Psycho-Babble Psychology | about psychological treatments | Framed
This thread | Show all | Post follow-up | Start new thread | List of forums | Search | FAQ

Fighting to relationship..... again

Posted by Dinah on May 9, 2008, at 17:14:59

If today's session had been recorded, I don't know if it would make it into the great moments of therapy presentation. But no couples counseling course would be complete without it.

We had the sort of session that only two people possessing excellent training in fighting to relationship could have. If therapy had ended today, it would have been fitting in a way. Today's session could have been the showcase of what thirteen years of therapy can do.

The tone was established early. It's like we each used one hand to hold on tightly to the fierce caring and respect we had for each other. And with that anchor, we were free to say what we felt. All the reasonable and sensible things and all the unreasonable and less than sensible things. But it never got ugly because we kept holding on tight to each other and to our relationship.

There were misunderstandings and times when things looked to be at a standstill, and like the end was near. Each of us was determined to hold firm on what we thought was important, and while that made things dicey at times, we also did our best to understand what was important to the other and why. We did a lot of reflective listening (when you say that, what I hear is...) and lots of I statements. We each expressed more vulnerability than we may have preferred.

I wouldn't give on the fact that I needed to have more information if I was to consider going through another really painful period with him. I made sure he really understood how painful it was, and he says he has a new understanding of that. Or maybe he just remembered an old understanding. I'm not sure. I thought this would be a sticking point as he appeared to be ready to give up. But I asked if there wasn't any way I could get what I needed, and I tried an old technique I pull out on Administration sometimes with Dr. Bob. I gave him four statements and asked which was closest to correct. And after much thought on his part, he chose one that was somewhat acceptable to me. That he has no intention of leaving town at this point, and no wish to leave town at this point, but that he can't rule out that in the future he might change his mind.

He *says* that the reason he finds this so hard to answer is that if he does change his mind and leave in the future I'll be angry that he lied to me. I told him that if he terminates me, I'm going to be angry no matter what he says now, and that should be the least of his worries.

So... I guess we left on good terms and with our usual routines in place. And I agreed to give it a chance and see how it goes, and he agreed to try very hard not to hurt me by being absent.

He asked how he was doing today, and of course today he was enormously present. But as I told him, we can't have major drama every week. He needs to be present when the energy level is at its normal point.

I already knew that he cares about me, but he was very clear on that point today, and on the fact that he's committed to do what it takes to make the therapy relationship work (unless of course he chooses to leave town). And I was clear throughout how much I cared about him. I even reminded him of that dream. And he took it in the way I meant it.

All in all, it was a masterful example of fighting to relationship. Of course, this is not new to either of us. But somehow in the frame of a fifty minute (or maybe hour) very intense session, the beauty of it was highlighted.

That's not enough of course. The followthrough will have to be there. But for tonight at least I feel like I'm part of something very very special. And I don't think it would be unreasonable for me to think he may feel that way too.




Post a new follow-up

Your message only Include above post

Notify the administrators

They will then review this post with the posting guidelines in mind.

To contact them about something other than this post, please use this form instead.


Start a new thread

Google www
Search options and examples
[amazon] for

This thread | Show all | Post follow-up | Start new thread | FAQ
Psycho-Babble Psychology | Framed

poster:Dinah thread:828225