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Have your loved ones shown you the true meaning of the word "family" with their actions? Or, is there a rift in your family that has gone on too long? Share your stories and solutions.
Replied By: bdeborah82 on Jan 29, 2015, 3:46PM

Dear Dr. Phil,

I have a tremendous amount of respect for you and the great work you do for your guests. One area of concern is your misplaced faith in State Child Protective Services. They do not conduct complete investigations and they do a very poor job of protecting children. I have experienced this firsthand. One of my adult daughters is a heroin addict. her husband was deployed to Iraq for a year when my grandson was 8 months old. I discovered through a friend of hers that she was locking her baby son in his bedroom at night and going out partying for 10 to 12 hours at a time. I immediately reported this to AZ CPS. They told me that as long as she was not giving the baby drugs, they would not open a file! i went to her apartment and took my grandson and moved him in with me. She fought with me about it, but, I prevailed Even though I had no legal right to take him. I called the military and reported her. They also called CPS and again they did nothing! I kept my grandson until his father returned from Iraq. Fortunately my daughter didn't try to get him back. There are stories much worse than mine, where children have died after CPS did a cursory investigation and returned the children to the abusive homes.
Replied By: imkayleesmom on Jan 29, 2015, 3:04PM
I lost my mom 6 months ago. She was my best friend! I come from a very disfunctional background. Both parents were alcoholics and my mom was addicted to prescription drugs. I had been taking care of her since I was 12. I had seven half-brothers and sisters. Three sisters have passed. I have a long history of mental illness in my family. Currently I am suffering from depression, anxiety and fibromyalgia. I quit my job 4 1/2 years ago to stay home with my mom to take care of her and to get some relief from the anxiety at my job. Since my mom passed, my depression and anxiety have gotten progressively worse. I have a wonderful husband and two beautiful and successful girls. They are always there to support me. I'm lucky in that aspect.

Here's the problem, I am looking for advice regarding my relationship with my siblings who are left. One is a horrible alcoholic that I refuse to have a relationship with. He is my mother's son. He can also be abusive. The other brother from my dad lives on the West Coast and I live in the South. I believe he's also an alcoholic but, he is functional. I talk with him from time to time. He's too far away to have a close relationship with. He is 25 years older than me. The last two living sisters are my twin sisters who are my dads. We are 6 years apart. I am 47. We all grew up together except my oldest two siblings and my mom raised the twins from the age of two. My dad's first wife and my mom's first husband died the same year. Then they got married.

The twins have always treated me as an outsider but claim they love me. They have bullied me for years and even blamed me for my mom's behavior. The twins and my mom had a falling out about my dad and she through them out of the house in their senior year in high school. I'm trying to make this as short as possible without a lot of detail so, to make a long story short, they stopped calling her mom and cut their ties with her. My father was abusive to my mom. I'm not blaming my dad for all of their problems in the marriage but I was always afraid of him. My sisters put my dad on a pedestal and think he was the greatest man ever. I'm a realist, I know my mom and dad were both wrong. After many years in and out of rehab, a doctor diagnosed my mom as bipolar. With the right medication, my mom got much better and became the mom I always wanted! The twins never tried to reconcile with her.

I was was never fond of my dad because he never took responibility for his actions and he was never there for me other than money. My sisters constantly guilted me into spending time with him which was useless because he always made you feel like crap. Nothing was ever good enough for him. I did this for years even though I hated it whole time. They also demanded that I was there in the end to take care of my dad. I didn't want to but I always remembered honor thy mother, honor thy Father. I did what I needed to do.

During my mothers illness, the twins were all over my Facebook giving me support that was public for all to see but offered no other help other than by phone. The never made peace with my mom before she died and I have built resentment towards them. I reached out 3 times to them during my mom's illness for serious help and neither came. After the funeral, they came to my house to bring food and even showed up for the funeral. I think they did that to save face and it literally made me sick!

