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I don't think our relationship can be repaired without counselling

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  • I don't think our relationship can be repaired without counselling

    Starting a new thread about this because the title of my last thread is now very far from the topics towards the end.

    If you haven't read the other two thrilling threads then here is a precis;
    We have significant relationship problems, neither of us is happy and the treatment I get is borderline emotional abuse.I have spoken to two therapists and my mother about the situation and all agree that couples therapy is probably the only way to save the relationship. In the past my SO was very against the idea, as he believed that I was implying that everything was his fault and he needed to be fixed but he believes he is NORMAL and I'm the problem.

    After some big fights where it became obvious that our communication is woefully inadequate, and that I am a constant disappointment to him, I dangled the idea of couples counselling. I phrased it in such a way that I expressed how I wanted to be able to see things from his point of view, and understand his thinking, and he didn't say no. I asked him to think about it. It has been three weeks since that conversation, and I have raised the question only twice, asking if he had had a chance to think about it. In three weeks he has been too busy, too stressed and too tired to think about it. He actually got very agitated when I asked him.
    I'm not sure how to proceed. My original thought was that if he refused then we'd seriously need to consider a breakup if he said yes, we try and use it as a tool to help fix things, but if he refuses to answer then I don't know what to do. I can't force him to decide but I don't believe he hasn't thought about it. I think the thinking was done immediately and he just doesn't want to tell me. If the thinking hasn't been done then why not? What could be more important?
    “...choose to believe in your own myth
    your own glamour
    your own spell
    a young woman who does this
    (even if she is just pretending)
    has everything....”
    ― Francesca Lia Block, How to (Un)cage a Girl

  • You are thinking very clearly and I agree with you that couples therapy is the best way to improve communication skills and the relationship. I also admire the manner in which you brought up the subject.

    In my view, your SO has thought about it extensively but sees the danger in any answer he gives to you. Based in your posts, your SO hates to be criticized and does not want to confront the fact that he has (at a minimum) shared responsibility in all of the problems. I am also sure that, like most men, he does not want an "outsider" to know his business. Every fiber of his being wants to say heck no to therapy. However, he might be getting the hint that saying no will have consequences that he may not be able to bluster his way out of. He just wants it to go away.

    My thought is that you need to put a time frame on the decision and explain your thought process just as you have in your post. The two of you have communication issues that prevents you from working out the common problems of a relationship. Unless those are fixed the relationship can't be worked on and will fail.

    Despite all his abusiveness, he loves you and does not want to lose you. He probably thinks that therapy will be the catalyst that ends the relationship. I am not sure how, or if you can, diffuse his fears.
    "The only consistent feature of all of your dissatisfying relationships is you." Despair.com "Dysfunction"

    Comment


    • I'd take the no answer as a no, cali. What else can you possibly interpret it as?
      [FONT=Trebuchet MS][COLOR="#800080"][B][SIZE=4]Woman trapped inside a woman's body![/SIZE][/COLOR][/B][/FONT]

      Comment


      • One thing that kind of shocked me is that he mentioned that he feels his colleague ( with a temper problem) needs to see a counsellor about his daughters health problems and the emotional impact on him. I've never heard SO advocate any kind of therapy before so maybe he really IS thinking about it?
        “...choose to believe in your own myth
        your own glamour
        your own spell
        a young woman who does this
        (even if she is just pretending)
        has everything....”
        ― Francesca Lia Block, How to (Un)cage a Girl

        Comment


        • I agree with effy. He needs to know what the consequences of this decision are. What if he says no, you then say it's over, and then he suddenly changes his mind and says yes. If you lay it out for him, then he knows that his only option is a yes because a no is agreeing to a breakup. If he still does not give you an answer, then that is a no.
          Freedom is just another word for nothing left to lose - Kris Kristofferson and Fred Foster (sung by Janis Joplin)

          Comment


          • You know we only get to live once as far as I know. We are not practicing this life and sometimes it's not worth the effort to try to resolve it. It sounds like the ball is clearly in his court. However there is always another side to every story and we are only hearing one. The old Risk vs Reward formula comes into play. I can't figure out what the potential reward is going to be if your life is going to be in turmoil all the time. The risk is continuing to put more time into trying to find a workable solution and delaying the inevitable and reducing the amount of time that your life will be sane.

            As Sweet Brown said so succinctly, "A'int nobody got time for dat!"

            Comment


            • calibri~, please remind me of the nature of your relationship. Are you married? Children? Own a home together?
              "Those sowing seed with tears
              Will reap with a joyful shout." - Psalm 126

              Comment


              • Stillness. We are unmarried, no children, been together about 10 years, lived together 2-3 years in my flat.
                “...choose to believe in your own myth
                your own glamour
                your own spell
                a young woman who does this
                (even if she is just pretending)
                has everything....”
                ― Francesca Lia Block, How to (Un)cage a Girl

                Comment


                • There is lots of history and love in that relationship. I can understand the difficulty in letting go.
                  "The only consistent feature of all of your dissatisfying relationships is you." Despair.com "Dysfunction"

                  Comment


                  • If he was to attend any of those types of therapy situations he in his mind stands to lose face, ground. The therapist or you will point things at him and he's not about to let that happen. For now, he is in control and that's the way that he likes it.

