1. Trust has been broken.
One of the most common reasons for seeking couples therapy is the need for help in overcoming a major breach of trust. Perhaps it was infidelity in the form of sex; perhaps it was an emotional affair; perhaps it was a series of lies or deception about money. In any case, the rebuilding of the foundation of trust can often be helped by establishing a forum in which both parties are free to express their vulnerability.
2. Arguments are getting more frequent.
Maybe they are all "small" arguments, or maybe the blowouts are huge and leaving a lot of drama in their wake. Either way, it's the pattern of the increase that is important. It could indicate significant problems under the surface that aren't really being dealt with.
3. Communication is poor.
Do you constantly feel misunderstood or ignored? Our skilled counsellors can equip you with tools that will help you connect, hear, and understand each other much better daily.
4. Something feels wrong, but you're not sure what or why.
You don't feel as comfortable with your partner as you used to. Or you find yourself chronically resentful of them, but you're not sure why. These are often early signs that interactions are turning unhealthy or dysfunctional. It does not mean that one person is to blame, but rather that the relationship itself could use a tune-up, and our therapist's office is often a very beneficial place to start that process.
5. There is something you want your partner to know, but you've been unable to tell them.
A trained professional with a warm presence can often help you overcome your fears of sharing something with your partner.
6. One or both of you becomes dysfunctional during a conflict.
Maybe you or your partner shuts down, lashes out, or gets vengeful or passive-aggressive. Unfortunately, there is no shortage of dysfunctional ways to handle conflict — which serves to make the original problem that much worse.
7. You have gone through something devastating that is changing the way you connect with each other.
Sometimes the cruel double-whammy of a setback in life is that it's not just the setback itself that hurts, but also the effect it has on a marriage or partnership. Many couples go their separate ways after the heart-breaking loss of a child, for instance. Other times, it's long-term unemployment, a health crisis, or turmoil within one of the partner's families of origin. But keeping your bond strong in your relationship can only serve to unite you and give you additional strength to weather the storm that's come.
8.You feel stuck in bad patterns.
There is no limit to the number of patterns that partners develop in day-to-day life, from how and when they eat and sleep (and poor sleep is associated with marital problems), to how much time they spend apart or with others, to who handles various household chores, to how they interact with each other's families. Maybe a dysfunctional and unsatisfying pattern is as simple as one spouse always using the other as a sounding board about work complaints, but never bothering to reciprocate without losing interest. Or maybe it's more deep-seated, like a long-standing division of household chores that feels unfair (or infuriating.) The longer a pattern sets in, however, the more energy and time it will take to change it. Best to start early.
9. Emotional intimacy is gone or deeply diminished.
It is almost a cliché for two partners to feel like the "spark" is gone after spending a decade or more together, and that they are more roommates than soul mates. Sometimes this is just because the grind of daily life has begun to eclipse the ability to connect, and it's simply a matter of re-prioritizing. Other times, it can be more insidious and represent two partners who have quietly been growing apart, have been changing in incompatible ways for a long period, or have even learned to get their needs met elsewhere.
10. Physical intimacy is a problem.
Sexual issues can be both a symptom and a cause of relationship problems, which means it is often at the forefront of a couple's day-to-day complaints. Sometimes the change is obvious and frustrating — a couple goes from frequent physical intimacy to almost none, and it is jarring. Other times, it's a gradual freeze from being fulfilled by each other sexually to barely being satisfied. Sometimes there is more overt conflict, with one partner expressing frustration, a partner constantly being rejected, or sex being used as a bargaining tool. Whatever the issue, our skilled counsellors can help you start working on it.
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