I've always felt like an outsider. They invited me to things as a family at Christmas and such but ignored me and my family when we showed up. They never included me otherwise. After my mothers death, I have been struggling with my depression and they were constantly interjecting themselves in my life. At Thanksgiving and Christmas they started texting me wanting to know if I was coming. I made an excuse of course then they asked one last time and I replied that the holidays were too emotional for me because my mom wasn't here. I told them about my depression and anxiety and that I couldn't come. I broke down and told my niece I couldn't do it any longer. She talked me into giving them one last opportunity to come and discuss exactly how I felt and they did not come. They wanted only us three to get together and have that conversation. I refused because we've been through this before and they gang up on me until I agree with them. I said no to their invitation because I refuse to be bullied any longer. Now they are trying to build a bond with my daughters. My oldest is getting married in September and they think they can get back in my graces by trying to get through to my kids. I'm tired of drama, I'm tired of the anxiety that it causes me. I physically can't take the pressure from them any longer.

Does anyone have and suggestions as to how I should handle this situation? Anyone else have a similar situation? All advice is welcome!
Replied By: imkayleesmom on Jan 29, 2015, 12:49PM - In reply to pumpkinchick
I have a similar situation going on. I no longer have anything to do with my sisters or brothers. Both of my parents are deceased. I've never known what it was like to have a real family. I am the youngest of eight children. It's a blened family but I am the only child between my parents. I only have half sisters and brothers. I, like you are treated differently than everyone else.
Replied By: sweettasha0919 on Jan 28, 2015, 6:44AM
I am going through an issue right now that has been going on since I was four years old. My father has been married four times and divorced each of those women because of something he's done. Each of those marriages he has had two children each. Out of all of them there are six of us, three boys and three girls. I am the eldest daughter from his first marriage. Because of all the issues that happened with his three ex-wives after my mother, it has turned into nothing but hate. Each of the ex-wives have turned it into that my older brother and I are his favorites and he loves us more. Because of that, my middle two brother and sister don't even speak to me which is not my fault. Their mother poisoned their minds because of his lies and deceit. I am trying hard to get them to talk to me. My father still won't say anything is his fault. Here it is, years later, his two eldest kids are 32 (my older brother) and 30 (me) are taking the brunt of all the mean things that have happened all these years. And last year my father told me after he was caught by the FBI for watching child pornography, it has made me wonder what else he has lied about all these years. I have stopped talking to him and yet, my older brother is mad at me for not wanting to talk to him. They both don't understand that, after finding out what my father did, it brought up a lot of hard memories of being molested when I was 7 by a family member. I can't be around my father nor do I want him around my two children.  I am trying to rebuild the family relationships with all of us siblings, but I feel like I am fighting a neverending battle because of him. Any suggestions?
Replied By: littlejean579 on Jan 22, 2015, 4:51AM
Hello everyone I am Erica.

It's been over ten years and yet my nightmares feel like yesterday still! I can't stand the thought of using the hate word but I'm there when it comes to my mother. I need help so badly. This is no way to live! When I was little she got naked in front of me and asked me if I was ready to have sex. My sister and I were molested by her husband also. We were abused all the time for no reason! My anger grows worse and worse everyday because she will never admit to her wrong doing. I also hate her because when I had a miscarriage she said "good because I would be a terrible mother"! How do you forgive someone who says that to you, your own kid? Of coarse she doesn't remember that and denies it. I know she had it rough to but everyone has to deal with their own consequences especially if they caused their own pain. I'm tired of the excuses how can you change yourself for the better if you don't listen to the people you hurt and just deny every doing those things. She needs to take a lie detector test because till this day no one believes that my own mother asked me if I was ready to have sex while her husband was naked on the bed. Everyone has this outlook about me that is based on her lies. No one will ever give me a chance to prove I'm better than that. I now have my own daughter who is 8 months old. When I found out I was pregnant I went back to college and straightened up because I knew what I had to do for her. I really am a good person but I can't live a normal life with normal friends and normal thoughts because I can't make peace with my past. I try so hard but I just can't do it alone. But I have no one who can help me the way I need. Everyone is so quick to judge and hurt me but if only they knew I use to want to die I just quit caring about myself. I used to hurt myself because I was just tired of crying tears weren't enough for me. I'm still alive because God had other plans for me. I need to make peace with my life or the stress will literally kill me. I'm only 21 and I don't wish this pain on my worst enemy. Can anyone please help?
Replied By: silvestra on Jan 21, 2015, 8:46AM

