Let’s be honest – relationships can be hard work and can be a frequent source of unhappiness. Many of my clients seek counselling for problems in their relationships – often in their partnerships, but just as often in their relationships with their friends or family. Common issues include:
- Not being able to say ‘no’ to the demands of others because of ‘guilt’ from hurting their feelings or fear that they will disapprove of us and see us as bad or selfish.
- Not feeling able to express one’s own needs and wants for fear of upsetting others or not feeling worthy enough.
- Feeling of being controlled by others or as the ‘weak’ one in the relationship who always gives in.
- Feeling unable to receive care / affection / love from others – or being in a relationship where the other person seems unable to receive your care, affection or love.
- Constantly having to rescue other people – whether emotionally or financially.
Quite often we have been taught – by our parents / teachers / society in general – that if we express our own needs and expect them to be met that we are one or more of the following: selfish, disobedient, hurting other people, an angry or demanding person. This can be especially true for women who are often expected to comply happily with the needs of their partners and families, but it is equally true for many men.
Counselling can be really helpful to improve your sense of self-worth and strength in managing your relationships healthily. Areas frequently covered in counselling relating to relationships are:
- Putting limits on what you can give – without feeling guilty or ‘bad’.
- Taking responsibility for your feelings.
- Not taking responsibility for other people’s feelings.
If you would like to discuss in more detail how counselling can help you be more effective and fulfilled in your relationships, I’d love to hear from you, please drop me a line or give me a call.
*Please note I do not offer couples counselling. Relationships can, and do, change when one person changes their behaviour, and I believe individual counselling is often the most valuable place to start to make these changes.