When To Seek Professional Help In Your Marriage
A couple needs to work on their relationship for their “happily ever after” to happen.
When To Seek Professional Help In Your Marriage
A couple needs to work on their relationship for their “happily ever after” to happen.
As Revealed By Marriage Counselors And Therapists
From sex to money, marriage counselors and therapists weigh in on the seven most common issues married couples don’t see eye-to-eye.
“A healthy relationship requires knowing the skills necessary for “friendly fighting” — dealing with conflict respectfully and working together to find a workable solution. Friendly fighting means working out differences that matter. It means engaging passionately about things we feel passionate about, without resorting to hurting one another.” – Marie Hartwell-Walker, Ed.D.
In a relationship, a lot of us believe that what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger. Therefore, the things that hurt us in the slightest of ways get ignored. Perhaps we think that some things are worth to forget and some mistakes require instant forgiveness. “When we choose to hold onto this anger and let it eat us up, it can make us irritable, impatient, distracted, and even physically ill.Forgiveness is all about us, and not about the other person. We don’t forgive other people because they deserve it.” – Kurt Smith, Psy.D., LMFT, LPCC, AFC.
But does it have to be like that all the time? Do we entirely need to exert effort to wholeheartedly accept the person who always hurt us without an excuse? I don’t think so. Even the nicest individual in the world will agree that some things need to change for the better.
Love And Prejudice
We often mistake the idea of love for affection. A lot of us believe that when there is this strong connection, we appear obliged to follow a not-so-worthy relationship rule, which is to forgive and forget. However, the problem lies in the consistency of the damage. You see, it is easy to apologize and say sorry. However, it becomes hard to keep making things better after that. As a result, the apology gets overused because mistakes are getting its way back on its line. Then what happens? We begin to tolerate the slips. We begin to have this ideology that perhaps we deserve the things that are currently in front of us. That whatever we do to make things better, it will be useless because the whole thing relates to our idea of love.
The Sad Truth
“Things don’t disappear on their own. You need to make the commitment to “let it go.” If you don’t make this conscious choice up-front, you could end up self-sabotaging any effort to move on from this past hurt.” – John M. Grohol, Psy.D.
Second chances appear given to those people who deserve it. However, there is no guarantee to know when a person needs it. Unfortunately, we often look at the brighter side of every mistake of our significant other that we do not consider creating an adjustment to how we should deal with things. We get used to the idea that to save a relationship, we have to allow chances multiple times. We become weak in creating decisions because we only focus on hopes and dreams. That is the problem why we get stuck in an unhealthy relationship. We heed towards change, but we, ourselves, do not try and work on it.
It Is Over
It may sound inconsiderate, but the process of giving multiple chances to an individual who doesn’t know how to use it well is stupidity. Yes, it is not love, neither consideration. It is a stupid gesture that we do we believe that people change once we tell them what we think and how we feel. But no! It merely represents an act of ignorance towards the situation we cannot handle. But do not get me wrong. I do not intend to say that we should not forgive those people who hurt us. We should because that is the only thing that brings us peace. What I am trying to emphasize here is that these people, if they are genuinely concern about us, they will exert an effort never to commit the same mistake over and over again. But if that is not how they see us, then we have to guiltlessly call it quits.
“So what is the solution to dealing with resentment against your spouse and its possible escalation to anger? The solution is to channel the shock at your spouse’s behavior into empathy, to try and understand them, and to come at the situation trying to see their perspective.” – Dr. Alicia H. Clark.
“Self-Harm as a coping strategy does work for many people and they would say it reduces stress, but only for a short time. Often shame and embarrassment follow the act of self-injurious behavior and this can increase stress levels, so self-harm could be described as a maladaptive coping skill. In the long run it is not helping the person to solve and master their problems; it is becoming one of the problems.” – Theresa Larsen, coordinator of a mental health awareness program for youth.
Cutting, burning, or even hitting oneself are some of the forms of self-harm that have been around from centuries ago and up until today. There are many explanations to why people do this. The most common would be because of emotional stress and pressure. With such tension building up, resorting to these methods somehow relieve numbs away the pain.
