My boyfriend always gets in a mood when my famiy visits

DEAR DEIDRE: OUR front door is like one of those on a saloon – constantly swinging back and forth with all the family coming and going.

Admittedly, it is mostly my children who visit, but I’m finding my boyfriend’s moods really difficult to handle.

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I am 55 and he is 53. We have a good relationship apart from his sulks when he takes himself off to his bedroom – sometimes for the entire day.

We have a lot of family who rely on us.

My daughter often brings her children to us to look after because she can’t afford childcare, and my son is also living with us while he finds a new job.

My boyfriend’s two sons are always asking for favours from us, too.

I feel like I support them but don’t think he is doing the same for my children.

He is bipolar and I know he sometimes struggles.

But that doesn’t help how isolated I often feel.

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DEIDRE SAYS: There are certainly a lot of demands on your time and energy and bipolar disorder is a difficult condition for you both to live with.

It sounds like you need a supportive conversation about which commitments you both want to keep and which you should limit.

If you continue without addressing this, you are in danger of driving each other apart.

Get in contact with, which has links to local support groups who will offer help to you both.

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