Advice columnist Fiona Caine offers her perspective on family dramas, emotional issues and dysfunctional relationships
I’M DESPERATE FOR A BABY
Q My boyfriend and I have been trying for a baby for the last four months but so far without any luck.
I’m beginning to worry that maybe something is wrong and I’m infertile. That would be really terrible because we both want children even though we don’t have our own home yet and he’s not got a job. I am 18 and he’s 19 – is that too young to ask a doctor for a check up?
A Four months isn’t very long to have been trying for a baby, but I have to say that perhaps it’s good luck you haven’t fallen pregnant yet.
It’s all very well wanting a baby but without a proper home and income it’s going to be a real struggle. Add to that the fact that you are both still young – money aside, aren’t there things you want to do, places you want to go or dreams you want to work towards? Why not consider putting your plans for a family on hold and look for ways to let yourself and your relationship grow. There are all kinds of reasons why you might not have fallen pregnant and most doctors would tell you to keep trying for a time longer yet.
WHY IS MY NEW HUSBAND SO COLD?
Q When we married two years ago my husband was loving, supportive and caring. Now, two years later, he’s changed and only cuddles me if he wants sex.
How can things have changed so much in only two years? I can’t remember the last time he said spontaneously that he loved me without first being asked. I’ve tried talking to him but he doesn’t seem to understand how rejected this makes me feel. My first husband was cold and undemonstrative and now it looks like this marriage is going the same way. Is it something I’m doing wrong?
A I can’t say if there is something you are doing wrong but we all tend to repeat the same mistakes.
Was your first husband loving and caring and did he then change? If that’s the case, maybe you are picking the same kind of men. That doesn’t mean things can’t be changed though. It may be that your husband’s unaware of his behaviour and needs it spelt out to him more clearly. He needs to understand that, after your past experience you need more reassurance. Talking to a Relate counsellor (www.relate.org.uk) before your marriage deteriorates any further would be a good idea too.
MY ABUSIVE EX WON’T LEAVE ME ALONE
Q I left my violent, hard-drinking husband 18 months ago after life with him became intolerable.
My daughter and I spent time in refuge and were rehoused four months ago. Somehow though, my husband has tracked us down and is making life intolerable. When he’s been drinking he comes round here and bangs on the door and windows frightening me and my daughter. When I go out I often spot him following me. I’ve asked my solicitor to speed up the divorce, but she doesn’t seem to be doing much.
I’m so frightened and feel like a prisoner, afraid to go out of my home.
A Please speak to your solicitor again; not about the divorce but about a restraining order.
You are in a terrifying situation and this must not be allowed to continue. You don’t say whether you’ve contacted the police when he harasses you but I suggest you call 999 every time he threatens you. Make sure the police know about your past history as they may be able to help you in other ways too.