“Self-harming behavior may look like a form of self-punishment. It may be, but it also serves as a mechanism for emotional self-regulation for those with unresolved trauma.” – Robyn Brickel, MA, LMFT.
“Forgiveness is letting go of the need for revenge and releasing negative thoughts of bitterness and resentment,” according to Lynn Ponton, MD.
There is a thin line between forgiveness and tolerance. That is especially when your romantic relationship is the one causing an emotional and mental imbalance to your overall development. If you and your significant other are contributing damage to each other instead of growth, it becomes a reason that both of you should consider moving away from each other. With that said, the choice of ending a relationship is a must in this particular circumstance. But what if your partner has no idea of what is entirely going on? What if your loved one is still in the process of trying to understand the necessity of adjustments? Will you be able to excuse yourself for deciding to call it quits?
In all honesty, there is no such thing as an unintentional breakup. Both you and your partner end up separating because both or one of you decides to finish whatever it is that holds the relationship. No one can blame who for leaving, and no one can force the other one to stay. But if you are the one who decides to cut ties and move away, your explanation is more than needed. Perhaps you feel uncomfortable, or you are not happy anymore. Whatever your reasons are, one thing will only state it – personal choice.
“As you build up your confidence and regroup, you’ll get clearer about what you want next. Some pieces from your past may continue onward, but some may completely change. Be selective about what you bring along for the ride and trust the process as it unfolds. Don’t cling.” This is from counselor Victoria Gigante, Ed.M.
The Validation Of The Final Decision
Let us assume that your romantic relationship is full of shit. There is toxicity everywhere that makes you feel vulnerable to too much anxiety, stress, and depression. With all that pressure, you feel entitled to end whatever it is you have romantically. But then you delay the decision because there is a part of you that tells you should wait and be patient. With that, you are going to do things over again. Is that worth the risk? Well, for some people, they believe that the right to end a relationship depends on its level of unhealthiness. But who can determine what those things are? No one! That is the reason they come up to a deciding point to call the relationship off when it is already too late.
“There is great value in mastering the skill of forgiving but not forgetting. Taking good care of ourselves requires regular forgiveness of others. Remember, we do it for us, not for them. And we don’t obsess, but we don’t forget, either, so we can take the valuable life lessons with us.” – Kurt Smith, Psy.D., LMFT, LPCC, AFC,
You see, if there is no need to worry about; then do not worry. You are not and never will be guilty of choosing your overall health. You do not hold any explanation as to why you prefer peace and mindfulness over a toxic relationship. You do not have to feel uncomfortable with the decision of choosing your emotional and mental development. Regardless of what is on the line, it does not matter. You have to live with your peace and stay true to yourself.
No one can tell when a relationship reaches its full toxicity. There may be signs that can determine it, but it can never be a guarantee to become a turning point. However, one thing is sure. Nobody deserves a painful and stressful commitment. It is not right to stay in a disturbing situation only to tell yourself that you are indeed in a relationship.
Depression can kill romance and make your sex life boring. When this happens, it will definitely push your love away, and this is the worst scenario you would not want to happen or else it will leave you more depressed.
According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-V), at least five of the following symptoms must be present within a two-week period with at least one of the symptoms being depressed mood. Additionally, these symptoms must cause apparent distress in social and occupational functioning.
Loss of interest in activities
Feelings of guilt
Loss of energy
Change in appetite
(Mentioned in an article by Kristen Fuller, M.D.)
Most of us struggle with depression at some point in our lives. In fact, depression is the number one cause of disability worldwide according to the World Health Organization. It doesn’t only cause us to be ineffective in our workplace, but it also affects our ability to love our self and our spouse.
“Finding a long-term partner is the most important decisions you will ever make in your life. It’s actually a good thing to question it. Learning how to know if he’s the one allows you to look at your relationship in a new light.” – Lianne Avila, marriage counselor.
