Times of Transition Are Difficult at Best and Communication with Your Partner is Key

Times of Transition Are Difficult at Best and Communication with Your Partner is Key

Maybe it’s the change of seasons and as it gets hotter here in NoLa, some relationship issues that involve life-changing events can heat up as well. Our readers seemed especially concerned with major transitional situations recently that leave them questioning their every move. Whether it’s a difficult break-up, unexpectedly having to care for family members or deciding on a move across the country to maintain your relationship, these situations are never easy. They’re awkward, aggravating and emotionally draining. When life challenges us, it’s important to take a few moments to put things in perspective and decide to take the path that is most beneficial to you and those you love.

Just because he gets a transfer to another city doesn't mean you need to pack up your life as well, especially if your bond is already fragile
Just because he gets a transfer to another city doesn't mean you need to pack up your life as well, especially if your bond is already fragile

My boyfriend and I have been living together for three years in the city and I consider our relationship on solid ground, however without consulting me, he applied for a transfer to NYC for a better position within his company. I'm not sure why he didn't tell me and now, he's insisting I move to NYC, abandon my successful career here as a real-estate agent and leave all my friends and family. I don't want my life uprooted but am not sure we can do the long distance thing...any thoughts?

With his new career opportunity comes an opportunity to really evaluate your relationship. You must seriously consider if this man is someone you want to settle down and spend your life with. If you don't really see your boyfriend as the "one", then your answer is simple—break up. Breaking up because he is moving forward with his life and you do not see yourself moving forward with him is a perfectly acceptable reason to end your relationship. Given that he’s moving off to New York, there won’t be awkward run-ins or fighting over friends. If, however, you think it's possible that your boyfriend may be the “one” and he is worth holding onto, things get trickier. I completely understand why you do not want to pack up and move, so explain this to your boyfriend. If he's the great guy you deserve, then he’ll understand. There are many questions you need to ask not only yourself, but your boyfriend as well. Is New Orleans a place you will never be able to leave? Would finding another real estate job in NYC make the move worth it? How often would you be able to see your family if you moved? Is NYC a final destination? If you think he’s worth it and you believe you can handle the adventure, pack up and move. Worst case scenario—you break up and move back to New Orleans. If you aren't quite ready to pack up your entire life, that’s okay too. You and your boyfriend must discuss if you believe you can last long distance and what the possibilities of reconnecting are in the future. If you don't, you’ll end up resenting your boyfriend and being unhappy with your life.

Caring for the elderly is a challenge while working at home but visiting health care professionals can ease the challenge
Caring for the elderly is a challenge while working at home but visiting health care professionals can ease the challenge

My husband and I were just married last year and his mother suffers from severe Alzheimer's. At the moment, although she has enough money to go to an assisted living facility or nursing home, he wants her to come here to live here with us. His mother is a wonderful person, however I work from home as a freelance graphic artist and I know that I would be the primary caretaker, taking away from my ability to do my work. I don't know how to say no without seeming like a horrible person.

This is a really tough situation. Dealing with a loved one suffering from Alzheimer's is very hard. It is emotionally draining and can take a huge toll on your family. On one hand, I completely understand why you do not want your husband's mother living with you. On the other, I understand your husband's hesitation to put her in a nursing home. There never seems to be a right answer with these situations. However, what is important is honesty. Tell your husband your concerns with his mother living with you. Let him know you understand where he is coming from, but be firm in letting him know the problems you see with his solution. Being a primary caretaker is a huge job and very stressful. Let him know that this worries you. What you two must do is sit down and have an honest talk. What would be best for not only you two, but for his mother as well? You should do some research as well. There may be more options out there. Would hiring an in-home caretaker be beneficial? Is there a difference between assisted living facilities and nursing homes? There’s a lot to think about, but ultimately if you are both striving for what is best for your family, you will reach a solution that works for everyone.

Think carefully before pursuing a new relationship with a handsome neighbor after breaking up with your live-in boyfriend
Think carefully before pursuing a new relationship with a handsome neighbor after breaking up with your live-in boyfriend

My boyfriend and I of seven years are splitting up. We live together but he has taken an apartment elsewhere and I am moving out of our apartment at the end of the month. Things have not been going well for the past year and a half and he initiated the split, as he's been seeing other women outside of our relationship. Now that he's gone, I've become interested in someone who lives in our apartment building. He's extremely handsome and successful but I feel a little unsure as how to proceed. I'm ready to move on but doing so before I leave here is a touchy situation. Any advice?

If moving on before you leave the apartment you shared with your boyfriend is touchy, wait until you move out. A few weeks is not a terribly long time to wait. And by waiting, you give yourself some time to do things for yourself and rediscover that strong single woman you were before you met your ex. By giving yourself some time, you’ll find yourself healing and you’ll have a better idea of how you want to proceed with the new relationship. The easiest way to kick off a romantic relationship is through a friendship. This will give you time to get to know him better without the stress and nerves that come from the beginning of dating. You will also get back some confidence from your new friendship and it will slowly ease you back into the dating world. That being said, it is not always easy to switch from a friendship to a romantic relationship. If you feel confident and ready, ask him out. The worst that could happen is he says no. At least that way you find out early on and can gather yourself and continue the search.

Taking on the responsibility of raising teens who recently lost a parent, requires teamwork with your mate
Taking on the responsibility of raising teens who recently lost a parent, requires teamwork with your mate

My sister recently died in a horrible car crash in Alabama and she had two children, both in their early teens. She divorced about six years ago and not on an amicable basis. We don't even know where her ex-husband is and he's been a dead beat dad...no child support whatsoever. Nevertheless, she named me the official guardian of her children in her will and I will now be responsible for them in a few weeks. My husband is not on board with this at all…I am between a rock and a hard place. I love my two nieces and will do everything I can to take care of them. Any ideas as how to get my husband to join me in this endeavor?

Right now your husband may just be in shock. It is a huge change to go from a house with no children to a house with two teenagers. However, you need to let him know that however difficult this seems to him, it is infinitely more difficult for your nieces. They just lost their mother in a horrible accident, and right now they need all the family they can get. Give some time for it to set in, and your husband should come around. If he was on board with it when your sister established it in her will, he should be on board now. If you take the time to explain why it is important to you, he'll come around and support your decision.