Unless you have learnt how to understand and fill up your partner with what they really need you simply can’t leave that relationship safe in the knowledge you have done all you can.
So it’s critical for people who are struggling in an unhappy relationship to really understand the complexity of why they are in trouble before they put themselves and their family through painful changes.
One lady came to me after running the same destructive pattern in 3 long-term relationships without knowing.
She was now 57 and about to give up on love until she learnt her behavioural patterns were never going to meet her own needs and would stop her meeting any man’s needs.
She was shocked and stunned at such a waste of her life and really sad she probably should have stayed with her first husband who she had 2 children with.
People whose needs are not met will naturally move towards what will meet their core needs and for many, they do this without thought so they are blind to what’s really happening to them.
For some people who are not getting what they need in their relationship, they will gravitate to meeting their needs through their work or kids and for some that can be someone new.
When someone feels stuck in a marriage that’s not meeting their needs they will be backed into a corner to meet their own critical needs the only way they know how and this can look to their partner like withdrawal, criticism or controlling behaviours to name a few destructive patterns.
Essentially unhappy people in relationships are people who have lost the connection they need with themselves and their partner so they feel they can’t stay in that relationship for life.
In contrast, happy people essentially love how they feel about themselves when they are with their partner and unhappy people are in a needs deficit and naturally won’t feel happy.
My point in today’s post is a needs deficit which is one of the problems at the root of so many couples struggles and can be easily be solved once you know how.
What’s interesting about understanding needs is many people don’t know how to communicate what they need or they communicate the wrong information.
Look at this example: How many men in crisis suddenly become more domesticated to help her around the home hoping this will help her fall back in love with him.
Just so you know this will save her time but will not reconnect her to who she needs to be to fall back in love him again.
One couple came in and both didn’t know that meeting their partners’ needs was something they should have been doing.
I sit in session after session helping individuals understand what they really need and then show them how to communicate those needs to their partner so they understand them.
The model I keep seeing is people are unhappy their needs are not met and they really have no idea what their needs really are but are quick to be upset if they are not met.
One gentleman came to see me absolutely convinced he should leave his wife. I could see he was a great guy but very lost and about to make a terrible mistake.
I told him “You can’t leave your wife until you know this”
When he learnt how much pain his wife had been in by understanding her core needs had not been met by him his resentment turned into empathy and this gave us a platform to help them reconnect.
My clients learn how to make a very complex situation simple to understand and fix, but there is always a strategy and a plan.
I love working with people who are passionate to gain the simple solutions to what they are seeing is complex and impossible problems.
I don’t believe everyone should be fixed, but I do believe couples have a duty to themselves and their family to really understand their real relationship problems to maximise their chance of staying together to build a win-win dynamic.