The simple answer to this question is yes because I see it every day. Couples without knowing are creating a dynamic that is shutting down their connection. These couples do have the ability to learn how to create a dynamic that keeps their emotional connection alive if they want to.
When couples come to see me, my mission is to help them understand if they have the ability to create a dynamic that works for them both.
IMPORTANT: I’m not trying to fix them. I’m helping them create the knowledge they need to be able to make good decisions for themselves and their families.
You see the biggest problem people face is if you “think” you understand your problem and you leave your relationship and you’re wrong! The real problem is likely to appear in the next relationship so please understand why you’re having problems before you leap.
So many clients I see are shocked to learn they have been running the same problem for years.
When couples go through this process with me, they discover new ways of understanding and thinking about their relationship. These are unique ways they would never have considered before that help them see their problems in solvable terms.
The most consistent message I receive is “…this process is enlightening”.
This is because when they first meet each other, they are blind to why their dynamic is working, and so they go through years of life together unaware of what is really happening in their own marriage and for many, their connection is being eroded.
Of course, life is busy, kids, careers worries and they don’t stop to consider what is it we don’t know that could hurt our relationship or be hurting it right now?
After learning this very lesson myself, I now have a philosophy for life that says “it’s what you don’t know will hurt you most”!
Very few people are asking questions that will lead them to marital happiness – they are more likely as trouble starts to listen to their fear/survival systems which only have two jobs fight or run.
One of the sad realities that I see a lot of is people would rather live a life of unhappiness than uncertainty so they put up with a failing marriage taking action far too late – most couples should have come to see me 5 years before and there is an argument they should have come the day after they married.
To everyone reading this: Relationships are not difficult to get right once you understand them. BUT not understanding them means a path of pain and suffering which can be easily avoided.
In a relationship, it’s so important to wake up to the fact that you know something isn’t working in your marriage and find out why – TODAY!!!
My clients come to me with a question “…we are in trouble we are stuck tell us what to do”.
One of the many reasons I offer an educational service for couples in crisis is because in my twenties I was reluctantly dragged to a couple’s councillor with my ex-partner, and I was disappointed with the help.
We spoke a lot about our feelings and our situation, but it dawned on me this very nice lady was offering us no direction or understanding.
She was not telling us what to do, and this was such a source of frustration as we never entered into any solution based model.
Couples who enter crisis don’t have time to get their next step wrong. They have a window of opportunity to learn if their thinking is going to take them in a safe direction for them.
Look at some recent clients who were lost:
1. A couple suffered from a powerful emotional breakdown but at different times. A loss of a close family member shut down emotions in him to the point there were no consequences to an affair that lasted 18 months.
Leaving his wife and moving in with his affair partner was powerful enough to start to wake him up to his reality. He came to me for a sanity check, shocked to learn he was about to make the biggest mistake of his life.
He has been working hard to rebuild his wife’s’ trust. Together they learnt why this happened and what they can both do to protect their relationship moving forward.
2. One lady is learning on her own why she stayed so long in a relationship heading for trouble and what red flags came up in her marriage, and she totally missed them.
So she suffered for years.
Now she is learning how to choose the right person for her and how to help him be successful with her so they can become a team. She is also learning how she can be valuable to her new partner and build a future they can both be excited with.
She was always shocked at how much she didn’t know about what it takes to really get it right.
3. One gentleman is learning how to interpret his wife words and actions. He had to stop becoming a mirror to her emotions.
This was a critically important skill to learn because she was never able to have emotions without him making her emotions about him.
The result is she shut down, and this loss of openness naturally killed their connection and intimacy.
4. Another couple learnt that his wife was so emotionally stuck that no matter what he did, he could never win with her. She was stuck for a good reason as he broke her trust over a few years, but her emotional position would end up leading them to the end of the relationship, and she didn’t want this.
She wanted the marriage to work, but she wasn’t in love.
My mission was to help him understand the behaviours that were keeping her stuck and help her understand the importance of reconnection to her true self.
Her emotional system was blocking her from being her true self with her husband.
The job was to reconnect her to an identity within her that could love him again. She knew her husband was following my instructions; she did feel better with him, so she now felt safe to make this critical shift that would save their marriage from divorce.
5. One gentleman in his 40’s four kids discovered this week why he was confused about his marriage and whether he should stay or go.
There was no question he was unhappy, and he could have left her. But he discovered that he didn’t know how to influence his wife to be happy this was a significant source of pain for him – he was failing!
The result of this failure was he gravitated to meet his needs at his work and through his social life.
By learning how to be a safe, powerful masculine leader of his wife and family this man has now the potential to free her to be who she really needs to be, and this is where he can help her see him differently.
6. After infidelity and addiction, this couple knew why their love had died, and this knowledge helped them to make significant changes that helped them reconnect.
They were only left with how to rebuild their sexual connection.
They were unaware of the thoughts that were blocking their ability to be sexually free with each other. This small shift of thought is powerful enough to reconnect them but difficult for them to see.
Such an important part of their healing/connection and life together.
7. Another gentleman is learning why his wife was asking to leave him. The job is to help this man grow his knowledge of her emotions so he can connect to her successfully – she felt alone, almost an outsider in her own marriage.
In their couples session, I helped her understand why she was in this place emotionally. This knowledge helped her see there was a definitive path to her happiness.
She now has the certainty that by the end of the process, her husband would have the knowledge he needed to connect to her.
So if he did or didn’t would now be his choice and a clear message to her and what she should do.
Helping couples out of their crisis has a very defined structure. When couples can see this structure, they then have the confidence to protect the marriage in their future together.
Understanding this structure of what keeps the relationship safe, passionate and connected is a huge comfort to those who are lost and in need of a safe life direction.