I had an interesting session recently. I had been working with this couple, and I felt we had made progress, but the last session I wondered if we had. They were very mad or disappointed or cut off from the each other. But these feelings didn’t prevent them from telling the other what they felt.
We Can Feel Overwhelmed and Lose Perspective When We Fight
It went back and forth and I ended up putting my head in my hands and wondering aloud if I was helping them at all. That’s when one of them got up and said, “It’s not helping, and I am going to leave.”
With that the individual got up and started moving toward the door. I said, “I don’t want you to go.” And then I spoke for the mate and said, “Your partner does not want you to go either. Please come back and sit with us. You matter. Please don’t go.”
Eventually the individual sat back down and we began again, only now we were all in the same boat. We all wanted to be in the room even though we didn’t know what would happen.
Disconnection Hurts All of Us
Somewhere in this space I talked about how they had been treating each other for the past week, both felt like the other was mad and being mean and uncaring. I just talked about how sad it made me feel that here are two people who care very much about each other and neither knew what to do when their feelings got hurt.
I even think at one point I said something like, “What if this was your last week on earth? Please remember that you love each other, and you love each other more than you want to be disconnected.”
Our disconnection hurts not only us, but our partners. And we go to those familiar stories in our heads that tell us we are not thought of well by the other. Each of us have our own version of this.
And yet, many, many couples stay in disconnection for such a long time that too can become a habit. A difficult one, but a habit indeed. When feelings get hurt, then you just turn away and stay in the hurt feelings.
It Takes Two to Mend Problems
Although this is very common with couples, I implore you to think about this differently. Who is it up to, to mend the difficulty? Is it you? Is it your mate? It is both of you. You both want to live happy and free and loving with each other.
Do your part to make it good. Why not? It doesn’t matter if you didn’t learn this, learn it now. When there is trouble between you and your partner, just fix the trouble. That way you get back to the love that lives inside both of you.
Like that couple I worked with. They ended up talking about a weekend away together before the session ended, and that was something they both wanted.
Find Your Way Back to the Love You Share
Read a Book About Relationships
If you’d like help improving communication in your relationship, try reading Linda’s book Safe. Happy. Loved. Simple Skills for Your Relationship. It might just help you develop a gentler approach that helps the two of you reduce conflict and feel more loved. Give it a read.
Get Couples Counseling
Come in for couples counseling. Couples counseling can help you and your loved one get the most out of your relationship. It'll equip you with coping strategies and tools for communication that can help you argue less and love more.