The Causes of Our Discontent

Why Do Couples Seek Counselling?

There are several common themes that I, as a therapist, hear when couples call for an appointment. Probably the most prevalent one is “ I have lost my feelings for my spouse”. Most often only one person feels this way and the other is unaware of this change in her partner. Sometimes she has a sense that something is wrong but doesn’t know how to change it and unconsciously decides to ignore the signs of problems. As the problem continues the discontent festers and becomes much greater than if it had been addressed when one of the individuals first became aware of it. Often one or both think, “ It will just go away if I ignore it.” And they convince themselves, temporarily, that ‘it’s not so bad’. But under stress the feelings about the value of the relationship re-surface and it is often at this time, when it is most difficult to think and act rationally, that one person will reveal how he has been feeling. The person who is unaware or who has not wanted to acknowledge that there’s a problem will feel that her spouse’s desire to separate has come ‘out of the blue’.

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