Couples Therapy for One

You work hard on your relationship, trying to make things better.

You try to get your spouse to hear your pain, to realize that things need to change. But that’s falling on deaf ears. He says things are fine, or that you’re the problem. Or he doesn’t believe in telling strangers all his personal problems.

Sometimes you wonder why you’re working so hard to improve things, when your partner isn’t. Every time you try to talk about it, they shut down or walks away.

You suggest counseling. But your partner refuses to go or can’t find the time.

This is a common scenario that can feel hopeless, but we’re here to tell you that it is absolutely not hopeless. When your partner won’t get help for your relationship, there’s still a lot you can do to improve things, and one of them is to get help for yourself. “Counseling for one” can be enormously helpful, even when couples counseling would perhaps be preferred.

Why’s that? The answer lies in the fact that couples relationships are systems.

couples counseling for one

Each of you plays a part in this system, and when one part changes, it can’t help but impact the other part. When you make changes—in terms of your boundaries, self-esteem, or communication style, for example—you are tipping the scales in a healthier direction. And that impacts the relationship. When you are healthier, the relationship also tends to become healthier. At the very least, you will gain clarity about your relationship.

The world’s most empowering thing to realize in dealing with a relationship problem is, “I can change.” In other words, I am in charge of me, I am in charge of how I behave, I see what my part is here, and I can chose how to react to this.

What’s not empowering is thinking, How can I get this other person to change? That is like taking all of your personal power and throwing it out the window, into the hands of someone you can’t control. But again, it is great news to learn that you have power and control over yourself.

Here is what individual counseling can do for you when what you really wanted was couples counseling.

couples counseling for one

We can help you:

  • Get a clearer picture of your relationships and what your role in the problem is, or isn’t
  • Improve your boundaries and autonomy within the context of your relationship
  • Increase your ability to communicate in ways in which you can be heard
  • Increase your awareness of the cyclical patterns of communication that you and your partner fall into that cause you pain
  • Learn to feel less resentful or victimized, recognize that you have choices
  • Deal more effectively with the stress of having a relationship problem
  • Decide on how to move forward

Few things are more painful than problems in your relationship. You deserve to get the time, care, and attention put on your life and relationship that you have been asking for. Regardless of what your partner will or won’t do, we are here to help you, no matter what.