I often find myself doing couples counseling with only one of the partners because the other one doesn’t want to attend. Some of the ‘no show’ partner’s reasons are:
- “You’re the one with the problem so fix yourself and we’ll be fine.”
- “I don’t want anyone to know our personal business.”
- “We’ve already tried couples counseling and it doesn’t work.”
- “We should be able to figure this out ourselves.”
- “I don’t believe in counseling.”
- “We’re doing fine. There’s nothing wrong.”
When you learn how to value yourself more and start setting loving boundaries in your relationship, you give your partner the opportunity to make different choices. When your partner realizes that you’re not going to be around his/her unloving behavior, your partner may stop trying to control you with anger, criticism, shutting down or by blaming you. Instead, your partner might start taking personal responsibility and join you on your healing journey.
Remember what is truly loving to yourself is always truly loving to your partner. This is true even if your partner doesn’t agree, approve or like how you’re taking care of yourself.