It is fair to say that almost every couple in marriage and relationship counseling presents with one dynamic in common: they are fighting to win, not to make things better. All couples, whether dating or married experience a bumpy road at times. And, all can benefit from counseling. For married couples, there is more invested and, therefore, more to gain by seeking counseling.
There is truth in the cliché that most marriage difficulties center on sex, money and/or kids. When, in a “traditional” marriage, the parents met first and then had a child (as opposed to a blended family wherein one or more partner has children from a previous relationship). The bonding between the mother and child is incredibly strong. (We now know that Oxytocin is the hormone of bonding. It has such a strong bonding effect that there is now research into whether it can be used to facilitate social skill acquisition along the Autism spectrum). In that “traditional” marriage it becomes the husband’s/father’s role to (when appropriate) break that bond and bring the wife back to the primary relationship they share and shared to re-establish the appropriate balance in the mobile that is family. As a result the child, in short, learns to move out into the world to find a mate. Overindulgence by either parent can result in either failure to launch or failure to ever find a mate.
One of the primary difficulties in a blended family is that the parents’ relationship didn’t come first. The child’s parent has been divorced and the child lived in either shared custody or with a single parent. That child has, in many cases, watched other people come and go through their parents’ lives. The primary relationship tends to be between the child and parent. Rebalancing that family mobile is a complicated process that requires incredible trust and commitment.
There are so many different relationship equations and styles these days that I will let the above suffice as an introduction.
Again, please feel free to call so we can evaluate both the situation and whether we can work together effectively.