For most people, raising concerns that things might not be working in their relationship, or having their partner raise it can be very difficult and confronting. Then making a decision to seek professional help can be daunting. Often it is just one person in the couple that thinks it’s a good idea and the other person might outright refuse or take some convincing. For the Couple Counsellor, working with some hesitation or resistance is not uncommon.
Relationships require work! Regular check-ins are key and being proactive in order to keep the relationship on track is vital.
Be empathetic towards your partner. Be interested and try to understand why your partner is acting the way they are.
Make sure the positive experiences in your relationship outweigh the negative experiences by five to one. The key here is in noticing and acknowledging them.
Learn to calm yourself before you continue the discussion. Even if this means having some space for a few minutes to breath and then returning to the discussion. Learn what your partner needs during times of conflict.
When mistakes are made, make sure you both work together to repair the damage.
Be your partners primary support person.
Have a ‘team mentality'. When there are difficulties, talk about what ‘we' need to do about it.
Be prepared to listen and be influenced by what is important to your partner, just as your partner needs to be influenced by you.
Plan date nights or some form of regular time together doing something you both enjoy. Where possible add in some adventure or fun occasionally. If the adrenaline gets going so does the sexual desire!
A miscarriage is a traumatic event that can seriously affect a women’s mental health. Miscarriage impacts approximately 15% of all pregnancies and has a significant impact on a women’s mental health, often leading to perinatal grief symptoms. Women may experience emotional numbness, a yearning for the lost child, battle with difficult emotions and struggle to find meaning. Some women recover more rapidly than others from the psychological burden of a miscarriage. Why?
Mindfulness involves choosing to pay attention, with kindness, acceptance and curiosity to whatever is happening right now and remembering the patterns or habits you observe. While one of the benefits of Mindfulness is often a feeling of being calm or relaxed, the purpose is more about gaining insight.
Often women attend their GP or Obstetrician during pregnancy and talk about the health of their baby. They may raise their concerns about morning sickness, cramps, headaches, backaches, or other physical discomforts, however few women talk about the difficulties they are facing coping with their changing, and often difficult, emotions. It can be frustrating and exhausting to shift from one emotion to another, and be unable to explain what emotion you are feeling and why. Sometimes even feeling guilty about having particular thoughts or emotions.
A special interest for me is working with women and their partners during what can be a joyful time, a stressful time or a devastating time. I enjoy being able to work with individuals or couples, in a safe and secure environment, to discuss concerns regarding conceiving and raising a family. Preconception counselling can be a highly valuable way of communicating concerns, hopes and fears, and being able to hear your partners.