Safety is the key to facing our fears.
Fear can show up in a relationship in an interesting and paralyzing way when it prevents those involved from making deeper connections to his or her partner(s) and keeps issues at an impasse.
It can be scary to be vulnerable with a person with whom we are attached. We each come into a relationship with our own upbringing, and for some people that means not knowing emotional safety in another person to allow us to be vulnerable or it may mean not knowing how to provide safety for our partner(s) to be vulnerable with us.
Such a relationship stays very surface; that is, there is no deeper understanding, no chance to bring up difficult subjects that need to be addressed. That is how these relationships become stuck. The root of the problems are never discussed and even small issues become more complex because these issues are being ignored and left to grow.
A stronger emotional connection in a relationship can deepen the relationship. Working with a couple and family therapist can help all partners understand the importance of emotional safety in a relationship by fostering the necessities to allow vulnerability into the therapy room and ultimately outside of it as well.
There is some individual work to be done in the course of working with the relationship to help build trust in yourself, so that you will feel strong and ready to share and perhaps not flinch when your partner falters the first time, the first few times even. Part of making this work is having trust in yourself so that you can reach out to hear or talk to your significant other.
The therapists at PhiladelphiaMFT have been trained specifically to work with a couple in this manner. If you are tired of being scared to reach out or tired of not being received, give us a call for a free consultation and see if you are ready to make a change.
This topic of the week was written by Brian Swope, MFT