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Dr. Michelle Advice
 
Dr. Michelle K. Murray, CEO of Nexus Family Healing and licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, answers questions about family relations or mental health. Submit Your Question.

 

Teenager on laptop

I Am Worried that My Son Spends Too Much Time Online

I am looking for advice on how to handle my 15-year-old son who is on his phone or computer all the time. He is a good student, he has friends, and he is a great kid that doesn’t get into trouble, so I’m not worried about any one thing in particular. From what I see and what he says, he is online with his friends playing games and watching YouTube videos. It just seems like he should not be on his computer as much as he is, am I right?
Women looking at phone

My Brother Went Two Years without Talking to Me

My older brother, who is 54, has a long history of mental health problems. This has led to a lot of family conflict over the years. He will come in and out of our lives and will accuse family members of things that make no sense. Issues don’t really get resolved because whenever we try to discuss the problems, everybody gets emotional and it seems like it makes things worse. My brother recently reached out to me after not speaking to me for two years and I don’t know if I should respond to him like nothing ever happened, ignore him, or confront him about his past behavior. We are beyond working out old history.
Depressed Man

My Partner Is Depressed

My husband and I have been married for 30 years and have raised 3 children. In fact, our youngest son just moved out this past year. We have lived a wonderful life and feel blessed. Throughout the years, my husband would go through times where he seemed depressed and was down and out, but this would only last about week or so and then he would snap out of it. Now he just seems depressed all of the time. He has a hard time getting out of bed, he is not motivated, and it seems like nothing makes him happy. This has been going on now for more than 8 months. I don’t know what to do to help and I am a bit at my wits end. Help!!
Picture of Grandma and Grandson

My Grandmother Passed Away from COVID

My grandmother died two months ago from COVID. She was 78 years old and diabetic. Whenever people learn that she died from COVID, they ask me if she had other medical problems. The fact is, had she not caught COVID, she would still be alive today. I was very close to my grandmother and am having a very difficult time coming to terms with her death. I feel so much anger when people ask me if she had other health problems, I just want to scream at them. It feels like they are not taking her death seriously, like it was her fault that she died of COVID because she had diabetes. How can I respond to people so that they understand, because not only am I getting angry, I am finding myself becoming more and more isolated?
Group of Friends

The Girls in My Friend Group Are Sad

I am 14 years old and my close group of friends includes both boys and girls. It seems like the girls in our group are sad and down a lot while us boys don’t seem to worry about stuff too much. I am just wondering if there is a reason for this and what I can do to support the girls?
Writing New Year Resolutions

I Am Trying to Get Excited about New Goals

It's the new year, I'm trying to get excited about new goals, but 2020 has left me worn out. How do I get out of this slump and move on? 
Friends video chatting

I Think My Best Friends Are Depressed

My best friends are kind of sad and I think one of them is depressed. A lot of it has to do with the coronavirus and how our lives have changed. I don't know what to do. I want to help and have promised them that I will. I thought about doing a therapy group where all of us would open-up and talk. But I don't know how, or what to do if they start crying or feeling worse, or if the advice we give each other is ok. By the way we are 15 years old.
Man looking at picture

I Feel Responsible for My Brother's Suicide

I lost my brother to suicide in October 2019 and it’s been so hard. I feel like I caused his suicide and failed to save him. I’m not sleeping, I don’t have any energy and I’m starting to have thoughts of suicide myself. Where do I go from here?
Disagreement

My Husband Is Unwilling to Talk to Me about An Important Issue

How do I get through to my husband without everything ending up in a fight, or ugly words being exchanged? Is this issue indicative of a bigger problem in our relationship?
holiday

Deciding to Visit Family Over the Holidays

I want to spend the holidays with my family, and I want my children to participate in my family traditions, but I am very nervous about COVID. Any advice about how to think through this situation?