- At October 23, 2014
- By Allan
- In Acceptance and Commitment therapy (ACT) in Marriage counseling & couples therapy, Conflict, Dialectical behavior therapy in couples counseling and marriage therapy, Difficult Emotions, Emotionally focused therapy (EFT) with Couples, Empathy and Vulnerability, Healing after an Affair, NEW BABY - NEW PARENTS, Relationship physiology
Some interesting thoughts on making a relationship and marriage last in this article in Men’s Health magazine
Worth a look…
We’re increasingly swamped with screens, information, technology and busyness. And with more speed and busyness, its all too easy to lose touch with ourselves and each other. In a very real sense, we were given all this technology without a manual on how to manage the impact on our lives.
Sometimes deep joy and contentment is found more in quiet and still places. The kind of settling down that happens away from screens and technology.
This is a wonderful article and well worth a look….
- At July 08, 2013
- By Allan
- In Acceptance and Commitment therapy (ACT) in Marriage counseling & couples therapy, Conflict, Dialectical behavior therapy in couples counseling and marriage therapy, Difficult Emotions, Emotionally focused therapy (EFT) with Couples, Empathy and Vulnerability, NEW BABY - NEW PARENTS
Our brains love and crave the familiar.
We so easily slip into automatic pilot, habitual ways of looking and making sense and reacting to our experience. Once in a while, we actually show up to the present … And before we know it, we’ve lived a life and barely shown up for it at all.
I’m not sure that any marriage or relationship can be or for that matter should be “Baby – Proofed” , whatever this means.
I do think that resilience in relationships and marriages is the most important factor. Strengthening your relationship and marriage before the baby’s arrival is the key.
Having said all this, no matter what you do, the arrival of a new baby has an enormous impact on the marriage and relationship – flexibility and resiliance make the challenges that much easier to work with.
This article is worth a read – some very useful pointers.
There’s a lot of talk these days about “Work – Life” balance – the idea that work and the rest of one’s life need to be in balance for optimal well-being.
In his book “The three marriages”, David Whyte, best selling author, poet, and speaker talks about three crucial relationships, or marriages, in our lives: the marriage or partnership with a significant other, the commitment we have to our work, and the vows, spoken or unspoken, we make to an inner, constantly developing and always growing self.
In The Three Marriages, Whyte argues that it is not possible to sacrifice one relationship for the others without causing deep psychological damage. Too often, he says, we fracture our lives and split our energies foolishly, so that one or more of these marriages is sacrificed and may wither and die, in the process impoverishing them all. We give up our connection to self and marriage as we lose touch, drowning in over-work. Or we lose what we desperately long for in a marriage, connection to our partner as one becomes lost in self-absorption.
Whyte provides us with different way of seeing and connecting these relationships and prompts us to examine each marriage with a fierce but affectionate eye as he shows us the importance of cherishing all three equally.
An exceptional book – well worth a read and hugely relevant to a thriving couples relationships and marriage.
“I remember being so tired that I would fall asleep in the middle of the day, at the office, in the playground, wherever.”
“We seem to have drifted apart since Sara was born… we just don’t connect like we used to.”
“I don’t know how to deal with the tiredness and irritability.. we seem to be exhausted all the time and at each other non-stop”
“We really find it hard to find time for each other – its like our relationship hardly exists any more – except for being there for the kids. Its a drag.”
“I miss the warmth and affection… I mean, the baby seems to get it all… and we hardly touch each other anymore..”
“This is much more challenging than I ever expected.. I think we really need support and skills..”
The pressures and stressors which impact on a relationship with a new baby are significant, amplified in no small part by the relentlessness of the work. Simply put: there is no break. So the demands of a new baby really impacts on a relationship in powerful ways and its quite natural for couples and relationships to feel overwhelmed as well as emotionally drained.
The good news: there are solid, evidence-based approaches which can dramatically alter the climate of your relationship.
Couples and relationship therapy using Acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), Mindfulness approaches and Gottman Couples therapy can transform your relationship in powerful ways.
* It’s not unusual that what was once an established and orderly daily routine gets turned upside down.
* It’s not unusual that it seems like all the energy and attention goes to the baby (and children) leaving our relationship behind.
* It’s not unusual that we seem to bicker and argue a whole lot more.
* It’s not unusual that we hardly have time for ourselves, let alone the relationship.
* It’s not unusual that we seem to lose touch with friends and family.
* It’s not unusual that we are more critical and harsh with each other.
But all is not lost. A core element in marriage and relationship counseling focuses on building a climate of friendship and appreciation and reducing levels of unproductive, energy-draining stress. This means using effective couples therapy approaches to re-establish affection and caring and tenderness. Toopen ourselves to the possibilty of transforming and recovering a relationship worth having.
It’s as if we need to have fertile soil for the tree to grow. Commitment to the values which we share – and the actions which support these values like respect, affection, commitment, caring – are the soil out of which friendship grows. So a vital aspect of Gottman Marriage and relationship counseling, Acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), and Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) focuses on developing and optimal relationship climate which allow the affection and caring to grow and develop.
The pressures and stressors which impact on a relationship with a new baby are significant, amplified in no small part by the relentlessness of the work. There is no doubt about it, the stronger the friendship, the more we can work with conflict and differences. And the easier it becomes to repair the relationship after skirmishes or misunderstandings. Couples and relationship therapy using research-based approaches such as Gottman Couples therapy, Acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) and Dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT) can provide a powerful framework for transforming, repairing and healing relationships.