Ask Jigsaw: Feeling trapped with parents arguing


I was just wondering if you have any advice of how to cope with feeling really trapped as a result of covid?

As usual, my parents are fighting non stop and I would normally just stay outside a lot longer or be with friends to avoid being at home and experiencing it, but now that I’m home all the time, I’ve been having to deal with it a lot more.

This has also often ended up with me getting in the middle of their conflict (often to side my mam) and then ending up arguing with my dad.

I just can’t help but feel hopeless as I wonder when things will be a bit normal, so that I don’t have to be at home all the time/ listen to them argue 24/7.

I can’t really talk to them about its impact on me as neither of them listen to anyone else’s views, apart from their own.

Anyway I don’t know if what I just said even makes sense but I’ve just been feeling really horrible recently and don’t know how to cope with it all, like it’s making me really dislike my parents (which I end up feeling guilty about- but that’s a whole different story).

Thanks 4 reading this and replying, if you do 🙂 x

– Lilah

Hi Lilah,

It makes total sense! Sounds like a lot of the challenges you were managing at home have become amplified due to COVID-19 restrictions. On top of that, some of your usual coping strategies aren’t available to you anymore. It’s important that you remember your parents’ fights are not your fault.

Ask Jigsaw: Supporting my friends

All of my close friend have been through bad mental health. Some just took time off school to reboot, some to therapists , and some to cahms/st.pats. I’ve been there for all of them throughout the years. First one was age 9 to now. Some are doing good and some are going down the wrong path into drugs. One in particular who I’ve known for my whole life is now known as the ‘popular pretty girl who was in a mental hospital’. She’s now heavy on drugs and can’t go a few days without going out and taking more. I don’t know what to do it’s starting to eat me up inside and now I can see myself going down the same path as the others in terms of mental health.

I was the strong happy funny kind girl who everyone counted on and vented to but now it’s all getting too much and I can’t separate myself because they all need my help but I also can’t continue doing this because I’m slowly losing my mind. I’m going into 6th year now so I want school to be my number one concern but my friends are all good in a bad place and I need to be there for them so I don’t know what to do. I don’t know if I’m making sense there’s so much more to it and my minds going crazy.

I just need advice on how to balance helping my friends , school , social life and my own mental health and prepare myself for 6th year.


Hi Butterfly,

It’s sounds like you are a really compassionate person and have been there for a lot of your friends over the years. While it is a nice to be able to support others, without a doubt it can take a toll on us. You may have heard the flight attendant on an airplane telling you to ‘look after your own mask first’. This is because, unless we prioritise looking after ourselves, we won’t have the capacity to be there for someone else. Looking after your own mental health is not a luxury, it is a necessity.

Ask Jigsaw: I miss my ex and want him back

I have recently been through I rough breakup. My ex boyfriend got mad at me because I went on a night out without him. He broke up with me over text while I was out that night. He ruined my night and when I tried to ring him he wouldn’t answer me. My ex has often said hurtful things to me before, such as belittling my job towards his and saying how much more money he makes than me.

We argued like any other couple, nothing too reoccurring and not too often. After trying again and again to talk to him after that night out he won’t talk or reply to me. I respect his decision if he doesn’t want to be with me but I feel as though the least he could do if he truly cared about me was just give me and explanation as to why he did what he did.

I wouldn’t call our relationship abusive but he was controlling to a certain extent; getting mad at me for going to concerts / nights out without him, talking to his friends when we both were around them and if I talked to any other boys . I know my worth and I know how he treated me is not on but I can’t help but miss him and want him back. At the minute he is the only person I want to talk to and I genuinely don’t know what to do.


Hi there EvC123,

Breaking up with someone can be a really complicated and emotional time. It sounds like you are reflecting a lot on whether returning to this relationship would be a good thing for you to do. You might feel lonely on your own, particularly when you are used to being able to speak to your ex. It takes courage to seek help from someone new, so thank you for using this space.

Ask Jigsaw: Don’t want to stress parents

I feel like if I talk about my problems right now it’ll stress my parents out, and that maybe I’m just over reacting. What should I do?


