There are times in life when we feel stuck or lost. We might experience that sense of loss in our relationships, our jobs or more generally in life. We might feel anxious or depressed. We might find our relationships and sex lives have become more challenging and less fulfilling. Our behaviours might have become addictive. We might experience an overall absence of personal happiness and fulfilment.
Alternatively we may feel that it is difficult to cope with our lives but don’t necessarily know why. We might find ourselves repeating destructive patterns or have come to recognise that many of our thoughts, feelings and behaviours are painful or confusing.
It can be difficult to talk to family or friends about what is troubling us. We might feel embarrassed or experience shame. There may be things that we don’t want to admit or face even to ourselves. These are some of the times when seeking help from a trained professional can make a difference.
It can be helpful to talk with a qualified counsellor/therapist in a supportive and non-judgmental environment in order to gain a better understanding of your situation and work towards finding some healthy solutions.
Most people use these terms interchangeably as both cover a range of talking therapies. Counselling is typically used to describe short-term work. It tends to focus on what you are experiencing right now. It may not reference your past, at least not in-depth. If working short-term, you will probably agree with your therapist how many sessions you intend to work together, which can be anywhere from 12 to 24 weeks. Counselling can also be quite structured.
Therapy is typically used to describe longer term or open-ended work. It will focus on a deeper awareness of emotional issues, and look at the foundation of the problem(s). It requires a willingness to consider the past and its impact on the present. The goal may be to help to resolve past experiences in order to lay the foundations for a brighter future.
What matters most is that an individual or couple chooses to work with a professionally qualified individual and with whom they feel comfortable.
Most relationships go through difficult times. Each individual in the couple can end up feeling frustrated, stuck, isolated, angry and/or resentful.
We may find ourselves struggling to communicate effectively which leads to more frequents arguments and/or a pattern of blaming each other. Anger and resentment can grow in this space.
Sometimes the problems are of a sexual nature where perhaps there are differences in sexual desire within the relationship.
A couple may be struggling to come to terms with the impact of infidelity on the relationship.
Sometimes the reasons for feeling stuck are hard to identify but there is a feeling that one has just drifted apart from their partner or spouse. In today’s forever “on-the-go” world, managing busy careers and juggling family responsibilities can overwhelm us, both as individuals and in our relationship as a couple.
I offer relationship counselling to same-sex and heterosexual individuals and couples and my clients come from a wide range of different backgrounds, cultures and religions.