“Knowing when to walk away, is wisdom. Being able to, is courage. Walking away with grace, and your head held high is dignity.” Ritu Ghatourey
By the time people find their way to my work, they’ve typically been struggling in their marriages for years, sometimes decades. But how do you know when your marriage is over?
There are probably gazillions of articles written that will give you the three most common attributes in a relationship that are tell-tale signs that your marriage is over (or should be over, in the writer’s opinion).
I don’t think that’s helpful at ...continue reading...
“Most of us are imprisoned by something. We’re living in darkness until something flips on the switch.” Wynonna Judd
I love the idea of having someone to walk beside in this life.
I love that we get to be a witness to one another’s lives.
And I love that we get to share the joys and sorrows of life with another human being.
But the institution of marriage is sort of a peculiar thing to me…
Marriage was originally created as an alliance between two families, where the property rights, money, and bloodlines could be secured within the ...continue reading...
When my client, who I’ll refer to as Vicky began working with me, she was trying to determine if there was any hope for her marriage that had been on the ropes for years. They were separated and ready to file papers, but she was still holding on and wasn’t sure why.One week later, her husband told her that from his perspective, he was done and the marriage was over. As you can imagine, the finality of that sent her reeling…thinking she had just wasted the last twenty years with a man who didn’t love her anymore. After the shock ...continue reading...
“Shame is a soul eating emotion.” Carl Gustav Jung
My new client, who I’ll refer to as Paula, recently found out that her husband has been having an affair with another woman for at least ten years. As you can imagine, she’s devastated.
Ten years together isn’t a fling or a simple indiscretion; it’s a relationship.
Paula is wondering why she ignored the signs.
She’s wondering where exactly the marriage broke in order for her 30-year marriage to be vulnerable to an affair.
She’s wondering how she’ll ever be able to trust again.
She vacillates between blaming herself ...continue reading...
“Rarely does anything get properly cooked on the back burner.” Susan Gale
Back when most of us got married, it felt like some sort of an accomplishment. We checked that box with a buoyant optimism and then quickly got busy with the other important life goals and building a life together.
We build a home together and buy new furniture.
We get a pet.
We often operate on stress and fumes as we achieve at work, reaching for greater and greater success each in our own way.
At some point, we begin creating a family together and bring new ...continue reading...
“Being both soft and strong is an accomplishment that very few have mastered.” Yasmin Mogahed
In my first marriage, I was a woman who was strong and capable and driven. I was a marketing executive climbing the corporate ladder who led large teams of people and prided herself on being the one who could GSD (aka: Get Shit Done).
As you can imagine, there is no “off” switch that helped me to soften on my way home to my husband after work each night, so I unconsciously brought that same controlling energy and GSD approach into my marriage. ...continue reading...
“If I was meant to be controlled, I would have come with a remote.” Genereux Philip
Many of my clients have controlling husbands.
Their husbands are afraid that their wives are not being fully honest, so they watch their every move and monitor their phones.
Their husbands are afraid that their wives will spend too much or spend on something they don’t agree with buying, so they control the finances.
Their husbands are afraid of what other people will think if their picture-perfect life changes.
It goes the other way too; sometimes women attempt to control their husband’s ...continue reading...
“The only way love can last a lifetime is if it’s unconditional.” Stephen Kendrick
Loving unconditionally is easy to say, living it is so much more difficult.
When my husband is telling me how beautiful I am and doing the things that make me happy, I am loving toward him and think loving thoughts about him. When he does something that makes me feel hurt or tells how frustrated he is with me, I shut down or punch back and become hurtful in return.
That’s loving conditionally.
When we feel heard and understood, that feels like standing in ...continue reading...
“Once all struggle is grasped, miracles are possible.” Mao Zedong
If you were to look at the national averages for divorce rates in the US for people in the healthcare profession, it would show them beating the national averages (Physicians and Surgeons divorcing at a rate of 21.8% and Healthcare professionals 31.6% according to quartz.com*). However, that hasn’t been my experience.
I have doctors and surgeons, wives of doctors and surgeons, nurses and therapists as clients. I also have teachers, administrators, corporate execs and other professions, but people in the healthcare field certainly make up more than ...continue reading...
“Each night ask yourself…when did you withhold love when you might have given it?” Marianne Williamson
My client, Marilyn, told me it had been at least 5 years since she and her husband had sex.
She said they fall asleep each night lying next to one another, but feeling a million miles away from him.
Through tears Marilyn shared that she hadn’t been held in at least that long.
That’s 1825 days without affection.
1825 days without physical closeness and connection.
1825 days without feeling seen and understood.
1825 days without emotional support, intimacy and vulnerability.
1825 days ...continue reading...