When I see clients for relationship therapy, I more often than not give them a hand out I made of what I believe to be the key six steps to resolving conflict. So I thought it best to begin my blog here with number one: Marriage is a ‘we’ business. I tell my clients to remember, specifically in times of distress in the relationship, that the marriage comes before the individual. In doing so, a partnership is created, a united front, so to speak. This is especially true when you are arguing to be right, which is what we so often do. I encourage my clients to ask themselves, “Would I rather be right or happy?” When one person is trying to win, the goal gets lost, and the partnership loses.
Now, let’s apply this to my life as the “not-so-therapist mom.” Couples are my specialty. I hand out this piece of paper to most couples. I tell them to put it on their refrigerator to revert back to during arguments. On my refrigerator there are sonogram pictures and random magnets. There are pictures of other people’s children, grocery lists, and a CPR guide. Nowhere on my refrigerator are the six steps to conflict resolution, MY six steps. In regards to the first step, I do my very best on a daily basis to be a team player. During arguments, my husband says otherwise. He says he does not feel like I am his partner. He feels as though I choose my extended family over him and this makes him become defensive. I will admit, I am protective of my family. But I am protective of OUR family, too. For this step, specifically, I would have to say that I have worked on not wanting to win or be right. I have begun to open myself up to the idea that my husband is a human being who also needs to get things off his chest and vent to me about what I am doing that bothers him. So when he is venting (or throwing a tantrum) I listen. I put his needs before my own, I put the marriage first.
Begin Couples Counseling in the Philadelphia Area
If you’re reading this and do not already have a couples therapist, now might be the time. In my Paoli, PA based counseling clinic, I specialize in helping couples at all stages in a relationship. I offer individual counselingif one person is wanting to do deeper individual work as well as premarital counseling courses for coupleswanting to enter a marriage as strong as possible. Most popular are my standard couples and marriage counseling sessions. Regardless of what your exact needs are, I encourage you to reach out to Main Line Counselingtoday and let’s talk about how my services may be able to help you.
Other Professional Services
As an experienced therapist myself, I am also always looking for ways to help other counselors find the same joy in helping others that I have! I do this through individual coaching services for therapist moms in private practicewhere I work with moms to find a balance between work, marriage & parenting. Additionally, I take on a select number of new therapists for clinical supervisionto guide them on their journey toward their LPC.
Natalie Nesbitt, MS, LPC, loves working with couples! Helping them find the passion in their relationship; remove blocks that are keeping them from being their best; learning to have a marriage they have only dreamed. Providing personalized couples therapy and life counseling at her private psychotherapy practice in Paoli, Pennsylvania, conveniently located on the Main Line. She has helped countless couples save their marriages and/or relationships and come back from the deepest of betrayals.