Partnership is the basis for healthy and functional marriages. Yes, there can be love, sex, passion, but without a clear understanding of the basis of the partnership, the marriage will flounder at best, and devolve into regular destructive conflict at worst.
Another possibility is that there is low communication because the couple is avoiding conflict altogether.
Strong partnerships/marriages have healthy communication around “conflict” or disagreement that leads to creative solutions. Low partnership marriages experience breakdown when it comes to resolving differences or misunderstandings.
These marriages are screaming for a Marriage Therapist.
Effective marriage therapists are trained in multiple disciplines. They have structures and systems that build agreement and understanding. They give the couple the tools they need to rebuild partnership in their marriage.
What Is A Marriage Therapist?
An experienced therapist, coach, and/or marriage mediator is trained to recognize where a couple is in their relationship.
They have the knowledge and trolls to help the couple move from “Cats & Dogs” to the creative resolution of difference.
A well-trained family therapist will have a proven system for helping couples move from conflict-avoidance and/or constant conflict to deeper understanding, empathy, and agreement.
They understand that any couple who comes to them has the ability within themselves to resolve their differences, they just need someone who knows the path and has some tools to help them find their way.
Marriage & Disagreement
There are three basic ways that couples manage disagreement:
- Talk through the values that drive what they believe and better understand one another.
- Fight like cats and dogs with little resolution.
- Avoid talking about areas of disagreement.
1- Talk Through
This strategy is the basis of partnership. It is grounded in the understanding that each partner has different angles on the same issue based on their areas of strength and their family experience.
There is a tendency to be respectful, and the first step is to achieve an understanding of the other person’s perspective. It often involves acknowledging the other person and ensuring that they truly understand one another.
The purpose of a well-trained Marriage Therapist is to help couples in the other two categories to get to this space. It is NOT to ensure that they have a marriage that works, but a relationship that works.
Once there is a working relationship, the couple can decide if marriage is part of their new partnership.
2- Fighting Like Cats & Dogs
The fighting like cats and dogs strategy is a time-tested one. What works about this is both sides get to blow off emotional steam at and on one another. Often it’s built up emotional steam from other sources like work, or child management.
The couple “triggers” one another and basically emotes all over each other. The short-term value is the release of anger, the long-term price is the dissolution of trust and intimacy.
This strategy or model is the most insidious. Because the couple is avoiding conflict, they appear as if they are working together.
Indeed they are working together in the sense that why focus on what they do agree on and avoid everything that they don’t. They are often not working together in that they are living parallel lives, usually focused on the kids.
Do I Need A Marriage Therapist?
If you are in a relationship that has regular destructive conflict, you most likely need a marriage therapist.
Destructive conflict occurs when a couple is having the same angry fight over and over. The fight can be about anything from topics as serious as money and the future to leaving the cap off of the toothpaste.
It’s a fight that never gets resolved. It “ends” with both sides remaining angry. Sometimes it may end in angry sex, but don’t be fooled, this is not a resolution of the fight, it is the redirection of anger into another form of expression.
Over time, even sexual release will diminish as both sides get more positioned and blaming.
If you are living parallel lives with almost no disagreement, again your relationship needs some help. You have unconsciously agreed that you both will fulfill your needs elsewhere.
The shared focus is usually on kids and you have the illusion of unity because there is at least this shared area of concern. You tend to do things separately avoiding the possibility of conflict. This seems peaceful enough, but it actually is the slow, painful death of a relationship.
You see, creativity and empathy are actually born out of the expression of disagreement and the desire to meet needs together. There may be emotional infidelity or even physical infidelity.
The Benefits of Marriage Therapy
Marriage therapy does not have to be a long, drawn-out experience. Our system focuses on eight meetings. The goal is to rebuild communication, empathy, and understanding and from that platform, you get to decide what kind of relationship you want.
Benefits our clients have experienced:
- Eight sessions = limited cost.
- They feel heard/listened to.
- Ending the war, whether it’s silent avoidance of regular fighting or regular fights that go now where.
- They finally feel understood.
- Really getting where their partner is coming from.
- Creating common ground and shared values.
- Learning to walk in their partner’s shoes.
- Finally seeing the big picture.
- Learning how to resolve conflict without a professional.
How We Can Help You
Our process does not promise to save your marriage, it promises to restore your relationship. With the restoration of communication, understanding, and empathy, most couples choose to stay together.
Most of our clients say their experience with us laid the groundwork for their new, renewed, and better relationships.
We thrive to create peace in couples, and we´d like to help you get to that place as well.
You can schedule a FREE call with us now. Don´t worry, it won’t take more than thirty minutes of your time, and you’ll leave with personalized next steps on what to do to improve your relationship as fast and as efficiently as you can.