We all desire our relationships to be a safe, loving, trusting and romantic. However sometimes it’s not as straightforward as all that and we get stuck in bad habits of connection. Let's look at whether your relationship is a healthy one or whether it need strengthening.
Relationships in the beginning are quite easy, because we are in the 'honeymoon' period where not much is a problem. However, when that period in your relationship is over, ask yourself have we joined from two individuals to form a strong couple bond? or does it feel we are still two separate people, but living together?
Most of the time, this is not a clear cut issue. Relationships are complex webs of human interaction and problems may develop slowly, over many months or years, possibly without you or your partner even realising. However, once the feeling sets in that ‘something isn’t right’, that’s when working with me at Redland's Counselling Service can work on building stronger connections and help you understand what’s going on.
Do any of the following scenarios sound familiar?
We are Fighting too much?
It’s normal to have disagreements, but as you get to know each other, you would expect there to be a progression towards better understanding and communication. John Gottman showed in his research that that 69% of relationship conflict is about perpetual problems. All couples have them — these problems are grounded in the fundamental differences that any two people face. They are either fundamental differences in your personalities that repeatedly create conflict, or fundamental differences in your lifestyle needs.
If you keep going round in circles arguing with each other, possibly over the same thing, there may be a problem. Poor communication that never improves is detrimental to your relationship, so let's work on changing those bad habits. You can book online for Relationship Counselling Capalaba.
Unable to Raise Issues?
Does it feel like we are unable to raise issues because it escalates quickly into an agreement? This is a negative interaction cycle that keeps continuing, unless you learn to change how you communicate and self-soothe. Ask yourself, what type of partner do I want to be in this relationship? If you find yourself saying, 'why should I change?', 'they should change first?' then you are firmly stuck in expecting other people to change first. Remember, change starts with you.
Wishing your were home alone?
Do you find yourself wishing that your partner wasn’t around? Do you have more fun on your own? If you prefer spending the evening home alone while encouraging him to go to the pub, or you increasingly socialise independent of each other, all may not be well at home. With tensions building while you’re together, you may start to realise that life would be happier on your own.
Do we Compromise?
In a good relationship, the balance of power is evenly distributed; there’s plenty of give and take so that both parties feel that their voice is heard. However, if one partner feels powerless or disenfranchised, they may try to redress the balance by inadvertently upsetting the proverbial apple cart. Suddenly, the relationship feels on edge, destabilised and uprooted, upsetting both partners.
Positive communication is key in any relationship – you need to be able to talk about important issues to move your relationship forward. However, if your partner refuses to talk about the big stuff such as moving home, getting married, having a baby? Blocking the possibility of talking about the future means the relationship is stuck in the present, which could lead to a build up of resentment.
We all change and the secret of a long-term relationship is to keep adapting to each others needs and a willingness to make it work. If you find yourself thinking that ‘this isn’t how it used to be’, ‘this doesn’t feel good anymore’ or ‘this isn’t what I signed up for’, then perhaps what was once a good relationship has turned bad. Can you bring the good times back?
If you’re tired of feeling stuck, lonely or unhappy in your current relationship, seeing a relationship counsellor may help. Redland's Counselling Service at Capalaba, we can work together to strengthen your relationship, giving you plenty of strategies to help you achieve the relationship that is important to you both.