Many relationship problems are due to:

  1. Miscommunication such as:
    • Ineffective communication styles of attack or blame
    • Trying to mold the other person to be someone they are not
    • Inability to tolerate frustration which is to cope with expectations and needs that are not met
  2. Unclear boundaries and an inability to compromise or to say ‘no’.
  3. Your patterns of resolving or handling conflict; how you express warmth or nurture each other, how you laugh together, and how you handle change.
  4. The inability to be your authentic self with your needs and expecting others to read your mind; fear of rejection or shame.
  5. Unexpressed feelings such as anxiety or hurt, which may be expressed as indignant and self-righteous attacks. Others are often not aware that you are feeling something else that is unpleasant when you cover it up with ineffective communication styles. This is what it is to be stuck in a vicious circle.

Couples Therapy Description:

  • Recognize what interferes with authentic connecting with others and learn new techniques for relating: more effective communication. Enhance communication, make better contact with others, and deal with areas needing growth. Identify and work with unresolved experiences as they emerge.
  • Learn constructive communication such as taking responsibility for your feelings and thoughts, rather than by avoiding, attacking or using other ineffective styles.
  • Discover how you can be most successful by having others on your side rather than alienating them and creating enemies.
  • Recognize negative or unreasonable expectations of others so they don’t get in the way of forming positive relationships. See your partner as they really are and not what you would like them to be. Negotiate together to make compromises and changes that are possible; work to accept what is not possible.
  • Face your obstacles and fears with compassion. If you are more alone than you want to be, discover what prevents you from having relationships you’ve longed for.
  • Often during difficult experiences, it is hard to express what you are really feeling. It often comes out as a righteous or moral attack on others, or to shame oneself. These are the most valuable lessons to work on inside. Ideally, therapy will provide you with many realizations and a working knowledge of how to have constructive communication by taking responsibility for your feelings.
  • It is very important to check out with another person to gather factual information when you are anticipating/predicting a negative response. You may find that what you anticipate is not what you thought it would be. This is where growth can occur.
  • Often we carry our familiar methods of interacting with others that don’t serve us well anymore. You may have needed these to survive in the past, but they may no longer be useful. Hopefully, this coaching can provide you with new ways of inter-relating during these difficult moments.