Are tensions and conflict driving a wedge between you and your partner?
Are you struggling to connect and communicate?
Do you feel frustrated, fed-up and desperate for a change?
Do you feel that your relationship could improve with counseling, but you doubt that your partner will agree to come?
Do you want to be happier in your relationship and wish you had the communication tools to get you there?
When your relationship hits a rough patch, the idea of dragging your partner in for couples counseling might sound as appealing as standing in line at the DMV. You might be afraid that your partner will say no. And, what does that mean about your relationship? How much does he or she really care or love you? You may believe that your partner will never talk to a stranger about his or her feelings, especially when he or she is barely talking to you right now. This is all okay, and this resistance is very common.
You may feel hurt because your partner doesn’t understand why you are upset. Perhaps you feel lonely because you have no one to talk to about this. You might be worrying about separating or getting divorced. With all of this going on, you may be not be sleeping well, not having much of an appetite and just not feeling like your normal self.
Often, clients come into therapy because they are anxious or depressed, which can be a result of relationship pain. Your relationship can affect every other part of your life, making it difficult to function with ease or enjoy the present moment. You may be feeling helpless and unsure of what to do.
Many partners are resistant to couples counseling, even when the relationship is in turmoil.
Many couples face challenges, and it is very common that one partner does not want to attend counseling.
This does not mean your partner doesn’t love or care about you. Many people feel they can work out their own problems, or they believe that your relationship will improve on its own. In fact, research shows that couples often wait at least six years before they seeking help. However, what I know for sure is that relationship problems do not just “get better” in time or pass without effort and work. Ideally, I would like to have both partners come in for couples counseling. However, I have successfully helped many relationships improve by working with just one partner. Some call it couples counseling for one. I prefer to call it Individual Relationship Counseling.
Individual Relationship Counseling Can Help You Develop Problem-Solving Skills.
A relationship starts with one person (you)! Research studies have shown that individual relationship counseling – therapy with just one member of a couple – has shown as much relationship improvement as when both partners go to couples counseling together.
I believe you can improve your relationship by becoming more aware of what you need and what your partner needs and then making adjustments to how you interpret and respond in your interactions. With guidance, you can gain a better understanding of your role in your interactions with your partner. Through this new understanding, you will be able to change the way you talk to your partner so you can get your needs met and feelings validated.
During individual relationship counseling sessions, you actually have the opportunity to improve your relationship without struggling to get your partner to change.
Our work together will give you a clear perspective on your relationship, which will help you connect more fully with your partner. It will not be easy. Together, we will take a good, deep look at your role in your interactions with your partner. You will probably have to make some changes in your role in your relationship dance. But, by changing your perception and your behavior, you can make positive changes in your relationship. After seeing and experiencing your positive changes, your partner may even want to join in and come to counseling. We can then transition to couples counseling, and I can work with the both of you to create the relationship you both want.
If you are feeling disconnected and wanting to more out of your relationship, I can help you better understand your current communication patterns, identify improvement areas and guide you through change. Through our work together, we will explore what you are missing that you need from your relationship. You can have the fulfilling, satisfying and joyful relationship that you crave.
You may still be unsure whether individual relationship counseling can help your relationship. You may have some concerns such as:
What if the real problem in the relationship is my partner? How will our relationship improve if I only come into individual relationship counseling?
Every couple in turmoil has a negative relationship pattern that repeats itself over and over without resolution. It makes you both turn away from your partner instead of turning toward each other. I believe this negative “dance” or pattern is the problem, not you or your partner individually. By you focusing on how you can respond differently in the dance, you can improve your relationship.
If I try individual relationship counseling, does that mean I am more likely to divorced?
No, it does not at all. If you wanted a divorce, you would be contacting an attorney, not a marriage counselor. The fact that you are looking into couples counseling means that you are looking for solutions, even if you are feeling hopeless and hopeless about your relationship. That is a good sign, because it means you want to work on your relationship and make changes for the better.
Therapy costs time and money. Will it be worth it?
Yes, therapy is an investment. You are investing in yourself to have a better relationship. You will begin to feel relief just by talking to someone who understands and validates what you are feeling and thinking. You may talk to your friends or family, but they may not always have the best advice or support you in the way that you need. And, friends and family members are more likely to be biased to one partner or the other. With me, you will be able to talk openly and freely in a safe and comfortable environment. I will support and guide you to make the changes you want in your relationship. We will continuously check in to make sure your therapy experience is working for you.
I am looking forward to hearing your story. You don’t have to go through this alone. You deserve to be happy and to have the relationship you want and need. It is possible, and there is hope.
If you're struggling in your relationship or challenged by depression or anxiety, feel free to contact me, so we can discuss how I might be best able to help you move forward and lead you to the rich, fulfilling life you deserve. It's your time to feel better!