Posted on April 28th, 2019, 11:57
Are you still on the fence about going to couples therapy with your partner? Perhaps you are concerned about what you may have to miss or sacrifice in order to commit consistent time to counseling. You could have to skip coffee dates or girls nights with your friends, miss out on getting drinks with your coworkers at the end of the day, or not be able to make it to your nephew’s Christmas play. It might seem like you’re letting a lot of people down in order to focus on your relationship with just one person.
But you have to remember that your relationship with your partner is the primary and paramount relationship in your life. When you two are having a rough time, other aspects of your life are likely to struggle as well. Likewise, when you two are on the same page and doing well, the other relationships in your life will be more successful as well.
If you have children, they are the first people impacted by the health of your relationship with your partner. They see you at your best and your worst. They are more intuitive than you may give them credit for, and they are learning from you how relationships are supposed to work as they grow up.
Perhaps differences in parenting styles and preferences have contributed to the issues between you and your partner. This will likely be a topic of discussion during your couples therapy sessions, and you may even be assigned parenting “homework” assignments by your therapist. Through therapy, you can learn how to communicate better with each other and with your children. They will undoubtedly be some of the first to notice any changes in your relationship as a couple and as a family.
Your Extended Family
Since your family members are basically built-in friends with a vested interest in your life, you may have talked (or complained) to them about your partner for years now. You may think that they can understand better than anyone else and they will take your side, which can make for some complicated dynamics at family gatherings. Hopefully, they will be your biggest supporters as you begin couples counseling, but consider that it may be best for your relationship with your partner that you not share too many details about your counseling with your family members.
The goal of couples therapy is to provide you and your partner with the skills and tools to communicate with each other better, share common values, and live a harmonious life together. When you two start to be more on the same page, your family members will take notice and see the impact that therapy has had on you. They may decide to follow your lead and pursue healthier relationships with their partners through counseling as well.
Your Coworkers and Boss
Undoubtedly, your home life stresses have made a way into your work life. This could be manifested in missed deadlines, admonition from your supervisor, extreme emotional outbursts, or discussing your relationship problems with your coworkers. In any of these instances, the result is decreased productivity, which will lead to problems with your company at some point. These home and work stresses begin to compound and take a toll on your body, perhaps resulting in having to take more sick or personal leave days as well.
When your relationship with your partner begins to pick up and get back on track, you will not be bringing as many home stresses into the work environment. This will help your productivity and focus, resulting in more positive conversations with your boss and coworkers. Since you spend almost the same amount of time every day at work and home, your relationships in both places tend to feed off of each other, and a rising tide lifts all boats.
Your Mutual and Individual Friends
If you haven’t been out with your other couple friends in a while because of your strained relationship with your partner, your friends have likely noticed. If you and your partner aren’t having fun together, it is hard to go places together and enjoy yourselves. Perhaps the women and men have been getting together separately or you just haven’t seen anyone lately. Even if you haven’t talked to your friends about your relationship with your partner, they probably wonder if something is going on.
Your friends will be supportive of you and your partner working on your relationship through couples therapy, and they will be grateful to be able to spend more time with you once you and your partner have started healing. When you aren’t having to worry so much about your relationship with your partner and how they are feeling towards you, you have more energy to commit to your other relationships, and being in community is very healthy.
At Novus Mindful Life Institute, we believe that everyone deserves to live a healthy and fulfilling life. We are dedicated to helping one person, one couple, one family at a time heal through counseling. We are located in Long Beach, CA, but we also have a wealth of online resources, and we host The Addicted Mind podcast with many guests that are well-known in the industry.