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Relationship Crisis - Advice
By Yvonne FitzPatrick
When your relationship is in crisis, it very important to be able to slow right down in what is often a very fast process. To be willing and able to recognize what's going on in your head and body in any given moment is essential. This means becoming aware of the narrative going on in your head and paying attention to the story which can shape and direct your reactions in powerful ways. The problem with what is going on in our heads is, the more you get swept away with the story and the strong feelings it provokes, the more you are restricted in your ability to respond.
Looking at the situation in stages is wise. See if you can agree to accept the situation as it is now. And hopefully, whatever you start with will not be what you finish with. When I talk about acceptance I mean active, not passive acceptance. This means putting some boundaries in place. It's important to be honest, to be gentle, to care and do things that can make life easier for one another. If you can you agree on some common values together such as respect, compassion, honesty, responsibility, with an end goal of coming up with a solution you can both live with you will create a climate which feels safe, comfortable and secure for you to talk.
In first stage, I wonder if you can accept that you already have had your share of emotional drama. And instead of looking back on that drama, look forward and focus on your relationship, on the connection that brought the two of you together, the one which forged the circle of intimacy that you both once shared.
Try and find your way back to this circle. This means making and keeping protected time where you can reconnect with each other and going back to what you liked about each other when you first met. Counselling can help you to do this.
Each day write down three things about one another which you find attractive, things you really appreciate, find funny, are grateful for, things which help you to reconnect with the people you were when you first met.
"You may think that your individual love will keep your relationship together but it is your relationship which will keep your love together!” While I’m not sure who said this, I believe it is worth taking a moment to consider the infinite wisdom of their words.