A lady was just starting her session with me, but she looked distracted, so I enquired what was going on.
She apologised and said she just had an argument with her husband; she apologised again and asked to move on with the session, saying she would be fine.
I said no, we are going to discuss what’s just happened because it’s clear it stopped you being you.
This part of losing ourselves in relationships that don’t work is important to understand, as so many people fall foul of this hidden problem.
So I asked her what happened.
She told me she came downstairs, and her husband looked so miserable.
So I asked her what she did, and she said she got angry with him about being miserable.
And a heated argument followed.
So, I asked her what she would see if she watched herself in that interaction.
Would she look miserable, too?
She nervously half laughed.
I explained that the solution to an unhappy energy in another human tends not to be a stacking of more unhappy energies.
She asked, “…so what am I supposed to do?”
I then explained that you cannot have anger at someone and understand them at the same time.
So, if I watched you in that situation, instead of becoming curious about why he was miserable, you became his judge.
And judging isn’t loving at all!
So, are you a loving person? I asked.
Yes, of course. I’d like to think so, she replied.
Are you aware when you volunteered to stop becoming what you say is important (loving), you are actively hurting yourself?
Your challenge is you will feel pain in the moment and connect it to his behaviour. What you are not seeing is the pain you feel is directly connected to you not being who you are, which is loving and caring.
She told me she could see what I was saying, but it would be hard to change.
I told her that I see what she is doing is much harder because, in the end, the pattern they were in would end their marriage and hurt their children for years to come.
All that could be avoided if she stopped being the mirror; she alone could single-handedly save her whole family from that pain.
You must choose emotions that are reflective of who you are, you must bring energies to him that would be good for him, and you must look after the future of the marriage you promised to love and protect.
If you keep being the mirror of him, you are now part of the problem.
Many couples practice the mirror effect: whatever you do to me, I’ll do to you, but it’s like watching children slapping each other in the playground.
The problem I keep seeing is perfectly good relationships are on a divorce path for the wrong reasons, like this couple.
Couples need to learn how to change the old emotional patterns to new empowered behaviours.
All they need is a new understanding and the tools to breakthrough their current destructive thinking.
After nearly two decades of putting couples back on track, I have amassed plenty of tools to share for those ready to learn how to create a better life together.