Pat's Answer

I feel so sad all the time.

Your Question

I feel so sad all the time. I don’t even know why, because my life isn’t remotely even bad by most standards— but I just feel like I have so many things bringing me down all the time. Most days I’m able to gloss over them, but others I feel really down. (Today was horrible, that’s why I’m typing this out.) I love my parents, obviously, but I’m also exhausted by them. My mom is fine, but she just nags and shouts twenty four seven, and it ruins my whole mood. Even if I didn’t do anything, the second she steps into the door when she’s home from work, she’s sure to yell my name. However, she can be understanding when my dad yells at me— which is a lot. My dad and I somewhat have the same personality, meaning we’re both stubborn and unwilling to give up in arguments until our point is proven victorious. However, whenever I even *try* argue my point respectfully, he never lets me. And more than that, he will yell about other things too once he’s angry, even if they have nothing to do with what he got mad about in the first place. He is overly strict and controlling; I just want to live my life like a normal teenager sometimes. Once when I told him I thought he was controlling, he didn’t forget about it for a good few weeks. He can be nice sometimes, so I forget just how bad he can be, then he proves me wrong and makes me remember. They’re both the reason I cannot wait to move out at 18 (if I’m able to.) I have a date marked in my calendar. It cant get here soon enough.
But family problems aren’t the only thing concerning me right now. Gender identity and sexual orientation are a big thing on my mind now. Im choosing to go unlabelled (or even say I’m straight, in most cases) as of now, but if I’m being honest with myself, that’s mostly out of fear. I think I may be a lesbian. But I don’t want to admit this— my parents wouldn’t accept it, not for a very long time. It’s frustrating because they do not mind the LGBTQ community, they’re not homophobic— but if their daughter was gay, it would be a different matter. On the flip side, I’m questioning myself too; what if this is just an act? What if im just plain straight and like giving myself problems to seem ‘important’? … It’s very frustrating. I also started getting gender dysphoria a year ago, and it has only worsened. I don’t want to be a boy, but I don’t want to be a girl. I don’t know what I want to be. Google says non binary, and that sounds amazing— but I also feel like I’m a fraud, or untrue saying I’m nb. I don’t know why. I look androgynous enough, and I don’t want to be perceived as a girl. That’s good enough to be nb, right?
Sorry for the overload of problems. I really needed to get this off my chest, and anyway, I couldn’t find the live chat feature.


Hi, you are very welcome to Ask Pat. Thank you for trusting and sharing everything with us, and we hope you do feel better after getting this off your chest.

It sounds like you have a lot going on for you now, and plenty to process. You have mentioned the relationship you have with both your parents as well as the fact that you are busy figuring out your own sexual identity, and that all of this is bringing you down. You have been so honest and open in explaining everything. That’s very brave of you.

Firstly, lets look at your thoughts on sexual identity. It’s completely understandable to have mixed emotions and feelings in this process. On top of that, you also have fears and expectations around how your parents might respond. Your concerns are not uncommon amongst young people as they seek to gain clarity around their sexual identify. However, you do not have to go on this journey of self-discovery alone. Is there trusted adult that you could link in with to chat about how you are feeling? Your feelings about your sexuality are very important and it’s also important to have the opportunity to discuss them with someone. There are organisations which can be supportive and helpful to you if you wish to seek them out. BeLonG To is an organisation that supports the LGBTI+ community in Ireland, and it might a good place for you to start. You can find their website here:

Secondly, your family appear to be very important to you, and you have mentioned some challenges regarding relationships with both of your parents. You said that communication with your parents appears to be in the form of yelling and you have identified that you and your dad have similar personalities. That’s a great awareness to have. With that awareness, we wonder if you can identify a good time to have a chat with your mum or dad, maybe at a relaxing time in the family home. Many young people find it easier to talk to their parents when in the car or when on a walk. When things become heated between you and them, are there things that can help you calm down, such as listening to music?

Sometimes we forget that parents may have some stuff going on for them too, so it could be helpful to check-in before the conversation starts by asking if it’s a good time to chat. It is very normal for families to argue. It is all part of being a family, but it’s important to learn how be self-aware and communicate to your parents how you are feeling.

Your home environment is crucial to your wellbeing and adults should do what’s best for you. Do you have another person who might be able to provide you with support and help you explore options regarding your relationship with your parents? This can be a grandparent or aunt or uncle, a teacher or neighbour. If there is no-one you feel comfortable talking to in your life, there is always Childline for you to call on 1800 66 66 66, or you can use our web chat which you can find at or you might prefer our text service: 50101.

Thank you so much for contacting us, and we hope that you are feeling a little better. It’s important for you to know that you are not alone and that you are able to contact us 24 hours a day, to chat about how you are feeling without judgement from us.

Thank you,


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