Therapy x Two

In the comparison game, it’s been hard not to think that we’re doing something wrong since we’re in therapy so early on in our relationship. But last night I realized that the truth of it is- we are doing it right for us. We realized we had communication issues when we shacked up and instead of throwing up our hands and quitting on each other, we dug deeper into ourselves to try to be a better partner for the other. We didn’t have years of hurt and miscommunication between us yet and I think that helps because we’re just working on ourselves, not trying to untangle years of resentment. Instead of waiting for things to be awful, we cut it off at the pass.

I’m the  pro-therapy one in our match. Mr. Darcy goes for me and for us and in the process has realized he can get a lot out of it for himself. One of things I love about him is his willingness to try, even when it is uncomfortable for him. We’ve been seeing our counselor for 9 months now and we both can see that the other has made changes. Do we still fight? Yes. And we will always fight because fighting is natural when two people are in a relationship. Would we like to never fight? Mr. Darcy probably would. I would feel weird if we didn’t. But we both have different triggers around fighting from our childhoods. What’s important is how we fight and how we move through it to a better place. Topics that once fueled tears and raised voices now can be discussed with more of a level head. We’re not rushing to protect ourselves with statements like “maybe we should just break up” when one of us feels hurt or scared. We’re learning to say what we want and what we need which is hard for both of us but necessary for the health of our relationship and our personal happiness. We’re practicing sitting with the feelings even when we wish we could fix them and make everything better.

I realize a lot of people don’t talk about this kind of stuff publicly but I am because I’ve found when I have confided in someone about our struggles they more often than not can relate. And maybe in the relating we can all feel less alone and less like we’re doing it “wrong”. Trying to make a life with someone you love is never going to look like a Hollywood movie. It’s messy and challenging. It takes work and diligence and compromise. And it will, in the littlest of moments, take my breath away with its beauty.

 

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15 thoughts on “Therapy x Two

  1. I think it’s great that you are going to therapy together and it’s great that it is good for you. I think it’s a fallacy that we are born knowing how to communicate perfectly with others or that you can just look into someone’s eyes and that is all you need. Sounds like you are building something meaningful and substantial together.

  2. Yay, Sizzle! Thank you for your bravery. I share about being in therapy, too, and sometimes I’m afraid. But I do it anyway because I believe in it and I want to spread the word that it’s a good, responsible, normal thing to do.

    I’m so encouraged to see you choosing to do things differently with your partner than you may have seen in the past. It takes a lot of work and the rewards seem extraordinary.

  3. I love this post, Sizz. I can *so* relate. Except that I’m the one with less counseling, but I’m the one who wanted the couples counseling; he said no. You two are awesome and inspiring – and brave.

  4. I love my boyfriend from the top of my head to the tips of my toes — so much it kind of freaks me out sometimes — and I have to say, I am petrified of our first fight. We’ve somehow gone 7+ months without…and I hope that if we do start to have some challenges, we deal with them as well as you and Mr. Darcy. Because Dave, too, is worth it. As am I. 🙂

  5. I can definitely relate. I’ve been having so much anxiety tied to work lately that I’ve pretty much decided on trying therapy myself. A piece of me thinks ‘you rarely have problems with anxiety — do you really need therapy for the few days that you do,’ but I know that cutting it off at the pass like you’ve done is a much better approach than letting it get worse and seriously affect other parts of my life. I think reading about other people’s experiences with therapy is what has made me feel comfortable with pursuing it myself, so I’m glad there are people like you who feel comfortable talking about it. I wish there were more so that there would be no stigma.

  6. I think it’s not only wise, but also very brave that you guys are being proactive and trying to settle and work on issues even before they become something bigger unmanageable. I think tons of couples could have benefited from doing this… maybe if we all did, the divorce/breakup rate would be much lower in this country.

  7. I agree: relationships can be very difficult but as long as you have a strong base of love then you can pretty much get through anything 🙂 I think I’m lucky in that we’re both not very argumentative. I don’t think we’ve ever raised our voices to one another throughout our entire 5 year relationship lol, that’s not to say we don’t fight cos we do 😉

  8. I really appreciate you bringing your truthfulness about your relationship to your blog. Relationships take work if they are to succeed and I think you and Mr. Darcy are doing the right things for your relationship to make it stronger.

  9. I think you’re an amazing writer. And a nice person. 😉 Good for you and Mr. Darcy for committing time and effort to your relationship!

  10. I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again: I think every person and every couple can benefit from counseling. It’s sort of like school – it just gives you really great tools to use in day-to-day life. Mr. W and I have talked many times about how we’d both be open to counseling if we were having troubles. Honestly, I don’t think we’d be together had I not gone to therapy on my own before I met him.

    You and Mr. Darcy are doing a great thing – building a great relationship with a solid foundation. And the fact that you’re sharing it in hopes of inspiring and relating to others is awesome.

  11. Never change your openness, Sizz. I love it! There was a time when I would’ve thought therapy early on was a sign for disaster. But as I’ve gotten older and have been married for nearly 10 years, I’ve come to realize that the opposite is probably true! Relationships are tricky, especially in the long term. Getting everything out in the open and on the table from the get-go will be an advantage. x

  12. I think it is awesome that he is willing to go and try even though it isn’t what he would prefer. He’s such a good guy, and I love that you are doing this! Some guys are not at all willing to go out of their comfort zone and then things turn into HUGE things that could have been avoided if you got them right when they started and worked on them. I know from experience, as you know. I wonder why it is often the guy that doesn’t want to go. I guess maybe because women are allowed to have feelings and men are kind of told to squash them and not share. Sad because I’m pretty sure we all feel feelings and need to work on things.

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