When Robert and Rachael came to see me for marriage therapy, Robert wanted a divorce. Rachael wanted Robert to attend therapy with her to give their relationship “one last shot.”

Robert was reluctant to attend therapy as he had lost all hope for the relationship. However, he agreed to see me out of respect for Rachael.

In our first couples session, Robert was quiet while Rachael brought up her complaints about Robert. He worked too much, didn’t talk to her enough, and didn’t listen to her. He “hid” in his home office after they had argued so he didn’t have to deal with their problems.

When I asked Robert to share his concerns about the relationship he said he was never “good enough” for Rachael and never would be. Regardless of what he did, he believed Rachael would never be happy.

I asked Robert if he would want the relationship if things improved between the two if them. Robert said he would, but he had lost hope that it was possible. Since Rachael wanted to work on the relationship, I asked Robert if he would agree to attend a few couples therapy sessions to see if they could begin to turn things around.

Robert agreed to attend sessions. Rachael was relieved.

For the next 3 sessions, we explored the problems in their relationship. It became clear that they both loved each other but didn’t have the skills to communicate effectively.

Using Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT), I helped Rachael and Robert connect on an emotional level. As sessions progressed, they began to see each other’s point of view, which helped them develop more caring and compassion for each other. By the end of the 3rd marriage counselling session, they felt they were making progress and Robert said that a glimmer of hope had returned.They both agreed to continue therapy to see how much more progress they could make.

As therapy continued, Rachael started to back off on her criticisms of Robert, and Robert responded by being more open and listening to what Rachael said.

Rachael and Robert started to do more things together and began feeling closer to each other.

When our couples therapy sessions ended a few months later, Robert and Rachael stated they felt like they were getting to know each other for the first time.

They reported that they had never felt more connected to each other or happier in the relationship.

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