Imagine your wedding day. You are staring into your partner’s eyes, confident that you have found the one that you want to share the rest of your life with. In that moment, you couldn’t imagine the feelings of anger, resentment, confusion that are bound to occur at some point within the relationship. You feel love, happiness, bliss. You two are a team. Together you will defeat the odds, together you can conquer any obstacle.
Now fast forward to your most recent argument. Were the two of you acting as a team during this? Was it you and your partner against this problem/obstacle or was it a you vs me battle? A common problem that occurs in every relationship is that we get focused on our own needs and forget we are in this as a team. We feel like our partners are intentionally doing things to hurt us, make us angry, drive us crazy. As mentioned in previous posts (let’s not assume, mind read, or draw conclusions) instead, let’s focus on the goal. If we are to align ourselves with our partner against a common enemy (the problem), solutions are much more readily available.
At times I hear clients say, but my partner is the problem. Is that true? Is it your partner or the actions they are doing? I ask what things your partner does to cause problems. Here I get action items – they come home late, they don’t call, they don’t help with the kids, the house chores, etc. In all of these examples, behaviors are the problem, not a person.
Partner + Partner VS Problem (behaviors, others, kids)
Partner VS Partner
Me VS You
Him VS Her
Us (my family) VS Them (partner’s family)
Realign the equation. Become a united team.