Therapy isn’t just for relationships in crisis - it can provide support for all kinds of normal life changes and challenges, and help you and your partner become closer by improving your communication with one another. Having a third party committed to helping you understand one another can shed light on factors contributing to dysfunction without shaming either party. Differences that may have felt impossible to address when alone with your partner can be much easier to deal with when you have the support and guidance of a therapist. If you worry that by bringing up difficult issues with your partner you may alienate or hurt them, it’s worthwhile to consider giving both of you the therapeutic space and support to breathe and understand your partner’s perspective.
A therapist can set ground rules for your conversations that prioritize honesty and compassion. By practicing thinking from your partner’s point of view and pausing before reacting impulsively to their words or actions, you can learn to communicate your needs while also considering your partner’s.
As your relationship with your significant other changes naturally over time, you’ll find yourselves in uncharted territory as you navigate how to share time, finances, and external relationships with friends and family. A therapist can provide a safe space for you and your partner to vent your fears and anxieties about these issues and find common ground to move forward.
Our most intimate relationships can be a source of comfort, validation and fulfillment, or of anxiety, embarassment and isolation. Past trauma, changes in sexual function and desires, or jealousy and infidelity can lead to guilt, shame, and anger that jeopardizes your bond with your partner. A therapist can help you vent your thoughts and emotions in a way that allows you and your partner to process difficult feelings and reach mutual understanding.
Boundaries are important both internal and external to a healthy relationship. What you’re willing to share with your partner, and your connections to friends, family, and past partners both in person and online can raise difficult feelings of insecurity and resentment. A therapist can help you and your partner understand and respect each other's boundaries so that you can strengthen your bond while maintaining your sense of self and independence.