My name is Silvestra, I'm 23.I fell in love when I was 18 with a shcool friend of mine and we got married at 20 and had our beautiful daughter before we were 21.It's been 3 years of mariage now, but I feel like we felt out of love.I don't know exactly when my problems started,if it was before getting married or after , but I now feel horible for the angry person I have become.I feel bullied by my parents in law. My problems started during my pregnancy. I think due to the problems I had during the pregnancy I got into a deep depression and never got out of it.I suffered this problem during my teenage years, but I think the pregnancy was a big deal for me to handle.Not being ready to have and support a baby, no job, no experience...and then, after convincing myself for the blessing I had with me, I was told that there were 50% chances for my daughter not to survive because of a problem doctors here in Albania call Oligoamnios.Thank God, my baby was born healthy and beautiful. Due to the fact she was premature, she always had weak health and was always getting sick.So we decided to keep her at home. Me or my mother in law had to stop working to take care of my daughter.So due to the fact that I was getting paid more than my mother in law, she stoped working and started taking care of the house ond my daughter Gabriela. Everything started getting way worse after that.After 1 year my father in law decided to stop working too, and started drinking a lot (there is a traditional alcohool beverage here in Albania called Raki), and he gets drunk every day.So we are 5 persons at home, and from more than 1 year only 2 of us work.Meanwhile we have to do everything else. Cover all the expenses, repair everything at home, have discussions and fights because of money ( We earn enough money to support the family we have, but still it is never enough for my in laws).My mother in law is a very manipulative person, and she treats me very very bad, and then when my husband comes back home, she starts telling him things about me that don't excist. I've had so many fights in that house with my husband and my in laws that now I directly lose my temper. I start shouting and berely control myself , because I tend to become violent.The problem is that I started to treat my daughter that way. I used to be very calm and had the capacity to explane everything to her, but now I feel so tired and mentaly exhausted that I can't stand her most of the time. I hate my self for that because I've been blessed with that child.She's amazing.

But after all the fighting and shouting and stupid problems I have in that house, I feel the need to separate from my husband, take my daughter and move away.The problem is that here we live in a very masculine country, and mu father would be humiliated because of my divorce and he keeps telling me that I have to stop complaining and to thank God for what I have.He tells me that it will be more difficult without my husband and his family than with them.The problem is that I'm feeling so bad, and I've started to consider suicide, and I don't want to lose my mind one day and do it.
Can anyone please, tell me what should I do, for my husband doesn't understand how hard it is getting for me..I just want to be there while my daughter is growing up and I want to be calm enough to dedicate myself to her.
Please someone hel :'( 
Replied By: jersey3720 on Jan 15, 2015, 5:01PM - In reply to jersey3720
Surely someone can help me out here.
Replied By: highschoolguy on Jan 14, 2015, 6:44PM
Hello everyone, my name is Eustice and I live in a household with my mom, my dad, and my sister. There have been escalating problems within the last few years. My mom is bipolar and depressed and she is not doing to well. She is 59. My dad has diabetes and high blood pressure and does not take care of himself at all. He is 72. My sister is going through the teen years and always thinks she is right and never gets along with my mother, which usually starts the problems. I am a teenage boy and have been dating a girl for 4 months now and it is getting really serious. I have stayed the night at her house 3 times, with both of the parents permission. Today, however, I asked if I can stay the night after my snowball dance, and my mom got really mad and started yelling at me. When my mom says no, I always get mad, which is another way problems start. But the reason why i am posting is because i need advice to get our family to get along. A few nights ago, my sister would not listen to my dad from upstairs in her room, so my mom texted her (peacefully) and told her to give her my sisters phone and my sisters laptop. Of course like every other teenage girl, my sister was not happy so she yelled and screamed down the stairs and my mom and my sister were yelling at each other. Finally, my sister threw her phone and the laptop, hit her head really hard against the wall three times (I was suprised she wasn't concussed), and fell to the floor banging her fists. Also, two weeks back my mom broke her ankle and has been house ridden since, which has only made the problems worse. At first, she worked and got away from the house for awhile, which is what was keeping her sane. A couple months back, my mom threw a tantrum and started throwing everything that she could find including: silverware, dishes, pens, stamps, etc., just common house hold items. Now, the words my mom use are very harsh and hurt mine and my sisters feelings. They have ranged anywhere from little b**ch to f**k you or youre a failure, just anything you can think of. My sister is very mean also, she says she hates my mom and yells at her and never gets along with her. They very seldom get along. Me, i piss my mom off in two ways. I usually complain when she asks me to do things, and i always want to hangout with my girlfriend. I would just like any advice at all that could maybe somehow fix or make a little better the problems i have at home.