In case you still do not understand the importance of keeping a relationship, you might as well consider taking a step back and think about things through. I am not saying that you have to spend an amount of time and effort trying to figure out if your relationship is working or not. All I am trying to say is that you should take a moment to process the problems of your relationship internally. Admit it. You often look outside of the box. You focus too much on the factors that damage your relationship, such as pressure, incompatibility, minor disagreements, and so on. However, you do not intend to evaluate how you react when it comes to engaging with relationship issues.
Never Ever Speak Ill About Your Partner To People You Both Know
“When someone talks kindly and favorably about us, we typically stand up straighter and feel called to higher character,” Jessica Higgins, Ph.D said. “When someone speaks negatively about us, we tend to feel hurt, angry, defensive and resentful.” She’s frequently heard partners say: “If you are going to call me a jerk, I am going to act like a jerk.”
I guess it is normal for you to talk to your friends and family about your relationship situation. Understandably, there is some emotional and mental struggle that needs to come out. But what is not okay is when you intentionally or unintentionally speak ill about your significant other. There is no amount of excuse for that. Not only you are damaging your partner’s reputation, but you are also giving people a wrong impression of your way of handling specific relationship situation. Blaming your significant others for the inconsistencies of the relationship and shoving it to people will not solve anything. Instead, it will only create a more extensive gap that both you and your partner might never patch.
“Excessive complaining doesn’t usually occur in one area, like relationships,” said Lisa Brookes Kift, MFT. “Those who complain tend to have a habit of doing so in life.”
Never Ever Post Any Relationship Issues On Social Media
Yeah right. You are only trying to express emotions and current mood on your wall. There is nothing personal with that. Therefore, you do not genuinely have to worry about what others might say or think about your status. But is that how you entirely see it? Seriously, if you can’t keep your relationship private, then do not be in a relationship. If you do not understand the meaning of privacy, then do not commit to the responsibility of keeping things in a low profile. Yes, you can brag it online and tell people how good your relationship is. But never post your issues on social media because honestly, nobody cares. You are only trying to ruin yourself by allowing people to comment on your rant.
Never Ever Believe What People Tell You About Your SO
If there is one thing you need to do to keep your relationship healthy; that is never, ever to believe what people tell you about your significant other. But, not unless they have proof to support their unfavorable claim towards your partner, allow yourself to have the benefit of the doubt. Ask your partner about it and have a sincere conversation. But if there’s not much evidence to support anything malicious, then never believe what people say. You and your SO are on the same team so you should work together. Remember, one false accusation can lead to emotional and mental destruction.
Stabilizing a relationship takes quite a lot of effort. But it doesn’t mean you can’t work on it.
Healthy relationships shouldn’t take much work. And if they do, it’s time to go our separate ways. We must be compatible. If we need therapy, our relationship is already doomed. My partner is supposed to know what I want, and what I need. Healthy couples never argue, because fighting ruins relationships. Margarita Tartakovsky, M.S. says that this is a misconception. Healthy relationship means arguing, not fighting – and built around support and trust.
There are times that we often feel uncomfortable with our relationship. Perhaps that is due to the tons of issues we currently experience. There are too much drama and toxicity that makes us feel uninterested in patching things up with our significant other. In some unfortunate instances, we somehow think that the only reason why need to stay committed is the years spent with our partner that we don’t want to go to waste.
“If you normally shut down, lash out, or disconnect when strong feelings arise in your relationship, developing the skills of emotion mindfulness can help you to get centered, understand what you’re feeling, and better communicate to your partner about what you need, as well as listen to their needs.” – Ronald Frederick, Ph.D.
But does it bother you to know that maybe the reason why you do not feel comfortable in the relationship anymore is that you are doing things you are not supposed to?
Never Ever Tell A Stranger A Single Issue Both You And Your Partner Are Dealing With
One particular mistake in a relationship that a lot of people tend to ignore is the idea of looking for an outside zone comfort. No, it is not okay to tell a stranger the things that you and your partner are dealing with. Not only it does create a barrier in your communication, but it also allows a third party to come in and engage. If you still do not get it, it is where an unwanted affair starts. Yes, that is a fact. Cheating sometimes doesn’t happen by choice. Some chances are it can start with a simple “hello” from an unknown person. Then, it becomes an unintentional affair.
