Focus On: Relationship Issues and Family Issues

Family and personal relationship issues can develop over time and impact all areas of your life.

All relationships and families face challenges at times. From marriage difficulties and issues with children to caring for aging parents, relationships throughout our lives can be difficult to manage and require work to maintain. When these issues are not addressed, this can lead to conflicts that threaten the stability of these relationships.

Signs of relationship issues and family issues

  • There are several signs of potential problems in a family or personal relationship, including:
  • Resentment and contempt
  • Frequent arguments and disagreements
  • Yelling and other angry outbursts
  • Lack of communication
  • Avoiding contact with the partner or family member
  • Physical conflict

Causes of relationship issues and family issues

A number of different triggers can lead to relationship issues and family issues, including:

  • Difference in opinions, beliefs, values or expectations
  • Personality clashes
  • Large changes, such as a new baby
  • Chronic illness
  • Financial issues
  • Stress
  • Lack of trust, respect and emotional support
  • The onset of mental health issues such as depression or anxiety
  • Addiction to alcohol, drugs or gambling

The impact of relationship issues and family issues

When there are problems in a family or personal relationship that remain unresolved, it can lead to several negative effects, including:

  • Negative emotions, including anger and sadness
  • Exhaustion
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Health issues
  • Changes in diet
  • Difficulties in other relationships, such as friends
  • Abusing alcohol or drugs as a method of coping

Solving relationship issues and family issues

If family or relationship issues are impacting your life, there are several steps you can take:

  • Communicate: Keeping family and relationship issues buried or trying to avoid talking about them only makes things worse. Although it can be uncomfortable, the first step to solving relationship issues and family issues is to communicate clearly about your needs and concerns.
  • Don’t try to change each other: Accept the fact that your loved one may be different from you in many ways, and you may not always agree with each other. Try to view things from your loved one’s point of view, and for each situation that is causing an issue, find the compromise that works for everybody.
  • Make a plan: For some large issues it can help to examine your situation and make a plan to solve the problem. For example, if you are facing financial difficulties, make a new budget.
  • Learn more: If you are having problems in a specific area, such as communicating effectively, managing a large change or dealing with your stress, consider taking a workshop to develop this skill. Henry Ford Enhance offers many free workshops.
  • Get support: You may also benefit by talking to a trained ENHANCE counselor.
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