Do you often get stuck in patterns of negativity?
Are you dissatisfied that your partner doesn't always seem to care?
Do you feel like you are often being criticized and can never do things right?
Do you feel punished by your partner's silence, rejection, or distance?
Do you get angry because you fear your partner might leave you?
If so, your relationship is likely suffering:
Arguments are the #1 reason why relationships end:
How to stop arguments is one of the most common desires couples have. Before we can stop arguments, however, we must first understand why we argue.
In our relationships we often end up arguing because of underlying relationship dissatisfactions. Oftentimes we are not fully aware of what it is we are really missing from our partner, so we pick fights about little things instead.
Unfortunately, when one person becomes critical or starts to ‘nag’, the other person feels attacked and controlled, and often responds by becoming critical themselves or by simply withdrawing emotionally.
In this manner, couples can often get locked into a negative pattern where both feel criticized, invalidated, and unfulfilled.
A frequent pattern we see in couples therapy is that one partner often craves more emotional intimacy and presence from the other person, but doesn’t really know how to ask for it. They may feel lonely, may wonder if their partner really cares about them, or may have anxieties about whether or not they are really a priority.
When they express their dissatisfaction as criticism rather than as a sadness or longing, their partner may only hear that they are falling short in some way. They may therefore try to avoid having conversations about the relationship, and may say or do things just to avoid conflict, while keeping their real thoughts and feelings to themselves.
The downside of course is that the more avoidant one partner is, the less emotional closeness the other partner feels, and so the merry-go-round of criticism and avoidance continues.
Both partners thus often feel stuck and helpless. Their attempt at solving their problems only serves to produce more problems.
Obviously many variations of this basic pattern exist, and it is important to understand exactly what kind of pattern has developed in YOUR relationship.
Helping you understand YOUR specific pattern, and the ways in which it has you stuck, is the first step in helping you get free from the same old arguments and conflicts
By getting more in touch with the vulnerable and soft feelings that underly their anger and self-protection, couples can begin to have more heart-felt conversations about their needs and fears.
The partner who previously felt criticized can now begin to see their loved one's anger as a sign of how much they matter to them and how much their loved one wants to be close to them.
And the partner who previously felt deprived or lonely can now gain access to more of their loved one's inner thoughts and feelings which when shared makes them feel closer and more connected.
In this way, couples can be helped to get into a new kind of pattern, which research has shown leads to increased relationship satisfaction, and a decrease in arguments
The Secret to Fighting Less in Your Relationship:
Couples Therapy Can Help:
Frequent Questions about Couples Therapy:
It is very difficult for couples to simply stop their negative patterns of interacting on their own. One specific reason for this is that couples are often stuck in a cycle where they each push buttons in the other, and each react to some slight or wound perpetrated by their partner. Each partner may therefore feel equally annoyed or entitled to their complaints, and every time a topic is brought up, they therefore end up arguing or blaming each other and do not make any headway toward understanding. A couples therapist can help partners step outside the cycle of blame and see how they both get caught in a vicious cycle. A couples therapist can also choreograph new interactions and new ways of communicating which will give each partner a new experience of each other and will help create a shift in how they interact.
At the face of things, couples therapy can seem expensive, and it is quite natural to have some doubts about whether it is worth the investment. It is true that couples therapy does require a significant investment of money as well as time. For most couples, however, the investment in building a stronger and more secure relationship is well worth it. Not only can it help prevent divorce or separation, it can also help change your relationship from one that taxes your resources and causes constant worry, to one that feels fulfilling and supportive. Investing in your relationship will likely be one of the wisest choices you will make to help you live a happier and more comfortable life.
Emotionally-Focused Couples Therapy (EFT), which is the form of couples therapy we practice at Better Therapy, has been scientifically proven to help couples move out of conflict and into stronger and more secure relationship bonds. It is one of the most researched couples therapy approaches in existence and has been found to be effective with a wide variety of couples. It is particularly effective in working with repairing attachment traumas and relationship injuries, and helping couples strengthen their attachment bonds.
The assumption behind Emotionally-Focused Couples Therapy is that both partners in a relationship have fallen prey to the vicious cycle of interacting with each other, for which one person cannot be blamed. One of the ways Emotionally-Focused Couples Therapy works is by shifting attention from what is wrong with the other person, to the relationship patterns that are causing all the suffering. We help partners get more in touch with the full range of their emotions so they can learn to communicate more authentically with each other. Research shows that expanding your awareness of what you really feel, and communicating more of your feelings with your partner, creates stronger bonds rather than increased conflict. By going deeper into contentious issues and past relationship betrayals, you are able to work through them, so you don't keep repeating them.
Why Book Appointment with Better Therapy?
couples therapy in Houston, TX