How to help my girlfriend manage her parents

How to help my girlfriend manage her parents

I don’t know whether I need help. This one is about my girlfriend and her mother. So basically, my girlfriend and I were living together but due to financial troubles she moved home which is fine. Her mother loved the thought of having her back home for about 3 hours. Then it went back to how it used to be according to my girlfriend. Her mother yells at her, takes her stuff away and makes her basicallly be her free maid; cook, clean, tidy, feed the pets, walk the dog as well as pay rent, have a full time job. However the parents stop doing these chores as they make her do it (I understand everyone parents are different but it gets worse) so my girlfriend isn’t allowed to stay up late, she’s not allowed to have her room how she likes it as her mother will come in and take stuff out, move it about, or get rid of things. Like recently I took her PS4 and a tv back I had given her. Her parents took the PS4 out of her room and hid it claiming that she didn’t ask them if she could have it (my gf is 19 years old) and that they’d take the tv. The only reason they didn’t is because my girlfriend said it wasn’t hers and it was mine and they know I’d make them pay me for it if they touched it. It gets worse. So my girlfriend didn’t want to dry dishes today. She’d been at work morning until late as it’s mothers day and she works in a kitchen so it was busy. She then got home and cooked food for her family as she was told to, then when she said that her little brother (who’s 16) could dry the dishes her mother started yelling. Things escalated and my girlfriend just rang me, in tears saying she feels dead, she doesn’t know who she is anymore and that her mother had hit her. She had hit her as hard as she could across her face. Now I have some problems with anger, so I’ve reacted strangely to this because of course my mind goes to “fight” mode which I won’t do. I’m also tempted to call the police but know nothing would happen as my girlfriend is so afraid to do anything in case it all gets worse as she can’t afford to live out because her parents are taking most of her money that she’s making, so she’s worried. I don’t know what to do, it’s getting to the point now where my girlfriend went to a doctor and was told she might have depression. I’m worried about the possibility of suicide because of the mothers’ actions. I don’t like the mother and she doesn’t like me, so we don’t talk, but if things keep going this way I feel like I’m going to say something bad. I just want some advice.  Nothing is going to help the mum, she’s a lost cause, but I want to help my girlfriend. I can’t afford to rent a house for me and her by myself, and she can’t afford to get out due to her parents taking her money (even if she hides it in her room). I’m worried, and lost, please someone help. I wish there was some chat room to talk about this, so if there is could you please let me know. Thank you very much.


Consider This:

  •  It is apparent that you want to help your girlfriend.  The best thing you can do right now is to listen to her and provide her support.
  • It can be hard to watch her go through these situations with her mother and father.  By providing a caring ear to her problems, she may be able to cope with the stress at home and eventually move back out.
  • If you see that she is becoming more depressed or unable to cope with the stress of living at home, encourage her to seek some help from a trusted counselor or adult.
  • Your girlfriend is still very young and it can be difficult to live on your own.  It can also be difficult to live under the roof of your parents and following their rules.
  • Although it is not okay to put others down, take advantage of others through expecting chores completed, or take their money, it must be her decision to talk to her parents about how she is treated. If you feel for her safety, you can notify the police and file a report, but encourage her to talk to them and seek out the support of a relative or another adult to help create a more positive home atmosphere.


  • What kind of things can you to be sure to take care of yourself so you can continue to support her?
  • Who can you talk to share your feelings?
  •  What relatives could you suggest she confide in to seek some support in the home?
  •  What kind of activities can she engage in to help keep her mood positive?