Many people who come to me for relationship help have looked to me because they are stuck in some kind of pattern. They want to change something, but they don’t know how to start. These patterns can be present in intimate partnerships, familial relationships, friendships, and collegial relationships.
Difficulty finding the right partner
This is an incredibly common experience for both men and women. It feels burdensome and frustrating to continue the same cycle. You put yourself out there, meet someone, start a relationship with this person, feel the hope, experience waning feelings of love, wonder why it’s not working with this person either (Is it me? Is it them? Both?!), experience guilt or shame about it, break up (more guilt and shame), and think about trying someone new… just to go through the whole pattern all over. It’s easy to feel increasingly dissatisfied, lonely, and hopeless when you repeat this cycle. I can help you figure out who you’re attracted to (and why), what you want (and why), why you’re not getting what and who you want, and what you can do to produce a satisfying outcome.
Intense arguing or yelling
It’s hard to think clearly and skillfully make decisions when tension is high. The conversation might start out calm enough, but at some point, something gets triggered, defense takes over, passive aggressive statements (or blatantly offensive comments) are being made and now you’re arguing, maybe yelling. This takes a toll on any relationship. It can be hard to feel the desired closeness to someone when one or both of you is on guard for the next showdown.
Lack of trust
Trust is an essential piece of the foundation for an intimate relationship. Whether you feel that the trust in your relationship has been actively destroyed, or you are having trouble building primary, foundational trust, this is a scary place to be. As we discuss the nature of why and how it came to be that the level of trust is at its current state in your relationship, we will explore ways to resolve and increase understanding of what each of you needs in the relationship. It might feel like your relationship cannot survive this kind of an impasse; in fact, relationships can be much stronger than any wound.
The presence of jealousy hurts a lot of relationships, not just intimate partnerships. We will look at the type and purpose of the jealousy in the relationship, origins, how it impacts you and your relationship, and how to extinguish it.
This topic can be a little bit tricky for couples. It can bring up past issues that, until now, seemed resolved. The parents I see find it useful to get objective third-party guidance that helps them establish a comfortable way of co-parenting instead of running two completely different households at any given time or one parent setting/enforcing all of the rules and the other sitting in silence.
Unfulfilling sexual relationship
An unfulfilling sexual relationship can be a symptom of any of the things mentioned above. If one or any members are not feeling safe, if one does not trust another, if there is chronic discord, or if you’re not honest with yourself (or your partner) it can show up in many aspects of your relationships, including your sex life. Many of my clients tell me that they have a difficult time broaching this subject with one another and that they can’t imagine feeling comfortable talking about it with a professional. It’s understandable; if it doesn’t feel safe to discuss something with someone you identify as an intimate partner(s), why should it feel safe to talk about it with anyone else? Those who come to see me make incredible progress and begin to enjoy satisfying, healthy sexual relationships.
Sex + Intimacy
Two different things, both important for healthy and satisfying relationships with our partners and with ourselves. Many people want more sex and intimacy in their relationship but are confused about how to get there. They are afraid of exploring this with their partners, or fearful of what they think increased intimacy or a change in a sexual relationship might mean. The result of inaction is one or more partners remain dissatisfied, and they begin to settle for less than what their relationship can realistically provide them. Some members of the relationship may begin to secretly look outside their current relationship to fill something that feels like it’s missing. Others shut down, stop hoping for a change in their relationship, grow resentful, disconnected, or both.
We long for better sex and increased intimacy but then we don’t know what to do with that longing. We’re exhausted from the daily grind of work, family, and all of our commitments and sometimes, it’s all we can do to share a quick hug and a kiss before launching into our laundry list of what the day has brought us (if we even talk at all).
It doesn’t have to be like this. I will help you find your way to a more satisfying, fortified relationship, increased intimacy, and better sex.