Blog 113. Therapy Part C: Why Do Couples Need Relationship Therapy? Why Can’t They Just Talk To A Friend Or Family Member?
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Usually we can’t see our own issues and this is when a trained third party can be very useful – not to judge but to guide a couple so they can understand the issues involved, and how to navigate them better.
Although friends and family may be able to give the odd bit of advice, if the issues are more serious and complex, then they may land up giving the wrong advice and this could lead to further problems down the line.
But also, sharing your partner’s secrets or information about your marriage with others, no matter who they are, is never a good idea. It often lands up leaving you looking silly especially if you decide to stay with your partner after having denigrated or disparaged them.
However, sharing your troubles with others can also create unnecessary concern, or if the issues continue, it may also start to bore others when they constantly have to hear you moan about your so-called dreadful partner.
It is therefore important to adhere to the crucial rule of keeping your private life away from prying eyes. What goes on behind closed doors is nobody else’s business – unless there is abuse and you need help.
Until then, either try to work it our with your partner or if this proves difficult then relationship therapy or whatever else is available in your area, may be an alternative.
This is why a properly trained relationship therapist is valuable as they will be experienced enough to see the issues that are not always obvious to others.
However, some people may not want to tell a stranger their problems. They may fear being vulnerable and they may think people will think there is something wrong with them and that they’ve somehow failed. Others may fear they will be forced to changed when they don’t want to.
Unfortunately all these fears are unnecessary, but sadly society hasn’t helped allay or alleviate them in any way. And therapy is NONE of the above, although it does take courage to look at one self and ‘face one’s demons’, but sadly, not everybody is prepared to do so and this can cause further issues within a couple.
As stated before, Therapy is NOT about change. Rather it is about learning to accept who you are, your behavioural patterns and what makes you tick. It isn’t about change – because you are not a computer and no one can re-install you. You had the childhood you had, with all its flaws and the next step is to learn to accept this. Once this is achieved, then via a new self-awareness you can begin to make better choices to suit who you really are or who you are becoming.
The way I work and I know many others try to do the same, is that we create a space where people can feel comfortable to discuss their issues. But, relationship therapy is more about a couple presenting clues and sorting out all the ‘pieces of their puzzle’. This helps clients understand each piece, so they can re-assemble the pieces, in order to create ‘the picture’ or relationship they will be happy to live with.
Sure, some clues may lead to painful memories or revelations, how we discover these clues leads the couple to more understanding than any vulnerability. It’s more about surprise revelations than crying and tons of raw emotions on display.
However, once a couple begins to understand each other better and also, why they chose one another then they can begin to make better decisions to suit what they both want to achieve.
You can find out more in Blog 114. Therapy Part D: Finding A Therapist, The Therapist, How Weekly Sessions Are Arranged And Paid For, But What If Things Go Wrong?
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