People often have unfulfilling relationships that are dominated by conflict or disconnection. We live and work with people every day and often our relationships are lacking in some way. You may have difficulty with your romantic partner, a family member, friends, or coworkers. All relationships go through periods of difficulty and it’s very common for the ups and downs to be painful. Most of us would like fewer downs and longer ups in our relationships.
Relationships of all types are important for our happiness. As adults, usually our most important relationship is with our romantic partner. This may be a husband, wife, boyfriend, girlfriend, domestic partner, or significant other. These partnerships usually start off with passion, optimism, and friendship. But the stress of everyday life and conflicts, both internal and outside the relationship, can erode the friendship and connection and turn what was a source of support into a source of strife, hurt feelings, and isolation. When the state of our relationship is not healthy, this can cause anxiety in one or both partners, often leading to withdrawal and loneliness. There is very little worse than being lonely in a relationship. All relationships can get difficult at times but it is our attachment patterns that influence how we respond to relationship problems.
We tend to spend most of our time outside work with our romantic partners. We often rely on them for practical things as well as emotional needs and to fulfill our sexual desires. But often romantic relationships fall short from our hopes and desires. What might start off hopeful and exciting can become boring and commonplace. Often relationships can get stuck with each person wanting something different. Perhaps you want change and your partner wants things to stay the same.
Others struggle with finding a romantic partner. You may be dealing with the pain of a recent divorce, unable to move past the difficult memories. You may be trying to date, but unable to meet people that you feel a spark with. Online dating offers the opportunity to meet people, but too often not the right ones. Dating can be unpredictable and scary, with most people you meet in person very different from the person they claim to be in their profile.
You may worry whether you will ever find someone compatible who you can feel a romantic connection with. First dates are very anxiety-provoking and it’s hard to have the confidence to deal with these difficult feelings and persevere long enough to find the right person. The loneliness, longing, and anxiety that are a part of dating can be almost unbearable at times and it’s hard to stay in the dating game without the assurance of a happy ending.
We often have beliefs and patterns that hold us back until we become aware of them. Therapy can help you understand your relationship patterns and how they developed, which then will open up new possibilities for you. But therapy is about more than just insights. It is also about feeling the feelings as well as knowing the facts. By experiencing the emotions, the past can be healed and the present can be lived more fully and enjoyably.
By having a deeper experience of the past and seeing how your history affects the present, you can develop a greater emotional range and an increased capacity for intimacy that will enable stronger relationships in the future.
Please contact me with any questions or to set up an initial consultation.