Marriage counseling at Take Charge, Inc. is available for spouses so they can navigate the holidays together, whatever life throws at them. It can be especially stressful for one or both spouses if they have experienced trauma, which can resurface during this time of year. Marriage counseling will help you build your marriage and spouses can enjoy the holidays as a team.
This time of year can inspire festive gatherings and activities of joy, togetherness, and heartfelt memories with family and friends. For some, though, the holidays can be a challenging time of stress, adversity, and a difficult trigger of strong emotions, pressures, or traumatic experiences. The holidays can cause friction in even the strongest marriages. Money, family members, and traveling are some of the top challenges a couple will deal with over the holidays.
Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy (EFT) is used by Terri Dichiser at Take Charge, Inc., during marriage counseling. EFT counseling is based on therapy with your spouse in the safe environment of Terri’s office to help you create a haven of safety and strength in your marriage. Marriage based on a connection with your spouse that makes you stronger as an individual and in your marriage.
Be especially mindful of the impact the holidays can have on well-being and its influence on trauma reactions. The holidays can heighten emotions of loss, loneliness, anxiety, tension, sadness, and much more. Fatigue or poor eating and drinking habits influenced by holiday activities and pressures can take a physical toll. Sensory-based experiences with holiday-inspired music and smells can be painful for some survivors to navigate, as well as past memories, traditions, or loved ones. Trauma-informed care recognizes how these experiences can impact a survivor during this season. Know that it’s okay to say no to others if your feelings are too overwhelming to participate in certain activities. Be mindful not to isolate yourself regularly but it is okay to say no at times.
Marriage counseling can help one or both spouses deal with the trauma they endured. Terri uses EFT to help you and your spouse move past the surface problems you face into the root issues that brought your relationship to this point. Marriage based on a connection with your spouse that makes you stronger as an individual and in your marriage.
Fighting over money happens at some point in every marriage. In fact, some couples fight over this regularly. Therefore, it’s no surprise that holiday time puts an excessive amount of stress on a couple. Get together as a family to write up how much you are willing to spend on that special day. You can also allocate amounts for certain purchases or activities. Put these amounts in envelopes. Once the cash runs out of the envelope, the shopping experience is over.
Then there’s family. Some you love, some are difficult to be around. Regardless of how you feel about them, you will cope better knowing you and your spouse have each other’s back by setting boundaries. When dealing with toxic family members, it’s okay to articulate your feelings with love and respect. It’s also okay to remind your parents that you are both adults capable of making your own decisions. An open dialogue with each other about your fears and expectations around holiday plans will give couples the opportunity to discuss strategies to deal with potential conflict. Marriage counseling provides the environment for spouses to speak freely about their feelings in a safe environment. Presenting that united front will yield better results and reduce marital stress.
How many times have you sat in an airport during the holiday season and thought, “What was I thinking?!” Traveling during the busiest time of the year can bring out the worst in you both, but by being aware ahead of time of the stress, as a couple you can make the best of it. Even if the family home has plenty of space, it is a good idea to build in some personal space to save the holiday. Stay in a hotel to get over jet lag or to have a quiet place to go to during the long all-day event. It’s best to automatically factor in around 25 percent extra time for delays and incidentals to reduce stress and frustration around what is likely to happen anyway.
Your life does not need to be a lifestyle magazine photo spread. Simple is better, and we often remember the quaint fails with more warmth than the pristine table. The holidays can be a time of stress on a marriage, but marriage counseling can also help it go smoother, and know what to anticipate and how to deal with it.