Many of us live without this type of relationship that acts as a safe haven and secure base for both partners.
We may not have had a secure bond with our parents or may have faced other emotionally traumatic experiences in isolation while growing up. We may have endured attachment-related injuries as adults such as an affair.
These kinds of experiences make it difficult for us to trust others. We may react in ways that are disproportionate to the situation at hand. We may be in a constant state of fight (complain and demand), flight (shut down and withdraw) or freeze (numb out) as the survival brain takes over.
The echos of trauma can impact our relationship and disconnection in our relationship can trigger the echos of trauma. We can end up with strong feelings of anger, defensiveness, fear, shame and isolation.
EFT can take longer when one or both partners has a history of trauma, nevertheless, EFT is well-equipped to work with the echos of trauma in couple relationships since it is focused on emotion. When we face the overwhelming feelings together, they hurt less. We can face any challenge and problem-solve more easily when we feel as though we are on the same page and have each other's backs.
EFT helps us to create or shape love. As your EFT couples therapist, I will help you to build awareness, connection and a greater sense of wholeness.
Myths and Realities (www.ruthjampolphd.com blog)
1. The therapist will take sides.
An Emotionally Focused Couples Therapist functions as a process consultant and is trained to recognize how both partners contribute to their dance of anger or disconnection.
2. The therapist will tell us we should break up.
The role of an EFT Therapist is to help couples understand how their relationship has gone wrong and to guide them – for as long as they are willing to try – in how to repair it.
3. We are too far gone; the situation is hopeless.
Even long-standing problems can be resolved with EFT therapy. The only clear sign that EFT therapy won’t help is if one or both partners have become so disengaged they are no longer willing to try.
4. Talking about our problems will make things worse.
Many couples have experienced that their own attempts to talk about their problems have made things worse, so this concern is understandable. An EFT Therapist is trained to create a safe space where problems can be discussed productively, opening the door to healing and reconciliation.
5. Couples therapy is a waste of time and does not work.
Many therapists who see couples aren’t trained in an effective model of couples therapy and research has shown there is significant risk that these therapists will not be helpful. A therapist trained in EFT is guided by a roadmap that has years of research demonstrating its effectiveness in helping distressed couples, even years after therapy has ended.
6. We need individual therapy first.
A growing body of evidence suggests that successful couples therapy can actually reduce an individual’s symptoms related to depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress, addictions, and chronic illness. At the very least, a stronger, more supportive relationship will reduce the suffering both partners experience when one is struggling with a psychological disorder. Couples therapy may not be the only treatment needed when a partner has significant psychological symptoms, but when the relationship has suffered, it is often the best place to start. This helps partners to join hands in working together on the challenges they are facing individually.
I am trained in Discernment Counselling which you can learn more about at discernmentcounseling.com. It is for couples who aren't sure they're ready to invest time in couples counselling because at least one partner is leaning out of the relationship (but remains undecided). I can help you to gain clarity, confidence and direction so that you can choose between the three options of maintaining the status quo, separating or engaging in couple counselling to see if the relationship can be saved.