Couples work is an important part of my practice. Some couples are looking for help getting over a rough patch in a mostly-good relationship, while others come with their marriage on the line.
As a therapist for over 30 years, I have experience working with people of diverse backgrounds. I bring to my practice a special sensitivity to those experiencing difficulties with marital conflict and relationship problems. My approach is to work with your strengths; help you develop new views and skills and then organize them into a plan that works best for you.
Most couples want to regain the love that they had at the beginning. I help you to rediscover the foundation for a healthy relationship and then help you to recreate the love and strengthen your relationship.
The Building Blocks
When couples come for counseling they often are looking to re-find the magic in their relationships. “I love him/her but I am not IN LOVE” is often the prime statement heard. “I love her but I do not like her” “I like him but I do not love him” are also common themes. These common examples are based on couples coming to therapy and wanting to find a way to fix their relationships, but are wanting to start at the wrong end of the relationship pyramid.
On a page of paper draw an equilateral triangle divided into three segments by horizontal parallel lines. The top segment is small, the middle larger and the bottom segment is the largest. These segments are the building blocks of relationships.
The base section write RESPECT. In the middle write LIKE. And on the top write LOVE. Though love is the pinnacle we all wish to obtain and maintain; the foundation of all relationships is the presence or lack of presence of respect. There are more people in life we respect, even if we do not know them personally, then like or love. Therefore, respect is the largest section. Sometimes as we get to know people, we like them: Neighbors, teachers and coworkers are examples. Of those we like we have a small group that we love. Each type of relationship, each block builds from the other.
Since respect is the foundation of this relationship pyramid; when respect dwindles, decays, the foundation becomes weakened, brittle, fractured. On your drawing from left to write shadow in ¾ of the respect block. Obviously, if this was a real pyramid it would topple over.
We do not want our relationships to topple, so we try to compensate quickly and we take some away from like and also from love until what we have no longer resembles a pyramid (or a healthy relationship). It stands, but it is not pretty and can get be quite ugly and dissatisfying to those involved.
Rebuilding and strengthening the foundation is the only way to securely rebuild the relationship. Relationship therapy is a tool that helps to secure the blocks as rebuilding occurs. Patience is a must, since rebuilding is much more tedious than building from scratch.
Call me for a free non-committal consultation
301 Oxford Valley Rd., Yardley, PA 19067 firstname.lastname@example.org