Yesterday’s counselling session went really well. The lady was really nice. She started by asking us why we chose the other person.
My husband said, “because she’s a cutie,” and it made me laugh. I’ve been trying to get him to answer this question for ages. He also said because I’m passionate and fun.
I told her I chose him because he’s a good person, he always does his best, he makes me want to be a better person, he’s fun to hang out with and brings out the best in me. I started to cry while I told her this.
“Are these good tears or bad tears?”
“Good tears, I love him.”
We focused on changing our perspectives, changing the negatives into positives. I have to work on being a bit more organized (ugh) and he needs to work on not getting upset when plans change.
We didn’t really focus much on the name calling, which disappointed me a bit. To be fair, it was only a one hour appointment so we couldn’t really get into everything. We’ll be making another appointment in a couple of weeks.
She did tell us that we have a good energy. We weren’t nervous, we sat next to each other. He put his foot under mine to keep my feet warm. We laughed a lot. It was really good.
At the end of the session, she asked us what we were both taking away from this session. My husband said being a good role model for the children. (I had mentioned that I felt like his behaviour, and the derogatory way he treats me is affecting the children.) I said unity. Working together to get the house chores done, and working together instead of against each other.
Overall it went really well and I’m glad. I’m looking forward to the next appointment.
When I called to make the appointment, (a third party company that sets us up with the counsellor) the woman on the phone asked me if I would be interested in some reading material. Being a bibliophile I couldn’t say no.
It was delivered yesterday just as we were leaving for the counselling. It’s a great package. It came with two books, The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work by John M. Gottman, PH.D. and Divorce Busting by Michele Weiner-Davis. It also came with a little booklet for us to go through called Enriching Your Marriage, and another one called Enhancing Your Relationship. There were also come cute little “I love you” coupons.
I particularly like Enhancing Your Relationship because when I opened it up, it literally spoke to me.
“Warning Signs of Destructive Communication Patterns: Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse in a Relationship
– Criticism – attacking someone’s personality or character, rather than a specific behaviour and usually with blame. Criticism is just a step across the line from one of the healthiest things couples engage in-complaining (airing anger and disagreement).
– Contempt – intending to insult and psychologically abuse your partner. Common signs include hostile humour, sarcasm, sibtle put-downs, and body language such as sneers.
– Defensiveness – a natural response, which can include denying responsibility; making excuses; cross-complaining; yes-butting; whining and repeating oneself (nagging).
– Stonewalling – simply refusing to respond or putting up walls. When this becomes a typical pattern, it is destructive because one or both partners are disengaging from any meaningful communication with each other.”
I would say that my husband is the first two, and I’m the second two. I’m glad we went though. I think we’re going to learn a lot from it.
I’m glad I have a partner who’s on board with me too. I know my husband is going to read these books with me and we’ll be able to work on his hurtful words. I’ve been told I’m a button-pusher too so I’ll be working on that.
The last exercise we did was to pull a card from a stack of cards she had. I pulled out Hope. My husband pulled out Cheerfulness. We read the cards and discussed how we have hope for the future of our relationship and how to bring more cheerfulness to it.