Focusing on the healthy areas of a relationship in couples counseling.
Are you able to identify those areas in your marriage and relationship that are healthy?
Couples and families come to counseling with a strong desire to change those aspects in their relationship that are creating emotional pain and conflict. It is easy for people to focus and be hypersensitive to those issues in the relationship that are troublesome and viewed as not working.
Partners, spouses and other family members are often quick to tell their loved ones what they need to change. In couples and family therapy, counselors will sometimes redirect clients to those areas and parts of the relationship that are healthy and working well. This approach helps to highlight those positive areas in the relationship and help clients to feel more optimistic and encouraged that the relationship can change during the therapy process. One significant and sensitive concern in every marriage and relationship is money.
How do you manage the money and finances in your marriage and family?
Finances and money have long been identified and understood to be a source of great stress and anxiety in a relationship. Everyone needs money and it is necessary and vital to our survival. Without money, we will be homeless, hungry and have more serious health issues. A couple with a healthy economic relationship will make money decisions together and not place or surrender those decisions to one partner. Couples will openly disclose and have complete transparency with all of their money and assets. Some couples place all of their income and investments into joint accounts. Each partner has access to those assets and the couple shares the responsibility in making financial decisions. This approach of joint responsibility and transparency ensures both partners benefit from all financial arrangements. If there are separate accounts, investments and individual retirement accounts within the relationship, couples should share financial information with their partners. Any changes with the assets should be discussed with their partner. This transparency helps to make the individual, who is not listed as the owner of the assets, feel protected valued and respected and not excluded from this part of their partner’s life. The more a couple shares their assets and demonstrate a strong mutual partnership with finances, the healthier the relationship will be.
In future blogs, I will write about other important areas of relationships such as intimacy, parenting, and extended families.