Questions in the Human Relations category.
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May 23

How do you handle confrontation with strangers?

I'm not a confrontational person, but sometimes it seems necessary. How do you approach and handle this? Details below the fold. [more inside]
posted by stillmoving at 11:42 AM - 15 answers

May I invite a friend to take a walk?

So, even though I live with a spouse and children, I am lonely. Would it be OK to ask a friend -- or even a somewhat friendly acquaintance who lives nearby -- to take a walk around the neighborhood with me for 20 minutes or so? (More inside) [more inside]
posted by PaulVario at 7:14 AM - 29 answers

May 22

Is it time to leave?

Should I give up moderating in an online community because of one obnoxious person? [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 12:41 PM - 25 answers

Dealing with broodiness -- decided no more kids but heart says otherwise

Title pretty much says it all. For lots of very good reasons, my partner, my head and I have decided that our family is complete. My heart feels entirely differently, and I can't stop thinking about more kids! Help? [more inside]
posted by caoimhe at 7:02 AM - 9 answers

May 21

How do I stop being so stressed out about my mother?

I called my mother today and her latest medical calamity sent me into a spiral of anxiety. She's aging, she's mentally ill, she does the bare minimum to take care of herself, and... god... I'm just exhausted. It's one thing after the next with her all the time and, likely, always will be until she dies? Aside from therapy (which I'm in), what else should I be doing? I'd like to dial down my stress from, at least, an 8.5 to a 5. [more inside]
posted by VirginiaPlain at 9:58 PM - 21 answers

How to accept good advice given badly

I work with a lot of smart people, who are all across the board regarding social skills. As a woman in a junior position I will often get advice and feedback presented in layers of condescension or other unpleasantness that make it hard for me to separate my initial annoyed reaction from my judgement on whether or not the content is valid, which it often is! It is easy for me to shrug off people who are both annoying and wrong - much harder to recognize comments that are annoying but right. How can I get better at this?
posted by btfreek at 12:28 PM - 16 answers

How to support friend emotionally without agreeing with them

I have a close friend who has been in an ongoing conflict with their downstairs apartment neighbor for the past few months. Without going into details, I think the neighbor is being unreasonable and is the one initiating all of the conflict; however, I think my friend is making the situation worse by responding angrily and escalating the situation. [more inside]
posted by mekily at 10:07 AM - 14 answers

May 20

How do I get my relatives to reconsider their summer travel plans?

My uncle and aunt (both mid 60s) live in Portugal and are planning to drive up to Gothenburg, Sweden this summer. They plan to isolate in their summer house which is located on an island outside Gothenburg and have promised not to go into the city for the two months they are in the country. Both have high blood pressure, are slightly overweight (they are working on this), and my aunt takes medication for a mild heart condition. Help me talk them out of this plan. [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 2:44 PM - 10 answers

housemate woes - quarantine edition

How do I turn my focus away from my housemate who is getting on my last nerve? [more inside]
posted by Armed Only With Hubris at 11:07 AM - 26 answers

May 19

What can you do with one child that you can’t do with two or more?

We have one child (9). We are in the process of conceiving a second, and are interested in potentially having a third shortly thereafter. What are some experiences you can have as a three person family that you can’t have as a family of four or more? What should I strive to savor in the next year? [more inside]
posted by unstrungharp at 4:22 PM - 31 answers

Worksheet/homework for defining and making progress toward life goals

I'm feeling deep ennui in quarantine and approaching that age where everyone is having kids, but that's not my plan. I want to do something else, but I'm feeling aimless and blah. I tried a coaching session but just talking doesn't work for me: I want structure. I want homework. Please point me to something that has helped you set and structure steps towards (not purely financial!) personal goals, whether it's a downloadable PDF, interactive form, or a workbook I can to purchase. Thank you.
posted by thirdletter at 1:53 PM - 9 answers

How do I deal with intense regrets?

For the past decade I have been quite depressed and consumed with regrets, which has prevented me living my life fully. Up until 18, I was academically bright but I developed social anxiety and depression and things went downhill from there. The past decade has seen a lot of progress for me (in context), but I cannot stop beating myself up for it not being enough and for all the "wrong" decisions I made. How do I get myself out of this repetitive loop of ruminating about regrets? [more inside]
posted by Sunflower88 at 4:53 AM - 20 answers

May 18

A friend's husband passed away - weird to send money?

An online friend (let's call her J) posted last week that her husband (W) passed away. I've known J for more than 20 years through various online platforms and met up with her once for coffee when she was moving cross country and passing through my town. I messaged her my condolences and am sending a card tomorrow. Would be it weird/awkward to send money? Or to ask if there's a college fund for her son I could contribute to? [more inside]
posted by Twicketface at 7:06 PM - 12 answers

How to deal with Trump-supporting Family Friends?

My wife and sons love this other family that are Trump supporters. I can't stand them. It's tearing us apart. How can I navigate this? [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 11:28 AM - 30 answers

I'm estranged from my mother. Should I reach out to her?

My mother was both damaged and damaging, and most times I just get angry when I think about her. Sometimes, though, I get wrenches of pain and sadness at the thought. Am I being selfish? [more inside]
posted by katiecat at 5:11 AM - 39 answers

Be Yourself

How to push through my vulnerability and stop being triggered at work? [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 4:45 AM - 11 answers

Books or resources for decoupling self-worth & productivity

What are some books, podcasts, or other resources that explore the importance of slowing down, rest as resistance, the benefits of laziness, or general critiques of the culture of The Grind? [more inside]
posted by mingo_clambake at 2:22 AM - 16 answers

May 15

How to respond to people who ascribe negative motives to a comment?

I always struggle with proper response to belligerent person who's own chronic anger or paranoia leads them to ascribe a negative motivation to a neutral comment. Example might be I make a joke about a specific friend who's overly devoted to a political figure, belligerent person responds "so you think all [political figure]'s supporters are that crazy?"
posted by Jon44 at 7:06 AM - 28 answers

May 14

We don't see eye to eye, or hear ear to ear

Today, I had a pretty big disagreement with a coworker about a situation that needs a resolution tomorrow. All of my worst personality traits are coming to the surface, how can I find way to resolve this situation amicably? [more inside]
posted by VirginiaPlain at 8:10 PM - 31 answers

White privilege? Something less benign?

Today I expressed some concerns to my partner regarding the uptick of racist attacks against asians in our city. He responded with a surprising degree of indifference. He is white, and I am asian. I'm not sure how to process this or if I overreacted. [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 7:24 AM - 41 answers

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