Feeling Miserable in a Relationship? Here’s What You Can Do

Feeling miserable in a relationship? Here's what to do.

Do you think of yourself as “miserable” in your relationship? It might take you a moment to really think about how you feel most of the time, but if you say “yes,” you are miserable in your relationship. Well, let’s talk.

All of us, at times, feel terrible in our relationship. That just goes along with the nature of getting close to another person. People are complex. You and I included, now add your significant other. We are all so intricately different and unique, it’s no wonder we might get frustrated and upset when we try and get along with them.

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Are You Living with Emotional Pain in Your Relationship?

Living with emotional pain in your relationship?

Everyone who has ever loved another has been hurt by the one they love. There is no relationship in the world that is without pain. It’s just not possible. Now that’s not saying there aren’t people who just don’t fight or get upset. There are probably lots of couples out there that don’t get mad at each other. But that is not the majority of us, and those that NEVER disagree or fight, well I can’t imagine having every thought in my head mirrored perfectly by my mate.

As humans who live close together we are bound to see that we are different than our partner. It is that difference that leads to quarrels and disagreements. Most of us feel very strongly about the way we look at things and the way we like to think. We are attached to our view of the world, including how things should be done in our home.

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How Mood Affects Our Relationships

How Mood Affects Our Relationships

Can you notice how when you are in a bad mood your relationship suffers? This pretty much happens to all of us. I know it happens to me, plenty. I will feel depressed, or anxious or worried about something and then I am in some kind of mood and then no one feels good around me.

I also know that if I am in such a mood, I am usually unaware that I am in a mood in that moment. After the mood passes I can look back and see how my upset feelings really impacted the way I acted. This is good to do, notice yourself after you have had an upset.

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Compromise in Relationships: The Secret Cost of Happiness

Compromise in Relationships: The Secret Cost of Happiness

I have talked about my sleep before. I love my sleep and I want to get as much as I can. I am also a light sleeper, so when my husband breathes or stretches I feel the effects. I have gotten used to his way of sleeping, but lately when I wake up in the middle of the night he apparently wakes too (must be our ages&em;we are getting older).

The new trend is, I try to get back to sleep as soon as possible and I am almost there and then he will move or make a noise and this move or sound wakes me up. I will try again to get back to sleep and I am almost there and then he will make a noise or move and I will wake up again. This has been happening a lot lately.

Here’s what I did.

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What Does Love Feel Like?

What Does Love Feel Like?

It would be helpful if all of us in relationships knew exactly what love is supposed to feel like. If we knew, then we would know if we were in love or if we weren’t. We wouldn’t wonder about it. As a couples specialist I work with a lot of people in relationships who are often not sure about the love they feel.

Some people will be very angry at their mate and tell me all the things the partner does to make them pull their hair out. Then I ask the same person, “Do you think about ending the relationship?” Then they scold me as if I haven’t been listening and then they tell me, “I can’t leave, I love him.”

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Lean on Your Partner to make it Through the Holidays

Lean on your partner to get through the holidays

I don’t know anyone who is not feeling greater stress during this time of year. Even terrific moments with people we love can cause us stress, and that’s if family and extended family are individuals we WANT to see. It’s even more stressful if we are acting out of obligation.

Whatever your circumstances, it’s probably likely there will be at least a few people who drive us up a wall and cause us enormous stress. Welcome to the holidays. Not to mention the numerous details; buying gifts, decorating, baking, cooking sending cards, and trying to be a loving person on top of all that.

I’m stressed just writing about it. Let’s just acknowledge it; Holidays are HARD! And they can be much harder if you turn on the one person who is your rock 90 percent of the time, your partner. Think right now what a good team you make during a crisis. Now ask yourself if you are pulling your hair out and fighting more than usual with your mate?

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Changing Habits: Positive Change in Action

changing habits as a means to personal growth

Changing little habits can make you feel better. The transition may feel strange, but stick with it and you just might be happier for it. Even something small can make a big difference in your day.

Earlier this month I made a minor decision. I decided to do something about my garage door opener placement in my car. I had become uncomfortable with the opener attached to the visor because the visor doesn’t sit flush with the roof of the car when pushed all the way up. The visor would droop a few inches because of the opener. I found myself pushing on the visor when ever I was driving to see if it would stay up. It was starting to drive me mad.

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When Partners Live With Pain

Most people have an amazingly high tolerance for discomfort.  Some of us can even live many years feeling terrible, terrible about our mate and our relationships.  As a couples counselor I am sometimes surprised though, at how much pain a couple will endure before seeking help.

