September 14, 2020

How we f up relationships

Sad Woman Ignored by Her Husband Using Smartphone on Sofa

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Ever wonder how relationships go wrong? Have you experienced confusion about how things changed in your marriage? Have you felt stuck with constant miscommunications and relationship tension?In this podcast episode, Elizabeth Polinsky discusses 5 reasons why relationships go wrong.

IN THIS PODCAST

SUMMARY:

  • We compare ourselves to others without actually knowing what their relationships are like.
  • There is a lack of education, role models, and good advice on relationships.
  • 93% of communication is tone of voice & body language–only 7% is what you actually say.
  • We repeat self-protective patterns which prevent emotional closeness and connection in relationships. 
  • Life stress is a b*tch. ​

We compare ourselves to others without actually knowing what their relationships are like. However, we only see the front of others’ relationships–we don’t see what is actually going on. Additionally, societal messages teach us that relationships should look perfect.

“Even at the grocery store we’re hearing ‘theres something wrong with your relationship’, ‘no ones going to want you if you don’t look a certain way or have sex a certain way or talk and communicate a certain way’.”

There is a lack of education, role models, and good advice on relationships.

  1. There is no formal education on healthy relationships.
  2. Societal messages through the media are sensational. They emphasize emotional roller coaster relationships that are often unhealthy and unrealistic.
  3. Many people do not have good relationship role models growing up.
  4. The people we go to for advice on relationships often do not have good relationships themselves limiting the quality of the advice.

“There is no education in school on happy and healthy relationships and people often do not have good relationship role models.”

93% of communication is tone of voice & body language–only 7% is what you actually say. No wonder there are miscommunications! Only 7% of your words get a cross to someone else. We all need to learn to make our body language and tone of voice consistent with our words for greater success at communication.

We repeat self-protective patterns which prevent emotional closeness and connection in relationships. People push their partners away and shut down when they are hurt, or they become critical and demanding. These are emotional self protection behaviors. What is needed to move forward is vulnerability and kindness.

“In order to have healthy happy relationships, both partners need to feel safe to be vulnerable and be able to respond with kindness when their partner is vulnerable.”

Life stress is a b*tch. Mental illness, financial struggles, deployment, and life transition cause more stress. When there is more stress for couples, it typically increase miscommunications leading to differences in sex drive and decreases relationship satisfaction.

ACTIONSTEPS:

As you go about your day over the next few days, try to notice all the images of relationships and see what the societal messages are–TV, movies, tabloids, etc. See if you see the 1) this is perfect and 2) yours isn’t good enough messages.

Liz’s Useful Links: 

Podcast Sponsor: The Relate Assessment is the most comprehensive relationship assessment in the world and is based on 10 predictors of marital stability. It’s supported by the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy and is the one my husband and I used during our premarital couples counseling. To get 20% off the assessment, go to https://relateinstitute.com/ and enter “POLINSKY20”.

Thanks for Listening!

     

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    About Author

    Elizabeth Polinsky is a Certified Emotionally Focused Couple Therapist (EFT) providing EFT marriage counseling in the states of Virginia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Arkansas, and Nevada. She also provides EFT training and supervision to therapists looking to become certified in EFT Couple Therapy. As a military spouse, she has a special passion for working with military and veteran couples, and is also the host of The Communicate & Connect Podcast for Military Relationships.

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    My podcast, blogs, videos, newsletters, and products are general information for educational purposes only; they are not psychotherapy and not a replacement for therapy. The information provided is not intended to be therapy or psychological advice; and nothing I post should be considered professional advice. The information provided does not constitute the formation of a therapist-patient relationship.

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