Is your relationship causing you stress?
Are you feeling lonely, helpless, indecisive?
You are not alone!
As part of an initiative to help Rediff readers, mind/life coach, NLP trainer and mental health guru Anu Krishna wants you to talk about your problems.
Every week, Anu will answer your queries, address your concerns and offer expert advice on how you can take control of your life.
- Ask ANU: ‘I feel suicidal. What can I do?’
- ASK ANU: How do I deal with loss of a loved one?
- Are couples fighting more in the lockdown?
- ASK ANU: Do couples have less sex after marriage?
Dear readers, if you have a question for Anu, please e-mail it to [email protected] (Subject: Ask ANU) for her advice.
Meanwhile, here’s the unedited excerpt from Anu’s latest offline session with readers:
A: Dear Anu It’s been 3 years since I had my break up with my girlfriend.
We parted our ways on good terms but till date I miss her. Every time I feel like I should text her or call her but I don’t I just divert myself.
From past three weeks this thing is increasing I don’t know what to do should I contact her or not.
And I can’t discuss this thing with anyone I never told my friends about this relationship and I don’t want to.
Please help me out ma’am tell me what should I do .
ANU: Dear Anonymous, you can do one of two things. Either call her/text her and know what she feels about your relationship and whether she considers it as one.
If she does, see how both of you can rebuild it.
If she has moved on, then it’s obvious to move on as well. Easier said than done, I know.
But if you weigh what you lose by being in a zone of misery and anxiety versus what you can do and be when you move on, I guess it’s obvious what you must choose for yourself.
Start with initially distracting yourself from the phone into things that matter.
Do simple things; any repair in the house that you have put off or any course that you have been procrastinating about.
This is the time to start deeply focusing into something that will give you a sense of achievement that will enable you to have a better feeling from within.
Slowly, start to increase the level of difficulty of these tasks and soon, though you might still remember her, it will not be through pain or anguish but more a good memory.
Start now and always make sure you are surrounded by friends who pull you when you feel that ‘down’ moment.
Do remember, there was a reason why the two of you parted.
Honour and respect that reason and move on if that’s what is necessary for your peace of mind.
My best wishes to you!
HS: I don’t know how to start but things are not good in my life.
I lost my father 3 months back which still does not go out of my head.
I met a girl recently and developed some sort of feelings for her but she is not at all interested in me which made me more sad as I feel as I am just not good enough.
Due to my professional work I am not living with my family and their tensions extra.
I have zero friends who talk regularly to me or ask about me.
I have a thin body so people body shame me and it decreases my morale and confidence.
Profession is also not going as good I thought due to relationship issues with my manager.
Everything is making me more sad and lonely.
Please give me something to cheer. Don’t want to live life like this.. I am writing this with a heavy heart.
ANU: Dear HS, I am truly sorry for your loss; the passing away of a loved one is never easy on anyone.
Now let’s focus on what you might be bothered by. See, if you are going to depend on the external environment to increase your confidence or self-esteem, then you are setting yourself up for a rude disappointment.
Your state of mind is your choice which is the one that dictates how you perceive the environment around you.
If you wake every morning feeling sorry for yourself, do you think you are going to perform well at work?
Shying away from a social life just because you are body shamed pushes you back into an unfavorable state of mind where you shut away even a few ‘good’ people.
Why deprive yourself of the little joys just because some people measure you by how you look?
What do you get by giving into that drama that these people have created?
More agony, I presume! And then the loop goes on and on…
Do check a few inspiring videos on how people have overcome body shaming and take a leaf out of it and start living for who you are; people start respecting you when you respect yourself first.
Well, romantic feelings sometimes may not be reciprocated; but you feel sad because you already are in a self-pity mode; what if your mind space was stronger?
A rejection from a girl, would have still been fine and would have been easy to move on.
Sorry, I need to be honest and show you the mirror, rather than just cheer you up. Get up, stand tall, show up. Show Up, no matter what!
Respect yourself for who you are…you are your best Ally…Now, I want you to dust yourself off of all the feelings that are not useful and Show Up and Take Charge…watch how things change…
Best wishes and simply Show Up…You can do this…
RG:I have been in a relationship for 12 years when I married the man I love.
It is now 6 years of marriage and we have a kid. When I was pregnant my husband was in a relationship with another woman.
When my kid was 2.5 years old I came know about the relationship and I am destroyed.
My husband asked me not to leave him and since I didn’t get any support from my family I stayed. Now I am still not able to overcome the situation.
I know he doesn’t love me though he says he does.
I don’t know why I am with him, he is trying to maintain our relation but there is nothing like before.
