Couple relationships can be hard. The person who once felt like your best friend and lover, now seems more like a stranger, a roommate, or even an adversary.
Has it gotten lonely in your relationship?
Do you keep having the same fight over and over?
Are you sick of trying to get through to him?
Do you feel cornered, attacked or unable to do anything right for her?
The way out of relationship issues starts with each of you learning how you move and react to the other. Perhaps you reach, pressure, or criticize in an effort to regain connection. Maybe you defend, shy away, avoid or deflect in order to stay out of the terrible “no win” of conflict. At the same time, it gets and harder to regain or even remember the original emotional bond that you once shared.
Northern Illinois Men's Counseling can help couples break the repeating cycle of conflict and rebuild a secure and loving connection.
How couples communicate – in more ways than just words - is often the trigger for conflict and disconnection. Tone of voice, a look, a shrug of shoulders, rolling eyes or turning away can disrupt and breakdown communication, escalating the conflict and making matters worse. The goal is to identify and learn to express what is really going on inside, in a way that the message sent by both words and actions is authentic, loving and likely to draw your partner closer and help the two of you come out of the conflict better than you were before.
Cycle of Conflict
Most couples have a fairly predictable pattern of negative interactions that gets triggered in conflict. You may even be able to write the script of the next argument in advance. One of you complains, asks for something, criticizes or snaps impatiently. The other reacts with defensiveness, or avoidance, or even angry counter-attack. Sometimes one or both feels they are getting nowhere and withdraw in silence, or stomp out of the room slamming doors.
However the pattern goes, it usually comes at the worst possible times when life is complicated and stressful. And when the cycle gets going, it takes over your relationship, escalating seemingly out of control…and you are never able to solve the problem that you started with.
In the midst of this cycle it is nearly impossible to see that each of you actually wants something from the other that may be hard to identify, much less ask for. You may be looking for connection, support, help, reassurance, or just to know you matter. You may want them to know you are hurting and want something to change. But that message is lost.
Northern Illinois Men's Counseling can help couples to slow down and see how the negative pattern works and takes over. With support and guidance, couples can stop the cycle and shift to more authentic and connected interaction that is much more likely to produce closeness, understanding and a resolution to problems.
Recovering from Affairs or Infidelity
Affairs and infidelity, whether physical or emotional, brief or long-term, are devastating to relationships. It is no surprise that many relationships end because of it. But not all of them. In fact, in most cases, both partners want to find a way to repair and renew the relationship but they don’t know how.
Repairing a severe relationship wound like infidelity is possible. As the unfaithful partner steps up with openness, transparency, authentic regret and empathic connection to the pain their choices caused, the one who was betrayed must consider taking the difficult step to trust again, and joining in rebuilding the emotional bond. This is no small step that requires strong but gentle guidance of both partners as they work their way back to co-creating a safe, secure and trustworthy relationship. Northern Illinois Men's Counseling has the experience and expertise to can help couples recover and build a relationship foundation that is stronger than before.
Emotionally Focused Therapy for Couples
Emotionally Focused Therapy for Couples (EFT) is one of the most thoroughly researched, validated and proven effective forms of couple’s therapy. Rooted in attachment theory and focused on changing negative cycles of conflict while regaining emotional bonds, EFT has shown dramatic and long-lasting rates of success in study after study. EFT has been the cornerstone of the couple’s therapy that NIMC provides for many years – because it works.
Is Now the Time?
If you have questions or are ready to make an appointment that can start a process of positive change in your relationship, call, e-mail or make an appointment through the scheduling system on this website.