Turning Towards: Facing Problems Together

Facing problems together during tough times is a useful skill to have.  Sometimes when we face obstacles in life, we tend to push away the one person who is your biggest ally in life, your significant other.  Whether you are married or dating, learning how to rely on your partner through tough times can take some practice, but in turn will create a strength in your relationship that can add to your quality of life for years to come.  Today’s post is to examine how we solve problems in relationships and share ways to tackle the problem together as a couple.

Isn’t it funny how when times get hard we turn on the one person who we love the most?

You have had a long day, nothing at work went well, the kids were a complete terror and for some reason when all is said and done, you go off at your spouse.  Yes, it is not just you.  We all do it, maybe unknowingly but it is, in a way, natural.  If you think about it, in a healthy relationship we are most comfortable expressing our true feelings with our significant other.  It may actually make sense that you can’t really express yourself to your boss, or let your kids know what you really think about their behaviour, but to your partner… you can let it fly.  Oftentimes you end up finding small insignificant things to get ‘mad’ at them for.  This way you can justify letting your emotions run wild at the end of the day, but does turning on your partner really make you feel loved and supported at the end of the day?  Or do you feel like you just added to the tension?

Remember that you and your partner are on the same team

Learning how to support your partner and learning how to be supported can be equally challenging.  We would love to think that relationships are 50/50 when it comes to giving love and support, but in reality sometimes it is 30/70 and then sometimes it is 80/20.  Why? Because life happens on its own terms.  Recognising that your partner is going through a tough time and approaching the relationship with a mentality of unconditional support can set the tone in the relationship.  Keep in mind that there will be a season of your life where you will need extra support from them. Ask your spouse how you can help them or support them. If you need support and find yourself angry with your partner, evaluate what the true problem is and keep your partner as your ally.

What if the problem is them?

Another part of facing problems in life is running into conflicts with your partner.  In conflicts within the relationship, we often feel alone and unsupported. Take time to sit down and talk.  Make sure it is planned and mutually agreed upon.  During this time you will talk about your conflict but keep this phrase in mind… ‘We are on the same team, we both want the same outcome.’  From this point, you will want to agree on what the problem actually is.  For example, the problem is usually never about him not washing the dishes.  Maybe the problem is actually not feeling appreciated for all of the housework being done.  If you are angry that she is always looking through your phone, maybe the problem is actually a lack of mutual trust.  Identify what the true problem is and agree that you both want a solution.

Tackling life’s struggles can be difficult on your own.  If you have a partner by your side, you can utilise their love and support, even if the struggle is within the relationship.  Remembering that you are a team and have the same goal, of maintaining a loving relationship can be a helpful tool when navigating complications in life.

Partners can be loving supports in life, but sometimes there are circumstances where outside help is needed. If you feel overwhelmed, book an appointment with a psychologist to help guide you through this time. If you are struggling with seeing your partner as being on your team, guidance through counselling can help provide clarity. Contact us on (02) 6262 6157 or book an appointment online.

Related reading:

Communication styles to improve relationships
Arguments in relationships: is being “right” really worth it?
Top Reasons for Divorce: How to prevent it from happening to you

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