I don’t feel the same way. I even don’t know whether I still love him or not.
ANU: Dear RG, I am going to assume that you want the marriage to work and my suggestions below are based on this assumption.
It’s time to get an independent person involved who will help in giving an impersonal view. This could be an elder member of the family or a Marriage Therapist.
What this person will help with is reevaluate your marriage, put things into perspective, clarify all your doubts.
Obviously, you have your doubts on whether he loves you or not after being cheated upon! But no amount of asking is going to convince you…that’s why it’s imperative for both of you involve a person who can guide you through this process of rebuilding your marriage in trust and love.
In the meantime, what I might suggest for you is: Remind yourself everyday as to why you married him and what he has brought forth to your life.
This helps you be in a sane space on a daily basis which also help you care for the toddler who needs a lot of care and love as well.
Spend time with friends that don’t just gossip and bad-mouth but can genuinely nourish you; you need this nourishment now.
Pick up a hobby and indulge in it; it helps not just distract you but also give you a ‘feel-good’ emotion and makes you have little moments of joy.
Of course, after you visit the expert, the choice of continuing in the marriage or not, rests with the two of you…choose wisely.
All the best!
GN: My name is Gatima, I’m 36 years old and a housewife.
I’m married from past 10 years and it was a love marriage.
I was bought up in metro cities like Delhi and Mumbai. I married to a guy from Goa and a shipy (merchant navy).
I was working when I got married but I left immediately because I wanted to sail with my husband, initial years were good. I have one boy who is 5 now .
We used to fight all d time but initially we used to understand each other and patch up fast , but from last one year our fights increased so much and we stop talking for even months.
My husband has lots of complaints from me and always blames me for every fight.
I’m feeling so guilty. I always curse myself and ask God why he made me so bad person.
Whenever we fight, all other family members cut off communication with me.
Although I am surrounded by so many I’m alone.
I cry most of time but now my eyes have dried and there are no tears.
I hate myself and my life. I cannot face the mirror for days bcoz I hate myself.
I am living for my 5 year old son. But I’m very depressed and have PCOD .
I don’t get sleep plus I get migraine attacks.
ANU: Dear GN, The past year has been different for different people; marriages have been rebuilt, new marriages have taken place, divorces have happened…relationships have gone through a huge transitions, in short.
Of course, not to undermine what you are experiencing right now!
Conflicts, arguments, debates are common in a marriage…but they can be worked upon as long as both of you want the same thing and want to stick around in the marriage.
What according to you has changed now when you say that things used to easily resolve earlier and now that doesn’t happen? What has caused this?
When you say, he complains and blames you, how does he do that? Does he actually say it aloud or are you interpreting it?
These questions get you closer to the truth of the matter at hand.
It takes two people to create a conflict, of course the phase of life or whatever the phase he is in, maybe he finds it convenient to blame you.
So why do play the role of the victim when you are not actually one?
And Yes, he may not be justified in what he is doing and throwing it all on you. But if simply being in this pool of misery has achieved anything, it has made you a victim…
If you want to feel better or change something about this situation, wake up NOW…do something, do anything; support or no support from anyone!
A small change in the way you perceive things and act for yourself can change your physical well-being as well.
PCOS/Migraine can be an indirect result of the anxiety and stress that you are carrying inside you.
Start focusing on what you are eating and if you are exercising enough…these can help a great deal in keeping PCOS/Migraine under control.
What you think is what you become…so keep your son also in mind and get yourself out of this misery or find an expert who can help you. You want this for yourself and your son, don’t you?
My best wishes are with you!
KS:My name is ‘X’ and I belong to a middle class family.
Right now, I am 46 and my marriage was solemnised about 10 yrs back.
It was a totally arranged marriage would like to state here that I didn’t like the girl or her appearance right from the start.
I am a teacher by profession and my mother wanted her would be daughter- in law to have a similar background that is like that of a teacher.
Initially, I was hesitant to marry this girl selected by my parents, but then I consented to the marriage thinking that whatever my elders and my parents had thought about my future would be the correct decision related to my life.
Moreover, everybody had started to say that the girl would suit me. But right from the 1st day of marriage, I started resenting the relationship.
Nothing happened between us on the 1st night of marriage.
The girl didn’t have any specific faults, but somehow she didn’t appear to be attractive at all for me.
The colour of her skin was dark, maybe I wanted a fair skinned girl.
Finally, the situation came to such an extent that she, in collusion with her family, lodged a false case of domestic violence against us because they felt that the girl was unfairly neglected by me.
They also wanted to derive unfair financial gain at my parents and my cost.