Hi Xeron,

It’s not unusual to feel apprehensive about speaking to family about the difficulties we’re facing. There are lots of reasons why we might retreat inwards and hold all our feelings to ourselves. We can feel like we are protecting ourselves from the judgement of others. Maybe we feel guilty about causing worry, or we want to be able to handle it alone. It takes courage to recognise that we all need support sometimes and we can’t face all our challenges alone.

Ask Jigsaw: Fear of failure

Do you have any info as to where a 25 year old male could get advice about finding a job? His anxiety and depression means he has never succesfully held down a job.

Fear of failure stops him from giving anything a fair go but not having a job adds to his sense of worthlessness. He says he would like to find a foolproof job that he couldnt make a mistake at. He is in cork area.


Hi Alfie,

It sounds like your friend is stuck in a bit of a negative cycle. He doesn’t believe he can be successful in a job. This worry or fear then becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Ask Jigsaw: What is counselling?

What is counselling?

– Jojo

Hi Jojo,

We hear the term ‘counselling’ used a lot, and in reality it can mean different things to different people. The Cambridge Dictionary defines counselling as ‘the job or process of listening to someone and giving them advice about their problems’.  Probably most of us do this with our friends, although we would not necessarily say we are counsellors.

Ask Jigsaw: Hate living but don’t want to die

I smoke a lot of weed to take away the feeling of life. I hate living but don’t want to die how can I change this?


Thank you for your honesty in this question. It sounds like you feel very stuck and unhappy with the way things are for you at the moment. It is not unusual when people feel like this that they use substances such as drugs or alcohol to try to take away or numb the feelings. Although it can seem that this helps in the short term, often it adds to the overall problem, as cannabis can have a depressant effect. It can decrease our motivation to make changes that are needed. If you want support specifically around reducing your weed intake, you can find information and a list of services at http://www.drugs.ie/

Ask Jigsaw: How do I stop caring what other people think?

How do I stop caring what other people think if it’s taking over my life and ruining things for me


Hi Ktxxxx,

Most of us are concerned about what other people think of us to some extent or another at different times in our life. We want to feel accepted and that we belong and are liked for who we are.

Ask Jigsaw: Pain of losing a friend

Hi, I’m 15 years old and I’m in 3rd year. Last year I told my best friend whenever I felt suicidal. My parents said that I’d leaned too heavily on my best friend that she couldn’t take it anymore. I wasn’t allowed to speak to her anymore, I never actually got to speak to her after that. She started telling people why we weren’t friends anymore.

 I had a horrendous year trying to make new friends. I fell out with some and kept others. Now I have a group of friends who I love. But it doesn’t feel the same. I’m still going thro the pain of loosing her. Is there anything anyone can do to help? I just need advice. I want to talk to her one last time. To get closer. Please help if you can!

–Anonymous *Please note his question has been edited in length from the original submission

Hi there,

It can be really difficult when we fall out with a close friend, particularly if we feel that there have been misunderstandings or things that have been left unsaid. Within every situation that results in friends falling out, there are at least two perspectives on what has happened. Naturally, we tend to focus on our own perspective.  The pain of losing a friend and how it felt for us. We try to make sense of what happened in a way that fits with our own narrative.

It can be difficult to do, but if we can suspend our own version of events and try and view it from the other person’s perspective, without trying to argue our side it can help to give us a bit of insight into why they may be behaving in the way that they are. Understanding can help, even if we don’t agree with or condone it.

Ask Jigsaw: Would people remember me?

Do you think if i killed myself people would remember me because i feel like I’m not the kinda person to be dwelled, School is getting harder and harder and sometimes it feels like i cant breathe with the persure being put on me, Sorry for bothering you with my problems feel free to ignore x


Hi Emma,

Thank you for getting in touch and talking about these difficult feelings. It sounds like things are really tough for you at the moment.

I would urge you to get support, and there are a number of options. First of all, think if there is an adult in your life who you could talk to about these feelings. It could be a family member, teacher or any one you trust. If it’s hard to say things out loud, you could show them this message and let them know that it is you.