Thank you for your time and comments
Replied By: kaykaykitten1 on Jan 13, 2015, 4:11PM - In reply to josnj11
My mother was the same with me when I was a teen. I didn't earn a phone until I was in 12th grade. You are supposed to be protective, you need to be with all the technology and scammers and creeps/pervs out there lerking on the world wide web. Other parents don't do it because people have come to this feeling like, "oh my kid has to like me, my kid needs to think I'm a cool parent" and that isn't what it is about. I hated how my mom watched out for me as a teen because I was a know it all teens are. But, looking back now at 25  if my mother hadn't been a parent, I may have ended up pregnant, on drugs, in a abusive relationship, I would have probably never gone to college and I probably would sleep around like I see a lot of teens doing these days. Which is sad, they see the girls in the media not respecting themselves or their bodies or images and want to be "cool" like them. They want to be liked by all the boys and at that young dumb age will do almost anything to be cool. So being active and whating what your child is doing on their phome, who they are talking to and what kind of information they may be giving to creeps is what a parent should do. Maybe that is just me but, parents aren't supposed to be their kids cool bff... they are supposed to be the loving annoying parent that watches and protects them. All my friends had cool parents...... they are all either drug addicts, young mothers, or drop outs. Their parents didn't care enough to push them or watch them like my uncool parent lol.. Keep it up, you are saving your teen from herself. I have 3 college degrees and got to pick my college and I am aware of the world and the scammers and creeps in it because of my mother. You can't protect your child from everything, so protect her from the things you CAN. :)Hope this helps.
Replied By: jersey3720 on Jan 6, 2015, 6:09PM
I believe I am safe asking this question here. Friends, 9 years ago I met and quickly married someone I met on the internet. I had just been divorced from my first husband who I had been with a total of 33 (married 27) years. I moved 1300 miles away  from life as I knew it. My kids at the time were 17, 19 and 21. No one knew what happened, why did I go? (I don't think I knew myself). I do have a relationship (strained) with my youngest two, my oldest struggles and we rarely communicate, she hurts real bad. I quickly realized I made a huge mistake within two days actually, and tried to get the marriage annuled. I did not meet the criteria to make that happen, so I stayed with him. I have been miserable and so unhappy, I can count on one hand the "happy" times. I tried in 2009 to go back home and make a life for myseld (he did not know) - I failed miserably at securing a job and or a place of my own. I stayed with a friend during  that time as my oldest was in a one BR and was not even talking to me then, my middle rented from her dad and my youngest still lived at home with dad. So, I came back to my miserable life. I stay because he has kept my name on his retirement and life insurance (not the whole 100% but a decent percentage). Only if he passes before me, I will get the money. I go over in my head all the things I have missed ll these years I have stayed, living in this hell. My youngest two graduating, my oldest two getting married and the births of my two  grandchildren among other things. It has been 4 years now since I have seen any of my family or friends. I have reached the point where I see I am staying because of what I "might" get as beneficiary on those two accounts-heck it may be me who goes first! I want to ask him to buy me out and live on my own. For now I would probably stay in the town I am in as I have a job, 30 hours per week but I do get health insurance. At my age it is very hard to find employment and for me to relocate back home is something I know I cannot afford to do right now. Friends, what is your opinion and is there something you can see by my story that I am not  thinking of that might come back at me? Thank you, I am grateful for any input you have and for not judging me.
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