Couples Counseling Articles

Charlotte

Putting On a Show

I’m not sure it even has a name but the term couples use most often is ‘Putting On a Show.”

When it happens, it’s discouraging and misunderstood.

No one plans to argue in the car, then walk into an event as the ‘Perfect Couple’ and then resume the argument the moment you walk out the door.

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It makes sense that you would want to show your best side to others; neighbors, friends, family and sometimes – perfect strangers.

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Can I Be Sure?

05-24-15ArticleIntimate partners who want to spend a lifetime together usually profess unconditional love.

They long for it too – wanting certainty and affirmative answers to questions like:

  • Are you in?
  • Can I count on you?
  • Will you be there for me when I need you?

Problem is, certainty is binary and requires 100%.

Open / Closed
Up / Down
On / Off
In / Out

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3 Steps To Turning Your Relationship Right Side Up – Again

04-19-15articleAll long-term relationships have challenges and every now and then things can approach a tipping point. That’s a red flag – it’s time to reflect, take action and turn things right side up again.

People rarely want to leave their relationship. Most people want to figure things out. They want to make things better.

People ask; Is this possible? Can this / will this work? And mostly, the answer is YES!

When you’re looking for professional help it’s important to be an informed consumer. Approach the decision together; thoughtfully and collaboratively.

Here are three simple steps to guide you through the process of making a choice that is good for you AND good for your relationship:

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Uh Oh! Here We Go Again

03-08-15ArticleYou know it’s coming. The dreaded argument. Not with anyone but with the person you love the most in the world.

It’s happened before and it’s happening again.

Something’s triggered your internal alarm system.

Maybe it’s the way s/he moves, a tone of voice, a facial expression.

It can be as subtle as a single word.

It’s real. It’s powerful. It feels like a trap. Sometimes it feels like quicksand and you vow not to get sucked in. Not this time.

But before you finish the thought – it touches a raw spot in you the size of Texas.

In one split second everything inside collapses or bubbles up in frustration, confusion and anger.

This moment of vulnerability is in all of us and we will do just about anything to avoid it; ignore, get busy, leave, defend, work late – build walls around our hearts.

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A Relationship Check-Up In Six Questions

happy-couple01-25It’s risky to check-in and reflect on an intimate relationship because when it’s good, it’s very good. You don’t want to rock the boat.

When it’s bad, all you want to do is fix, hide or move on and hope things get better soon.

If you step back for a minute, these six simple questions will provide a panoramic view of your relationship.

What is its purpose and does it guide you?

Love is essential and love is grand yet not enough. A 21st century relationship also needs purpose to survive.

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The New Luxury Item and #1 Status Symbol

In a restaurant the other day I heard a man say, “I love my wife and we don’t have kids but it seems nothing, absolutely nothing could have prepared me for this thing called marriage.” It was a moment of truth and took my breath away.

This Holiday Season, as I watch shoppers, I find myself reflecting on the rarest of gifts; the one thing people want most and money can’t buy:
A long-term, happy, not-perfect-but-relatively stress-free marriage (or long-term committed relationship) where they can feel valued, respected, appreciated and heard.

It sounds simple and perfectly rational, right?

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The Masters, The Disasters and Everyone in Between

key-to-happinessNow and then I reflect on something I heard John Gottmann say.

Gottman is one of the worlds leading researchers on marriage and I’m paraphrasing the man but, in essence, he said:

When it comes to couples and long-term committed relationships, there are the Masters, the Disasters……. and then there’s everyone in between…… brailling their way through.

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What’s Your Relationship Worth?

Most people would never consider assigning a value to their relationship. Just ask. The answer: It’s priceless. happy-coupleC

But make a mess of things, add an eye-roll, some resentment, ignore, criticize, throw in some run-around-crazy-busy-ness, the daily tasks of living and the constant, insistent lure of electronic devices – – it’s remarkably easy to damage something we consider priceless.

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