Couples Counseling; New You and New Relationship, Practice Healing Trauma in your Relationship
Marriage counseling at Take Charge, Inc. helps struggling couples make changes as individuals and in their relationships, and to also decide if and when to proceed with a trial separation or collaborative divorce. The new year is often a time of resolutions and reflection, but for couples whose marriages are struggling, this often seems like the right time to end the relationship. This happens so frequently, in fact, that January has become known as Divorce Month. Its time to make a change and take steps to practice healing with couples counseling going into 2023.
When someone has a really big reaction to something that doesn’t necessarily warrant that type of reaction it’s usually related to something from the person’s past. Many times, it’s an indication of something that has also been unresolved. The reason that certain things cause such big reactions for people has less to do with the subject matter, and more to do with old wounds and historical traumatic experiences. Trauma can be defined as “a deeply distressing or disturbing event,” and emotional trauma is experienced when there is a violation of a person’s familiar ideas about the world and about their human rights. A recent study by the National Survey of Children’s Health found that almost 50 percent of children in the US have had at least one significant traumatic experience. And the CDC recently reported that 60 percent of American adults report having had at least one adverse childhood experience, or ACE. So how does this corelate to adult relationships?
Events like an infidelity or sudden threat of divorce in relationships can be very emotionally traumatic and people describe experiencing them in terms like, “my world shattered,” or “I felt like the rug was pulled out from under me.” In these examples the relationship that the person believed was stable and secure is turned upside down and unrecognizable. That sense of security being ripped out from under us, and the sense of reality being shattered causes even further emotional trauma. There are developmental traumas (that happen during childhood), and emotional traumas that can happen at any age. Both types of traumas can impact the relationships closest to us, including our marital relationship. The overwhelming impact of trauma on our own body, mind, and emotions can make it difficult to stay open and vulnerable with others. This impact is not only understandably hard to think about, but it’s also very difficult to articulate. Traumatized partners may get triggered by seemingly random cues. This can result in emotional blow-up’s, or numbed out shut down, and can be confusing to both partners. Its important to utilize the help of couples therapy to alleviate some of the pressures of emotional trauma and practice healing.
It is absolutely possible to heal from the internal wounds of trauma, and much more possible if we do it with support. One major key to healing from trauma is learning how to be vulnerable and trusting—both of ourselves and with our ability to tolerate symptoms, and of course – others. This happens slowly, and sometimes we may need the help of a therapist to learn how to do this. Sometimes partners struggle to imagine how their relationship could change because they haven’t discovered what works, not because their marriage is irreparable. At Take Charge, Terri Dichiser utilizes Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy (EFT), which is well backed with scientific research. EFT helps you and your spouse recognize that destructive patterns and behaviors are the enemy in the marriage, not each other. For more information about couples counseling, contact Take Charge, Inc. at (913) 239-8255, or to schedule an appointment, check out our website.
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