Never Ever Ask A Friend To Say Things To Your Partner On Your Behalf
If you and your significant other are having an issue, there is no way your friends can take sides. But because they often hear only a side of the story, they start to judge. Honestly, that is okay. You cannot blame them for having a split opinion. But the thing you shouldn’t do is to ask them to speak for you. It is your relationship, and it is your partner. Therefore, it is your responsibility to talk and communicate with your significant other. Your friends must stay away on the issue because their involvement is limited to what you and your partner allow.
Never Ever Agree To Let People Decide For Your Relationship
Honestly, it is okay to ask for suggestions and take in some people’s opinion whenever there is one. However, what is not okay is when you allow people to make a life-changing decision that you know you are uncomfortable doing. Not because a lot of people are telling you to do it; it does not mean it will end well. Note that not all comments are useful, and not all suggestions are applicable in your situation. It is your life and your relationship. You are the one that must decide for it because it is you and your partner that will suffer if all goes tumbling down.
Being in a relationship is an ongoing task. It is not all about spending time together and staying happy. There are complications that you and your partner must take into account. Therefore, do not rush into judging and try evaluating yourself too.
“Falling in love is a wonderful feeling. At the beginning of every relationship, everything is new and fresh. A new face, new voice, new body, and, of course, new sexual energy. The mystery is there.” – Lianne Avila, marriage and couples counselor. It’s just a reminder for you.
Life is always hectic. There are still a lot of things to be done every single day and a lot of things to think about and give focus on. Because of this, people tend to forget to focus on themselves without realizing that slowly, they are getting tired, drained, and as therapist calls it, burnt out.
“There can be a visceral sense of your nerves being ‘fried’ or ‘burnt,’ which can include headache, fatigue, irritability, sensory sensitivity,” accordingt to clinical psychologist Jessica Michaelson, PsyD.
Being burnt out affects everyone. You may be an employee or a student, someone with a strong personality or not; having emotional baggage or prolonged stress with you can eventually cause this condition. Besides affecting a person emotionally and mentally, it can also affect a person physically. Nowadays, mostly affected by this condition are students, most specifically college students.
What Is Burnout?
In an article by Concorde Colleges, burnout was explained as an “emotional, physical, and mental exhaustion that is caused by ongoing stress.” Additionally, Rhonda Gillylan, Student Services Advisor at Concorde Tampa, said that this could be seen when someone is “feeling overwhelmed and unable to meet constant demands.” This state can develop along the way needing further treatment if neglected.
“Often we beat ourselves up for feeling ‘done’ with something, as if it’s a moral failure, so we don’t honor the wisdom of our bodies’ cues,” said clinical psychologist Jessica Michaelson, PsyD. “Being in a chronic state of crisis makes us sick.”
Like other medical conditions, burnout also has its signs and symptoms people should look out for. It has physical and emotional symptoms.
Physical symptoms include:
Emotional symptoms include:
Causes Of Burn Out
These two are at the top of the list of the causes for college burnout. Graduating with honors entails, one should be entirely equipped in handling the hurdles of taking up a degree. It worsens in the long run when parents, relatives, close friends, and even former teachers express their opinions on how you should be faring academically, socially, and emotionally.
On the other hand, starting as an average student may mean lesser expectations, but does not complete the whole picture. Some see college as a chance to start anew, so failing might feel disconcerting if one fails to meet expectations. More importantly, college is labeled as the period where one determines what career he/she should pursue. Trying to meet standards, in the long run, may result in burnout.
Moving into a new environment where people, academics, and the façade are different are essential adjustments for someone getting in college. It is also crucial to remember this occurs not just to college students in their first year. The feeling of isolation results in a lack of confidence and trust in making friends. It affects ‘one’s approach towards finishing a degree that is supposed to develop you as a whole.
This is a reaction to the dreaded concept of isolation. However, this may not be a solution to it. Constantly trying to project an image of someone that you are not is a tiring process. College life is a hodgepodge of factors that students must handle. Having to try to fit in is an added stress to the already-stressful pursuit of finishing a degree.
