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The Hallmarks Of A Resilient Relationship: Harmony Rupture Repair

The Cycle of A Couple’s Relationship

“Happily Ever After.”

relationships cycle & gay couple counseling can helpHow many times have you heard that phrase?

Speaking for myself, it is many, many, many. And every single time I hear it, I wince.

Since the phrase is used so often to describe the hopes and expectations of people in relationships, I do find myself wincing a lot.

Every couples therapist knows that happiness in a long-term relationship does not come easily. Both members of every couple must fight for their love each and every day. Anyone who has successfully navigated a successful long-term relationship or marriage knows that there is no such thing as happily ever after.

Nevertheless, common culture continues to promote the notion that when you find the right person, things should naturally flow in a positive direction. Nothing could be further from the truth.

One of the worst enemies of happiness in a relationship is stagnation. The couple that stops growing together ends up growing apart. In every successful relationship, each member of the couple must be challenging the other to grow and change in meaningful ways.

It’s not about changing into a different person for your partner; it’s only about listening to your partner’s feelings and needs and making an honest effort, out of love, to meet them. As long as your partner is asking for healthy things (even if they’re painful or difficult), this is a process of pushing each other to grow. That is the hallmark of a successful relationship.

When you are truly in a relationship that is working, there must be friction to keep both partners growing. The friction shows that you are being honest with each other and that you are willing to fight for the relationship. The changes you make for each other are both an expression of your love and a product of your love.

Every healthy relationship follows a predictable, productive pattern. This pattern is the hallmark of a healthy, stimulating, growing, resilient relationship.

Harmony — Rupture — Repair

  • Harmony: This is everyone’s favorite part of the relationship cycle. It’s the feeling you have when things are going smoothly between you and your partner. You’re enjoying each other’s company and you are getting along. No fighting, no friction. This is what people are imagining when they utter the phrase “happy ever after.” And it’s the picture that popular culture likes to paint of successful relationships. Everyone would like to believe that this is how relationships are supposed to be. But actually, this stage must be earned not just once, but over and over again.
  • Rupture: It is actually not humanly possible for the Harmony stage to last forever. Every single coupling of human beings on this earth is on a path toward rupture. It’s not a matter of whether a rupture will occur; it is a matter of when. But the good news is that ruptures are not bad. They are actually opportunities to deepen, enrich and enliven the relationship. The rupture holds the passion and the clash brings out the feeling. And feeling is the glue and spice that makes every relationship valuable and worthwhile.
  • Repair: The Repair phase is where the real work happens. What do you need your partner to do to fix this problem, and what can you do to make him happy? Working out a new understanding or a compromise, or deciding to work toward a change communicates love and care, shows commitment and builds trust with each other. When you do this phase right, you continually learn more and more relationship skills that you can use over and over again, making problems become less and less painful as they happen. Going through rough waters together and coming through to the other side intact propels you into the Harmony phase, where you enjoy the love and dedication and care that has been there all along.

If you grew up in a family that avoided conflict, squelched emotions or discouraged meaningful conversation (Childhood Emotional Neglect, or CEN), you are at great risk of avoiding or squelching the healthy rupture your relationship needs or being unable to initiate and/or tolerate the meaningful conversation to repair it.

If you grew up with CEN, learning that rupture in your adult relationship is not a failure but an opportunity can open doors to building valuable communication and emotion skills and to a much more rewarding and resilient relationship.

Harmony – Rupture – Repair – Harmony – Rupture – Repair – Harmony – Rupture – Repair. On and on it goes, one phase following another. It’s not a sign of a problem, but a sign of health and love and commitment.

The harmony brings the joy, the rupture stokes the passion and the repair builds the trust.

And that’s what “Happily Ever After” actually looks like. For more info on counseling for individuals or couples, make an appointment.

Couples & Marriage Counseling For Change

Need a Couples Therapist to Help With Your Relationship Problems?

Worried You Might Break Up?

Are you looking for couples counseling in Chicago because you are concerned about your relationship? Worried that your marriage may not make it over the long term? Are you tired of arguing, bickering or worse – the silent treatment?

Perhaps you are struggling in your marriage or long term relationship. Maybe you have reached a place of being sick and tired of the same old arguments that repeat themselves over and over again.

The anger, resentment and dissatisfaction may have you thinking to yourself: “Is this really worth it?”

Try and you might, attempts to fix your relationship problems just don’t seem to be working. The criticism, blaming and apathy have reached a point where the both of you are completely over it.

And while there still may be love between you, it just doesn’t seem like it will be enough to make positive change.

If all all of this sounds familiar, you have come to the right place.

Continue Reading.

25 Suggestions for Living a Contented Life by Managing Emotions: Part 1 | The Emotionally Sensitive Person

Emotionally sensitive people react to events quickly and with intense emotions, and then have difficulty getting their emotional reactions to subside. Finding ways to manage emotions effectively can decrease the pain they experience.

For more information about counseling and psychology, check out my site at

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Erectile Dysfunction and Dating – Dating When You Live with Erectile Dysfunction

No One Is Interested in a Guy with ED
It’s easy to feel this way. It’s what we’re told every day of our lives. The prototype attractive or desirable person is so carefully described to us in every book we read, TV show we watch, advertisement we gloss over, and lesson we learn, that it becomes a “norm” without us ever questioning it. But consider the fact that as many as one in five men experience ED and many of them are partnered in both loving and sexually satisfying relationships, and know that as an essential truth, this one doesn’t hold up.

For more information about counseling and psychology, check out my site at

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Confused About Sexual Orientation – Making Sense of Sexual Orientation Confusion

In public, most people present themselves as having one single sexual orientation. Society, families, and even our closest friends put a lot of pressure on us to choose one sexual orientation and stick with it. But privately, many of us have questions and some confusion about our own sexual orientation — and not just when we’re younger.

For more information about counseling and psychology, check out my site at

Dealing with Sexual Shame – Techniques for Dealing with Sexual Shame

It’s probably safe to say that everyone experiences some degree of shame about sex. Whether we feel shame for what (or who) we desire, shame for things that we chose to do, shame for things that were done against our will to us, or any number of other sexual thoughts, feelings, and desires, if we want to explore our own sexuality we’re likely going to come up against feelings of shame.

For more information about counseling and psychology, check out my site at

Posted via email from rmarcandrews’s posterous