Therapy for Couples in Recovery
The relationship one has with alcohol, drugs, internet porn, or gambling can have an enormous negative impact on both partners. There might be years of lies and hiding, betrayals and hurts that would make it difficult for both partners. Such difficulty in the relationship can also contribute to the continued cycle of addiction and relapse.
When relationships aren’t going well, we can get stuck in a vicious cycle of blame and withdrawal. We may feel like our partner isn’t there for us when we turn to them to discuss our needs or when we need them for support. So we get angry, criticize and blame. Or we may begin to feel that there is nothing we can do right, that we are both better off staying away from each other. So the partners may withdraw often through work, drinking, or internet trying to keep the tension manageable. In both cases, each partners may feel like they are not really loved, or accepted which increase the disconnection between them.
Whether one chooses abstinence, rehabilitation center, medication assisted treatment, 12 step program, or harm reduction, the relationship with their partner is affected. Couple therapy offer the opportunity to heal old wounds and to create a new relationship based on trust and security.
As an EFT therapist, I look at the negative cycle and hold space for each partner’s pain and suffering. Together we can unpack the emotional messages that leave you and your partner injured. Couple therapy will help each of you to “listen with the heart.” which means listening not for the literal meaning of a partner’s words but for the feelings that lie beneath. As partners begin turning to one another, we can transform your relationship from one of disconnection to one of effective connection emotionally and sexually.
Concerns commonly addressed
- Past or current traumatic experiences
- Guilt & Shame
- Disconnection within oneself and with partner
- Feeling profound hurt and betrayed
- Feeling of hopelessness and helplessness
“We readily feel for the suffering child but rarely see the child in the adult craving for a felt sense of connection. What makes us fall into despair isn’t our distress per se. It’s feeling lonely in our pain”
What to Expect
01 – FIRST STAGES
Through our first few sessions, I am taking the time to unpack my clients’ reality and motif of consultation gently. These first sessions are fundamental because therapeutic work can only happen if there is a sense of comfort and trust in the room. While learning about my clients, I assess the situation, the presence of emotional patterns, recurrent challenges and clients’ strengths. I call this first stage de-escalation as we are looking to frame and identify the negative cycle that keeps individuals and couples stuck. At the end of this stage, clients begin to recognize their cycle as the enemy of their situation – are capable to step out of the cycle as it happens – express hope – and show openness to their partner or other individuals in their life.
02 – MIDDLE STAGES
During the second stage, clients begin to feel the benefits of the therapy. Individuals and couples can now access and engage with their emotional experience. Emotions are no longer foreign or frightening. The focus on this stage is restructuring the bond within oneself or between the partners. Clients describe it as the opening phase through which their fears are no longer triggering. They can be responsive and emotionally engaged with one another in a more natural manner. An inner sense of peace and bonding events mark the transition toward the third stage.
03 – ENDING STAGES
With the need for closeness being restored, clients are consolidating their therapeutic gain. They enact new positions in their ways of living and engage in constructive cycles with others, including their partner. The end of the final stage is no better to describe by the ability to turn towards a significant other in time of need with ease and comfort. In addition, couples are offering mutual support to each other and shape new solutions to pragmatic issues.
If you align with any of the above, and ready to step in a journey to live fully and freely, schedule a phone consultation to get started.