When I see a couple that feels terrible about their marriage or partnership I am always interested in finding out when the problems began.  Sometimes I hear answers like “six years”, six years, imaging feeling terrible about your relationship for six years.  If you are in a happy relationship you might not even be able to imagine it.  But if you have been suffering for a number of years, you are locked in a system of discomfort and it’s possible you may have lost your sense of time.  You may have forgotten about earlier years when the relationship felt better, and you may have resigned yourself to living your current life because that’s “ just the way it is”.

Most people accept “just the way it is” because they don’t know it could be different.  They may wish it was different, but they don’t know what to do to change the circumstances to make life different.  It’s likely both people in the relationship have tried everything they know to make things better, but the efforts fail. When couples get desperate enough, that’s usually the time they come in for counseling.

And when I see a couple at this point the couple is often wondering if I can save or fix the relationship.  I tell them, “I don’t fix relationships, I help you figure out what you want and then I help you get that.  If that is a good relationship than great, I can help you.”

I tell them there is no fix; there is just awareness, intention and action.  Learn about yourself.  Learn about your partner.  Ask for what would make you happy.  Find out how to make your partner happy.  It may sound simple, but for couples who are bruised from living years of unhappiness all these ideas can appear as just words, hollow.

I think the most important thing I can impart to a distressed couple is that there might be another way to relate to one another that could feel better.  And that may be all a couple that’s been in pain for a while can hear.  They might have stopped believing they can even be happy with each other, and they’ve probably accepted their lot in life, one that includes difficulties.

It’s too much for a person in pain to go from discomfort to happy in an instant. But what they might be able to hold on to is the thought that maybe; just maybe they could feel better.  When people start to feel better they become less stressed, less stressed about their problems and the relationship.  Less stress gives the mind a chance to relax and become more welcoming to new thoughts about what may be possible.

Possibilities, ideas, new ways of communicating, hope.  This is what can happen when the mind is relaxed, new ways of thinking and new ways of thinking can lead to a new life.  And isn’t that what distressed couples are after?  Something better, something loving, something hopeful, a new life.

Send your comments to linda@lindanusbaum.com

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Feeling Small

Feeling small.  It’s a condition everyone experiences now and then.  It can occur out of nowhere.  Maybe you are in a conversation and someone talks about something you don’t know anything about.  You might feel small.  Or what about times when someone forgets to include you in something you wanted to be a part of.  You might feel small here too.  Feeling small, it happens.  It happens to all of us.

I think what we’re really feeling though is disconnected from others, disconnected from someone, something or an event.  I think it’s a feeling we get when we are alone and we don’t want to be.  I also think it’s very, very common.  We all feel this “small” feeling at times.

So what do you do about it?  The first thing to do is recognize that it happens and then discover what happens to you.  Get familiar with the feelings inside yourself and start to put words around it.  Maybe it feels like isolation, maybe it feels lonely, perhaps it is sadness, and whatever it is, begin to label it.  What you will be doing is learning about yourself, and your inner world.  These are essential steps to describing what is going on inside yourself.

So why is it important to understand and label what’s happening inside?  First it helps us identify what’s happening with us, so we just don’t feel so terrible.  Second, when we understand what’s going on inside us we can explain it to others. 

So why would you want to describe feelings of loneliness and sadness to anyone, because all these feelings get evoked because you are alone.  You feel disconnected from other people.  If you talk about the feelings, no matter what they are, you will be connecting, which is really what the soul is missing.

I know it’s hard to let people know when you feel these feelings.  These are the kinds of feelings most of us were taught to keep hidden from others.  Many of us were taught to just show happy feelings and hide the hard ones; discomfort, anger, frustration, fear, worry, sadness, guilt, shame.  Few people are taught that these feelings are O.K. to reveal.  Few people feel comfortable saying things like, “I feel angry at you right now,” or “I am full of sadness,” and “I feel guilty about that.”  These are not things that come naturally, but when we can reveal them to others we get rid of the “small” feeling.

When we know what’s happening inside us, when we can identify our feelings, we can then learn how to express them to others.  Usually when we are at this stage we are not yelling, we are calmly explaining what is going on with us.  When others hear what’s happening inside us almost every time they will want to come closer.  A person’s natural instinct is to move toward another when they are describing something vulnerable.  That is what makes us human, our ability to move toward and help others.

So when you experience those times where you just feel left out or “small”, try and remember to turn toward another.  It will lead you toward the connectedness we all crave.

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