For married couples considering divorce, or for never-married couples facing a breakdown in the relationship, there are options to consider before making a final decision. Too many times couples fail to take advantage of the assistance and support offered through a London psychotherapist to help rebuild their relationship and sustain the partnership.
A very common issue with couples that have a breakdown in their relationship is the problem with their ability to communicate. This difference in communication style often becomes apparent when there are challenges and difficulties facing the couple. Often these issues are external triggers for conflict.
Some common causes of external stressors or problems can include:
- The loss of a job by one or both of the partners
- Differences in expectations for finances and personal behaviours
- A pregnancy or the birth of a child
- A move either for a career or in hopes of improving opportunities
- A major purchase such as a home
- Complications with extended family
- The need to care for an aging parent or family member
These are common stressors and often involve one person in the relationship feeling obligated or “forced” into doing something they don’t agree with. If there is a lack of ability to discuss these feelings, the result can be a build-up of resentment, distrust and hurt that can result in pulling away, becoming emotionally or verbally combative or simply “checking out” of the relationship on an emotional basis.
The Big Signs
Once one person in a relationship no longer feels valued, he or she is less likely to stay invested emotionally in the relationship. As one person pulls away, the other partner may naturally try to pull them back, leading to further issues. The person needing space may feel smothered, distrusted, controlled or micromanaged. However, often the person doing the smothering also feels a loss of control over the behaviour, and resents this new role they feel compelled to assume.
The results of these issues often lead to the big signs of the collapse of the relationship. These can include:
- Lies and secrets
- Breakdown in communication on anything but the basics
- Emotional distance
- Lack of physical intimacy
- Extreme resentment
- Feelings of isolation, abandonment and helplessness
The reality is that even when these major issues have occurred, couples can work to rebuild their relationship with the help of a London psychotherapist. This won’t always be easy, but couples need to consider this option if they wish to work towards a reunification.
Learning To Reconnect
In some cases, couples working with a London psychotherapist may discover the need to start over on developing an effective method of communication to go forward with the relationship.
It is possible that the couple has never really talked about how to talk to each other, so when challenges occur, there was no foundation or guidelines in place to have those difficult conversations.
With the support of psychotherapists, couples can learn these communication basics in a safe, supportive and confidential environment. The therapists will work with the couple to develop their own communication style based on their strengths and also on a better understanding of how each other receives and conveys information.
Through this practice, as well as by learning more about themselves as individuals, couples can create a strong yet flexible bond. This allows those challenging conversations, and even provides for the option to have different opinions yet still come to a consensus and agreement about challenging issues.
When there have been breaches of trust, such as lies, secrecy and even infidelity in the relationship, the therapist can help the couple to work through those issues as well. While not easy conversations, couples can and do reconnect and reunify even after these issues, and a London psychotherapist can be instrumental in providing the support needed to move forward together.