Probs with ALL of my family members!

I really hate my home life. My dad is older than most, and he is ALWAYS either seriously ill or recovering from being in the hospital. 
My mom acts a little bi-polar: nice, then suddenly screaming at me. She also puts A LOT of religious pressure on me, and wants me to go to church, read the Bible, etc. even though I don't believe in any of it. I want to try, but ON MY OWN. Sitting for an hour every Sunday isn't going to make it all suddenly clear or anything. I don't even pay attention. She also doesn't treat me as though I am responsible in ANYTHING, even though I am very responsible.

Finally, my brother is a total and complete jerk. He also is OBSESSED with one of his friends, who cusses, is much bigger than me, and is EXTREMELY violent. (I don't like to even be anywhere near him, he's so scary)

I've never been severely injured emotionally or physically; I just literally HATE IT at home. I don't think I can go to a foster home for that. What should I do?

-Home Hater

Hey girly,

I’m really sorry to hear that you’re unhappy with your family. Everybody has family problems, but you must be so stressed by it all. It’s not going to be easy but let’s tackle your family problems one step at a time.

Dealing with dad

Let’s start with your dad. When a family member is sick, it’s always scary. You might not know what to say, and it can be tough to comfort them when you're uncomfortable with the situation, too. Whatever the case is, have a positive outlook through it all. Share a smile with your dad or write him a heartfelt card to let him know that you care for him. That will give him all the strength that he needs through these times.

Making peace with your mama

As for your mom, you need to have an honest, serious talk with her. Open up to her and tell her what’s on your mind. But when you do, let her know that you understand where she’s coming from. You want to show her that you aren’t just complaining, but that you are truly concerned with the relationship you have with her. Tell her that you want to find a compromising point where you and your mom are both happy. Say you're really considering her faith, but don't want to feel forced into it.

Battling with the bro

With your brother, talking to him isn’t the best solution. A lot of teens go through a stage where they are best friends with lots of different peeps. Sometimes these pals are a bad influence. For your bro, try to stay out of his way. If you still feel scared and intimidated by the way him and his pal are acting, bring it up to a trusted adult like a fave aunt or older cousin. Since they know him better, they'll know how to handle this well. You’ll be doing yourself and your brother a favor.

I know it can seem hopeless right now, but remember that they are still your family. Even during the roughest times, your loved ones will always come through. So don’t lose faith in them and you’ll be able to work it out one by one.

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by Jeannie | 2/1/2016
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