Relationship Counselling | Power, Conflict, Sex & Separation
Relationship counselling enables you to see why you may be struggling with problems in your relationships, and to understand the patterns and things that may be preventing you from overcoming them.
All relationships can go through hard times, but what can make a difference is the way you manage these difficulties. The way you choose to deal with these challenges can make a difference between staying in the relationship or ending it.
Relationship counselling can bring to light past relational experiences which may be unresolved and which may be replaying in your current relationship. Sometimes it can be what we’ve learned in our own family and childhood, which may be getting in the way of our current intimate relationships.
Imbalances In Power
Power exists in all relationships. Having power means to have a sense of control, to have choices, and the ability to influence our environment and others. When we feel empowered, we can manage our emotions, we believe that we matter and that we can affect outcomes. We have a sense of agency in our lives, rather than being at the behest of others and external circumstances.
However, many of us may feel powerless or victims of outside forces. Some of us actually give up our power to others. We may react to others, defer to their needs and desires and have trouble making decisions. Chronic lack of power can lead to depression and physical symptoms. Impaired sense of power can stem from:
- Low-self esteem
- Lack of self-responsibility
- Focus on others’ needs
- Denial of our own needs and desires
- Dependence on others
- Lack of autonomy
- Excessive need for a relationship
- Fear of rejection and abandonment
Although traditional roles are changing and relationships are more equal, what is important is the perception of unfairness and imbalanced power. If you believe your feelings and needs are being ignored, you don’t feel listened to or that your opinions don’t matter, you can end up feeling disrespected and powerless.
Conflict and Arguing
Arguments are common in relationships and can indicate that both parties are expressing themselves rather than bottling things up. But if you find you are arguing all the time, or that simple disagreements end in screaming matches or hostile silence, then things can start to get on top of you.
What’s important is how to deal with disagreements, which will inevitably occur in any relationship. It’s how you handle them that counts. Sometimes what you might be arguing about is only a symptom of what’s going wrong, not the cause. It’s useful to try to think about what you’re really arguing about, is it the surface issue, or something more deep rooted?
It’s very common for a relationship to go through phases where one or both partners lose interest in sex. Sexual interest can tend to ebb and flow over time and partners can have different sex drives at different stages in the relationship. You may feel less connected to each other if you haven’t spent enough time together or there’s been a rift in the relationship.
You may not feel connected to yourself as a sexual being, perhaps because there are things you don’t like about your body and it’s hard to feel positive about yourself as a sexual being. You may also struggle with performance anxiety, so the thought of sex causes anxiety and stress. Also mental and physical illnesses can reduce your desire to want sex.
Separation & Divorce
Separation counselling gives you the space to examine your relationship with less pressure to fix things. The approach can give insight into the sadness you feel, and the time to better understand why your relationship didn’t work out. Practical decisions may need to be considered, and counselling can help you to open communication channels between you and your partner to deal with different issues, such as children and property.
Counselling can also help you with closure and to mourn the loss of the relationship that once held so much promise. It gives the chance to lessen hurt and hostility, which can allow for a less bitter future and allow you to move on without bringing the same issues into a new relationship.
Whatever your relationship difficulty, we can help you find a way forward and support you through the process, whatever the outcome.
Relationship Counselling will help you explore and understand your story, and change patterns that keep you stuck in old behaviours. Once your story and patterns can be seen more clearly you can begin to re-write them and find the strengths, resources and understanding to begin to change and resolve them.
Learn more about Relationships
Here are some articles and blogs about relationships