The case continued for 7 years and ultimately we won it. And now, after many years, I have once again started to feel that I should marry even though I am of advanced age.
I want a partner who is attractive, beautiful and above all, who is so matured in her outlook that after marriage, we will not even care for any petty issues and not fight over silly matters.
I am also taking the help of Shaadi.com in this matter through all the attractive membership schemes launched by them.
Now, at this juncture, I really need your advice as to whether I should proceed forward and take this step at my age.
This is moreso because as a life partner, I want an elite kind of girl who is far above the kind of girl which we see in most common middle-class societies.
I do not want to disclose my name.
ANU: Dear KS, before you proceed on this journey of finding a life partner for yourself, it is time to rework your strong beliefs on appearance, skin colour etc.
What went wrong with your first marriage maybe anybody’s guess, but there’s no judging here!
Not that, you were coerced into it; you fully know you always had the option of saying you didn’t want to marry the girl.
Yet, you went ahead convincing yourself that your family knew what they were doing for you.
The unfair financial gain that they wanted might have been a direct result of the unfair treatment from you towards their daughter.
Did that occur to you?
You say you want a life partner who will not rake up petty issues and be matured as well, don’t you feel that is what she will expect from you as well?
Since I don’t have the details, it would be unfair of me to presume anymore on this.
It was to simply turn your head towards how your old-fashioned thinking might step into your next marriage as well?
How would you feel if on the first night in your next marriage, your wife comments on your physical appearance or your performance in bed?
Are you going to walk around with a high self-esteem even after that?
Let’s now lead you to a place that can make it a beautiful experience for you…
So much has changed and I truly wish that you look at your spouse for what she can add into your life instead of harping on what she doesn’t possess?
I mean, as humans the flaws that we walk around, if it were pointed to us on a daily basis, it would depress us to a point that we may end up feeling that we are not good enough.
What I would suggest after having worked with couples over years helping them rebuild their marriages is to change your way of thinking and embrace the next person for who she is once you know your initial check boxes have been ticked that might involve matching value systems.
This helps in rooting your marriage on a strong foundation; rain or storm, the two of you will be smiling and holding hands to walk the journey together.
Wishing you a beautiful life!
TT: Dear Anu, I would like to discuss about a problem in my married life with you.
Me and my husband had a love marriage 21 years ago.
Before our marriage also my husband had many relationships and affairs but since he was very true about everything and he promised to change things, we married.
Though, our family was a happy one and we have two grown up kids also, everything seems OK from outside. But actually, my husband has had many affairs after our marriage also.
He has never left his habit of impressing females around him, it may be his colleagues or some common friends etc.. and I always come across some or the other female in his life.
Some of the affairs have been so serious that they even went ahead and spent days and nights together.
Every time, I discover some affair, he admits his mistake and tells me to move on, but he never believes in correcting his mistakes and either continues with the affair or finds a new partner.
I have lost all trust in him but since I am not earning and have two grown up kids and also love him a lot, can’t think of separation.
I have tried confronting him though but he gets angry always and blames me for spoiling our family life and not moving on.
Also, would like to accept that he is very supportive in family matters, loves his family a lot, is very dedicated to his work and to his kids, he is very empathetic towards people, helps everyone but needs his own space too.
I am completely confused about what should I do.
I am unable to trust him for anything and we keep arguing over smallest things.
Hope you will reply to me. Thanks.
ANU: Dear TT, I can only imagine what you must be going through.
Since you want to continue in the marriage, that choice is something I presume that has emerged after a lot of thought and I respect it.
The way this marriage will work is communicate clearly to him that his philandering ways have to stop as it is affecting you and the marriage.
If this doesn’t work, he seriously needs help in dealing with this…sometimes people don’t realise that they are jeopardizing their marriages.
I am not defending him but simply stating that sometimes people get themselves into a trap of not so useful situations and quite don’t know how to get out of it.
Also, what he might gain from so many extra marital relationships is something that he needs to find in other ways rather than swaying outside of the marriage.
This requires him to work with an expert as he will most likely not yield to your requests like in the past. Mere talking will not be enough; he possibly needs intensive therapy.
This will help him reunite with his family that he loves so much and he can be around completely without having to seek pleasure outside eroding the foundation of marriage.
As he seems to get better, it’s time for you to live your life as well, right?
What is it that you haven’t done in years? What is it that you gave up after marriage or after having kids?
What excites you enough for you to step up for yourself and create your own happiness? Simply DO THAT.
This will help you get back on your feet; who knows you might discover something that actually may end up becoming a money generator as well!
I wish you the best!
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