Nothing is as painful as being alone in a relationship. To be in the same room with a partner who is supposed to love me, and still be alone, is excruciating.
This loneliness is often caused by emotional disconnection. Sometimes this is preceded by a lot of fighting until we both give up and shut down. Other times the emotional connection has eroded over time resulting in an emotional chasm between us.
While couple therapy can help you communicate better, it can do so much more. Instead of focusing on only on communication skills, couple therapy has the ability to help couples cross that chasm in order to be emotionally connected and close again.
This can be scary to hope for. If I am used to being separated from the one I love, even though I long to be with them, it can be terrifying to hope that we can have closeness again. It’s scary to risk trying to cross the chasm. Focusing only on communication skills is a band-aid to achieve some improvement without having to risk. Couples therapy can offer so much more than band-aid; it can create safety to risk crossing the chasm and find ways to regain closeness. You don’t have to be alone in your relationship.
Elizabeth Polinsky, MSW, LCSW, is a marriage and couple therapist specializing in working with military members, veterans, and their families. Liz is located in Norfolk, Virginia, and provides online counseling services throughout Virginia, South Carolina, and Arkansas. She is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker Virginia (#0904011022), South Carolina (#11302), and Arkansas (#7735-C). She is also licensed as a Resident in Marriage and Family Therapy in Virginia (#0730000567) under the supervision of Dr. Victoria Holroyd at The Relationship Center at East Beach.
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Hey, I'm Elizabeth Polinsky and I am a marriage therapist in the Hampton Roads area. In Communicate & Connect, I provide educational tips for relationships, with special application to military relationships.