Pinning you down to score points Remember those fights when your partner brought up all the 'nasty' things you said and did, as if they were being read from a score sheet? That's often how loved ones track each others sins of omission and sins of commission. Fired up with indignation and fury when there is tension between you, they mentally read from that score sheet to bury you in one fell swoop, so that they can feel vindicated. Perhaps you do the same thing without knowing it. Maybe you too make mental notes of the things you wanted your partner to do and felt slighted when you were let down. It's likely that you can predict the moment your partner is going to go 'off' on a tirade, bringing up all the garbage from the past to make you feel like the devil incarnate. Ever wondered why you and your partner relate in this way?
Once you were your mother's right arm, her champion and her savior. In return she took care of you by paying for everything you needed, so you didn't have to look for work or a life partner. But now you want to think for yourself. You want your feelings to count, not just those of your mother's. But you are scared that if you show how your mind works differently, that your mother won't like it, and take away your financial cushion. Yet, you want to be free to make your own mistakes. You love your mother and want a connection, but you want to share social moments because it feels good, not because you feel it is expected or that you will be punished if you don't!
Recently a woman brought her male partner into therapy to make him confess to seeing other women, because she 'knew' he was playing around. You can guess how that went down! He felt cornered as if he had been forced into a confessional in the guise of having 'therapy' which is generally considered useful and validating. She felt vindicated that I was seeing the lying side of him, while frustrated that I wasn't browbeating him into admitting what she already 'knew' about his transgressions. I felt like I was being put in the role of a principal of a school with a teacher bringing me a naughty boy to be punished - unwilling to take on that mantle. Couples therapy often fails to take off because the intentions of one or other of the partners is to make the other feel bad. They say they want to work on the relationship but when it comes down to it, the partner that instigated the therapy usually wants to shame, blame and reclaim the control.
How often has money become a deal breaker in your relationship? It happens a lot, doesn't it ! Either you don't agree on how the money should be spent, or who deserves to make the choice. Money is often the heat that inflames a relationship where there is already some tension and power differentials. When one partner gives money to the other, or other people in a unilateral fashion, all sorts of insecurities and stresses build up. Conflict becomes a permanent feature of interactions and the underlying motivations are lost. So here are a few of the hidden motivations behind using money to manage relationships.
Do you know what messages your body language gives your partner? Do you know how to read the signals of defense rather than togetherness? When you are fighting for your point of you, to be made right, and win the battle, then your relationship is in jeopoardy. So alert yourself to the behaviors that stress the "I" part of you, where the couple part is demoted. Then tune into the behaviors that stress the "we" part of the couple so your relationship can survive and thrive.
Emotional closeness in a relationship is the key to a stable, secure and satisfying connection that makes a couple more resilient to the stresses and strains of living together. Here are a few benefits that emotional intimacy can provide for couples over the long term: One of the main benefits of intimacy is that it releases the hormone oxytocin which promotes bonding and solidifies the relationship, boosting optimal health.
Are you locked out of your partner's heart no matter how hard you try to make contact? Do you retaliate by locking them out too? Then you are trapped in a cycle of never connecting and feeling insecure and stressed about the status of your relationship. BUT imagine how different it could be if you discovered the fears that your partner had of letting you in close! WHAT IF you could peek into their inner sanctum and learn how scared they were of you seeing their most private parts? YOU COULD FIND WAYS TO KNOCK ON THE DOOR AND BE WELCOMED IN YOU COULD REDUCE THE FEAR AND GET A FOOTHOLD INTO THEIR SOUL YOU COULD GAIN EMOTIONAL INTIMACY, FEEL WANTED, IMPORTANT, SPECIAL AND TREASURED.
Are you longing to feel like you have a partner that is a good fit and that you are finally settling down, but wonder why you can't commit? Do you find that the person you are attracted to seems inviting and loving, but that you have doubts about whether there is someone out there even more suitable? Then you are caught in a conflict about what attachment and commitment means to you. One part of you is in touch with the comfort, the love and attention, the togetherness and the bliss of feeling close. But another part of you is scared you will have to give up your right to think for yourself and be your own person. So you end up regretting decisions you make to commit because as soon as you do, it's as if you have just given yourself a term of life in jail.
Whenever thirty-six-year-old Danny saw his twenty-nine-year-old partner Liz upset and crying about something he didn’t do, or something expectation he hadn’t met, he would start to feel guilty and ashamed and obey her demands for an apology. He wanted her to stop crying and rescue him from the guilt and shame. He wasn’t really interested in her feelings and how she interpreted his behavior. Each time he apologized she got more angry and would either shut down or berate him even more. Danny floundered, not knowing what to do next or how to keep their connection intact. When he felt aggrieved with Liz for not appreciating his thoughtfulness or his help around the house, he wouldn’t tell her about it. He wanted her to feel bad and apologize for snubbing him, but he wasn’t going to ask. He imagined how sweet it would be when she eventually ate humble pie and begged him to take the apology and resume normal relations
At the age of fifty three Simon dropped dead one evening while sitting on the settee with a drink to unwind after his long and tense day. His three teenage children didn’t notice as they ran around absorbed in their cell phones, while his fifty year old wife Renee busied herself in the kitchen preparing dinner. Success in his limousine business had been hard to come by, but for the last 5 years he grew his customer base and brought home more money. The family home was just the way he and Renee had planned and he had a good network of support in his family and community. He belonged to the local gym, and liked to watch NASCAR racing with his friends. But one thing never got any better – that is the demands made on him by his wife, children, extended family and business partner.