Burn Out And Therapy
“Burnout is a physiological consequence of pushing yourself beyond your physical and emotional limits—sustained stress/fight or flight response—for too long,” said Brandon Santan, PhD, LPC-MHSP.
There is no particular therapy for all and that the treatment itself is confidential. However, there are ways you can use to prevent college burnout. First and foremost, you should acknowledge if you already feel the symptoms of burnout. By stepping in early, you will be able to give yourself the chance to breathe and think lighter than doing it under pressure and stress.
Next would be learning how to say no. It is evident that during ‘one’s college years, students tend to fit in with peers but if you think some of the things are not really who you are – ‘it’s okay to say no. Do not force yourself to like something that will exhaust you in the long run.
Most importantly, rest. Don’t forget that you need enough sleep and rest too. College life can be tiring. You need to deal with school, friends, even love life for that matter but don’t forget, at the end of the day, your body needs to recharge. With the right amount of sleep, you will be more productive, and your thoughts will be more precise.
Experiencing college burnout is becoming more common these days, and it is never a shame to seek therapy and other forms of treatment if this will help. Remember, it is always a must to breathe and set our minds to what our goals are.
When you find out that your husband has been cheating on you, your emotions will all be full of hatred and pain. Your heart and soul screams hate and you want nothing more but to punish and plan your sweet revenge. The anxiety, frustration, and anger wake you up from your sleep and you vow never to forgive. Right at that very moment, it is very difficult to let go of these emotions.
Indeed, it’s easier said than done, but a majority of mental health experts and individuals who were cheated on say that forgiveness actually benefits the person without fault more than the cheating partner. The negative feelings you feel because of the infidelity are like poison to the body and mind, and forgiveness is apparently the antidote – the solution to getting rid of the poison within.
But how can you forgive? Let us try to understand what forgiveness means and how we are able to achieve it.
What Is Forgiveness?
“Cheating in a marriage or other committed relationship is so destructive that about 50% of the time the couple breaks up.” Dave Stacho LMHC explains. Forgiving a cheating husband doesn’t mean that you assure him that you are going to forget about what he did. It doesn’t even mean that you’re staying in the marriage if you don’t want to. This is about how you feel about your partner and your internal emotions.
A mental health professional defines forgiveness as stopping the feeling of resentment towards an offender. He emphasizes, though, that the act of forgiving is not actually for the offender but for you, the individual who got hurt, cheated, and is now holding the resentment. It is part of the individual’s journey towards recovery and healing after being hurt by someone that you truly love. It is moving on after being humiliated and disrespected, so much so that your physical, emotional, and mental health is at the risk of failing.
How Will Forgiving Help Me?
Again, forgiving is not about the cheater but more about the offended – you. And because of this, forgiving can benefit you more than you realize.
Should I Stay In The Marriage?
Before answering this in your mind, think about the strength of your relationship. If it was built from a weak foundation, then it cannot withstand the infidelity and you might as well leave and save both you and your husband from more pain and hostility. To be fair to your husband, the cheater, you also need to tell him that you might never forgive him, or not for a long time at least.
However, if you are one of the wives or individuals who are willing to forgive and release the anger, hurt, and resentment for a better life, then continue reading.
How Do I Forgive?
Forgiving your husband is going to be the hardest part of this advice. Even if you’ve decided to take that step of forgiveness, it seems so difficult to do. If all else fails, don’t hesitate to seek professional help.
Therapy is a vital step towards the journey to forgiveness. Counseling will depend on which path you took. If you decided to end your marriage, then individual counseling will work best for you. If you opted to give your marriage another go, then you can try couples counseling. Whichever type of counseling you choose, the results are all worth it.
In therapy, it is important to realize that the therapist won’t erase all your problems in one flip of his wand. As a couple, you should work with the therapist in slowly but surely opening up, releasing your emotions, and starting the journey of healing and reconciliation.
There is freedom in forgiveness, that’s what experts say – freedom from the ill feelings that will drag you down to your misery and failure. Take that big step now and find out for yourself. It might be your ticket to a happier you.