                    Love is a strange thing. Some people are in-capable of truly loving even when they have someone next to them that clearly loves them. To belittle and keep a person down below you, allows a person to feel above you. For me, life is about equality.

                    He can not meet you half way and be your other half. He has to be above you at all times.

                    You in my opinion are correct. He thought about it when you said it and dismissed it instantly.
                    PUT A LITTLE 'LIKE' IN MY SOUL!

                    Comment


                    • Some people have a natural aversion to therapy and if he has this aversion, it is unlikely the session will magically transform everything. You may be open to it. He clearly is not. It may work for you and I do not think for him. If he has said "No" then I think you have to surmise he knows his own mind and trying to suggest it otherwise or infer a maybe or trick him into a commitment is simply not rational. I know it is not a time where you want to be mindful of these things and you are feeling terrible but if a person decides something you have to at least consider they had reasons behind their decision.

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by ChristinaHedge View Post
                        Some people have a natural aversion to therapy and if he has this aversion, it is unlikely the session will magically transform everything. You may be open to it. He clearly is not. It may work for you and I do not think for him. If he has said "No" then I think you have to surmise he knows his own mind and trying to suggest it otherwise or infer a maybe or trick him into a commitment is simply not rational. I know it is not a time where you want to be mindful of these things and you are feeling terrible but if a person decides something you have to at least consider they had reasons behind their decision.
                        There is nothing magical about therapy and it does take hard work on both sides for therapy to work. However, if not therapy for them, then what? He will not communicate or compromise with her at all now. If Calibri bends to his "natural aversion to therapy", the relationship will be over because nothing will ever get better. To me, the only rational choice is to get him to try therapy by whatever means necessary. Once there, a good therapist might be able to get him to open up a bit.
                        "The only consistent feature of all of your dissatisfying relationships is you." Despair.com "Dysfunction"

                        Comment


                        • I'm replying to a comment that Effy made in another thread of mine here:

                          "Why not share here who you were, what you wanted in life"

                          OK. Now I have had a few lovely days with my crazy family and got a chance to relax and shake off the unnecessary negativity and cobwebs.

                          Let me tell you who I think I am (deep down) and what i want from life:

                          I am usually down-to-earth and calm about life with episodes of fanciful escapism - drifting off into imaginary worlds, falling into stories and painting and songs, and wallowing in the luxury of expression and connection to the artist / writer etc. I am a secret romantic, I fall in love too easily (platonically or romantically) and am loyal to a fault - I will do almost anything to make someone I care about smile. I can be silly and sarcastic but also painfully blunt at times. I am comfortable with my body, lifestyle and personality. If I am attacked or hurt in any way, I have a tendancy towards aggression and (usually) deftly deal assertively with possible situations that put me at a disadvantage. I am impatient and have a very short attention span for most things, but at times my fascination with certain topics can border on monomania. I'm intelligent and educated but have a terrible memory. I like to be creative and to help others. I'd rather live with animals and books than humans, and I will kick your derriere if you hurt someone I care about.

                          In my life I want to:
                          be healthy
                          be happy
                          minimise stress
                          be accepted
                          be respected (for work and integrity)
                          be financially comfortable (ie can afford bills etc)
                          be loved
                          be trusted
                          to have someone(s) that I can accept, trust, respect, love
                          be somewhat independent
                          travel to new but not dangerous places
                          spend as much time as possible with animals
                          sleep well and wake up refreshed
                          be proud of the work and art that I produce
                          “...choose to believe in your own myth
                          your own glamour
                          your own spell
                          a young woman who does this
                          (even if she is just pretending)
                          has everything....”
                          ― Francesca Lia Block, How to (Un)cage a Girl

                          Comment


                          • Tell us more about your art when you have a chance cali. I love the idea of that being a regular part of people's lives.
                            [FONT=Trebuchet MS][COLOR="#800080"][B][SIZE=4]Woman trapped inside a woman's body![/SIZE][/COLOR][/B][/FONT]

                            Comment


                            • I write poetry, and make pencil drawings and watercolours. Some of them are ok. I posted them on a blog of mine for fun...except the more abstract / personal paintings, they are currently private (I'd be horrified if someone stole them, but if one of my horse or animal paintings get plagiarised its not the end of the world). I also have a 5-foot wide oil painting of my eye in the centre of a storm that I did when I was still at school . My most accomplished art is probably of horses, but my most treasured is the other stuff - the faeries, the monsters, the nightmares etc.
                              “...choose to believe in your own myth
                              your own glamour
                              your own spell
                              a young woman who does this
                              (even if she is just pretending)
                              has everything....”
                              ― Francesca Lia Block, How to (Un)cage a Girl

                              Comment

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