing me any affection which has led to a vicious circle. We both agreed to try which we did for a few months. We did have sex however he struggled to maintain an erection and could not ejaculate. This upset me as I felt I wasn't enough for him I told him this and he said I was. After this I stopped initiating sex as I wanted to see if my husband would try, that was 6 months ago and he hasn't tried. I am now at the stage I don't know what to do as if I talk to him again he will agree to try but will then do nothing. Having sex with the guy at work made me realise that I need to have a sex life but I'm not sure my husband does!
Ask the community | intimacy, sex, sexless, someone else
“He cheated, asked me to forgive, no sex since”
This post was published by a Click user. Please feel free to respond in the comments below. We sometimes edit posts to ensure Click is a safe, respectful place to share stories and questions. _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________   So my title is the problem in short, one year ago my boyfriend, since 7 years, had an affair for 5 months with a girl , much younger than him, I found out because I got suspicious because suddenly he always was too tired to have sex with me, even just once a month was not happening, while we were trying to conceive... so then one day my intuition said; check his bag, and I found a long love letter, from a her to him, talking about love, the last phrases were saying that; " there is nothing wrong with telling someone you love them, but that sometimes people are too shy to tell them like wise " ... I confronted him with the letter and then he did admit that he was having an affair and he said he had feelings for this girl, but never told her he loved her and that what was written in the letter was all a "citation" from a book and that because she is so much younger then him, he was never thinking of leaving me for her. He said that it had happened because he was very stressed, under a lot of pressure, felt not understood by me and was not happy with our sex life, which for me was quite a surprise because I had asked him for months, what was going on, why he didn't feel like having sex anymore and he always replied that he was under a lot of stress at work and just very tired ... He asked me to forgive him, he didn't want to break up and he did want to build a family with me, so I stayed, I told myself that I would give it some months to understand how I felt and what to do, I am 38 years old ( he is 45 ) and we were looking for a bigger house to buy and trying to make a baby, it was a serious relationship that I didn't want to give up, so now we are almost 1 year further, a very difficult year for me, he is a doctor and works 12 hours a day , this last year he has worked 14 hours a day, included Sundays, so instead of working on our private life, he gave all his energy and more time to his work.. He has not taken any initiative to pick up our sex life, he said that while having his affair, he understood that he was missing things, that what he needs in our relationship, is me taking initiatives to have sex, though when he comes home he always says he is too tired to talk , just wants to eat and sleep, when I only put a hand on his lab, he pulls away or finds a reason to stand up and go to his phone or toilet or needs to check his agenda ... , so I tried to be understanding that he is tired and stressed and not putting more pressure on him, but then he says I don't take initiatives ... and after learning about the affair, I also think , that it is him that should show me that he wants me .. To make the story complete, a while before finding out about his affair, I also found viagra pills in his wallet, ( which started my suspicion ), I confronted him with it and he said; that because he was so tired and stressed out, he just felt more secure with having them with him, just incase ... Now, after the affair, he says that because I've found out about the viagra, he just doesn't feel comfortable with me, knowing that he might have taken viagra to have sex, that me knowing this, takes away his desire to have sex, because I might question if he really desires me or if it's the viagra talking.. I have made some harsh comments about the viagra, I felt hurt and very insecure about it, he was only willing to having sex with me once or twice a month ( when I was ovulating, as we were trying to conceive ), and he needed viagra to make that happen, it made me think he didn't find me attractive enough, I made it all about me, instead of trying to understand him better .. So now we are not having any sex since a year, we are not looking for a house anymore, all the serious future projects are off the table, he is working more then he ever did, we are kind of ok as long as we don't talk about all the serious things, but at least twice a month ( while I'm ovulating or before my period ) I really need to talk about it and his way of dealing with it is avoiding it and when I bring it up, he says I'm not understanding his needs and issues, that he does desires to have a family, that he is not seeing that girl anymore but that he feels blocked ... Anyone who went through something similar, any advice about what to do?
User article | sexless, confidence, cheating
“My wife and her stepson”
This post was published by a Click user. Please feel free to respond in the comments below. We sometimes edit posts to ensure Click is a safe, respectful place to share stories and questions. _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________   My wife of 5 years “hates” my son. Hate probably isn't the accurate description, but she is extremely upset by him. She insists he hates her and the reason their relationship is so bad is because he secretly despises her and wishes she wasn't with me. None of that is true. Accept after years of torment and emotional abuse, he now understandably wishes she wasn't around. I am certain thats because she is pretty much awful to him always. By awful, I mean she doesn't like to see him. She is constantly upset if she sees him on his phone, or watching TV. This is regardless of how long he has been doing either. She unilaterally controls his bedtime, tv, and phone. She won't touch his laundry, and gets angry if he leaves it in the washer or dryer. I don't really have a say in parental discipline. I did get his bedtime moved from 9 to 9:30 which I think is too early for a 15 year old. If he stays up past bedtime even for a few minutes she gets angry and just directs him to "Go to Bed!" Often times she'll send him to bed early because she say's it takes too long for him to get into bed. My son does not protest anything, he internalizes a lot of things when he doesn't think something is fair, that does come out in his body language, which drives my wife crazy. We have three children together. My son is 10 years older than our oldest. I have full, sole, custody of him. His bio mom has abandoned him. My wife wasn't expecting to have him with his since the very beginning of our marriage. I was very nieve and thought because my son was awesome, she wouldn't have a problem with him. He is a very good kid. Of course I'm biased, but he gets decent grades, he is never sick, his teachers give him high praises for his demeanor in class, his coaches go out of their way to tell me how great he is to have on the team. He's always just wanted to be good, being in trouble devestates him. My wife treats close family with contempt. That includes me, my son, her mother, brother, and sister. She gets upset if I don't do things exactly how she wants. She often changes her mind about how she wants things, yet she'll be equally mad if you don't do it her way. While being upset with my son for being on his phone, she's constantly on her phone all day off and on. Chatting with her family, friends etc. Its really sad that I let this go on for so long. I just couldn't understand how she could feel that way about my son. But I'm starting to realize how impossible it would be for a young woman to go from being single to married with a 10 year old. I don't know why but I didn't see how difficult that was at the time. If we had it to do over again, we both agree we should have ended the marriage immediately. I'm at the point now where I am looking at divorce, but I really want to know if there are any cases where something like this was so severe but turned around with therapy, counseling, personal developement, and support. I'm willing to do whatever it takes, and she agreed she needed to go to counseling. She admits that she doesn't know why she gets so angry when she sees something like his plate left in the sink. She knows she wouldn't be like that with our children. But she says it's like a "extremely heavy bag is put on her" and she gets very angry. I have pretty severe depression that I am currently being treated by both medicine and therapy. (Looking into finding a new therapist) I've always had depression, but I do know that she is a major trigger to my depression. When she is angry with my son which is everyday, and when she's angry with me, which sporadic good week bad week kind of thing. I try very hard not to show my son that she is completly in the wrong. But its very difficult and sometimes I have to because he'll be in tears because she just hurt him. She responds with his tears with more anger and saying he's making it up. I'm not unbiased, but I would say its dillusional. I also want to point out, as this is a very one sided comment, I am not exactly the best husband and father. I don't have a high paying stable job, I own my own business. I am occupied by that business nearly all the time. I am always available but I don't volunteer my availability because I have an endless amount of work to do with my business.
Ask the community | cheating, trust, sex