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I have been in a relationship for 5 years. He is ready to

I have been in a...
I have been in a relationship for 5 years. He is ready to call it quits and I want to work on strengthening our relationship and working on it. We are seeing a therapist on Monday and although he says his mind is made up, he also says he will keep an open mind to the therapy. Is this a lost cause?
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Answered in 1 minute by:
10/4/2013
Dr. Mark
Dr. Mark, Psychotherapist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 5,334
Experience: Dr. Mark is a PhD in psychology helping with relationships
Verified

Dr. Mark :

Hi! I'll be glad to help you with this issue.

Dr. Mark :

The short answer is that no, this is not a lost cause!

Dr. Mark :

He's willing to go to therapy with you and that is very encouraging. Are you not encouraged by that?

Customer:

Even if he is saying he is done and is just going to help me move on.... but is open to anything? Its weird. He cannot explain why he wants to leave the relationship he just does.

Customer:

I'm worried

Dr. Mark :

I can imagine you would be worried. But,

Dr. Mark :

this is not unusual for males: men often can't explain what's happening for them on the inside. They're very expert sometimes on discussing things on the surface, but when they feel things, they sometimes have a hard time expressing.

Dr. Mark :

That he's ready to go to therapy is the key:

Dr. Mark :

The idea would be that the therapist would work with him as well as you.

Customer:

I feel he is going to therapy to get me to move on from him...not to work on us. He is not going to work on the relationship. I just so strongly believe he is the person I should be with, I don't want to let it go. I love him.

Customer:

yes. he is only agreeing to go to 3 session.

Dr. Mark :

It is possible that he has this already in mind, that he's not going to change, that he just wants to do this for you.

Dr. Mark :

However,

Dr. Mark :

This is not what you can control. Your best chance here is to take some deep breaths and recognize that you can only be yourself and go into the therapy not with a negative, downhearted attitude. Rather,

Dr. Mark :

that you are going to therapy with him to give him the opportunity to explore and express what he is feeling inside that he hasn't been able to state and for you to be able to listen and to share what's in your heart.

Dr. Mark :

All the positives that you feel.

Dr. Mark :

What do you think?

Customer:

yes they are positives.

Dr. Mark :

By the way, do you think a male or female therapist would be better for you to work with? Or doesn't it mater?

Dr. Mark :

I'm sorry, matter?

Customer:

i scheduled an appointment with a male as it doesn't matter to me, but I assumed he might feel ganged up on if we saw a female therapist

Customer:

I'm not sure if it matters... I just think he might not open up to a female but i could be wrong about that

Dr. Mark :

No, you did the right thing. Your judgment was good in that your thinking about it was right on target. You were being sensitive to his possible feelings here.

Dr. Mark :

I want to really stress two points very much here:

Dr. Mark :

First, that you need to place your faith and trust in the process that therapy provides. That he's agreed to 3 sessions is fine. He may realize that this is not enough. But you'll see. The point is that you have an opportunity to share with the therapist your feelings and your desire for him to have the opportunity to express his feelings.

Dr. Mark :

You want to hear as much as to say. So let the therapist guide you two in this. Your goal is to have a wonderful relationship and that you view this therapy as an important opportunity to get there.

Dr. Mark :

Second, don't focus overly much on the goal: his changing his mind. That would put you in the position of trying to control things. And it will make him, as men will do, just dig in and not really open up. Focus on the process, on what you're finding out about him.

Dr. Mark :

Is this helpful?

Customer:

yes it is. thank you

Dr. Mark :

That's so important that you feel so. Because this is the chance you have right now to have the relationship continue and perhaps grow: to not try to force him or get him to see things as you do, but rather to go into this with the desire to hear from him what he feels and to share your feelings. And to let the therapist help him express what is going on inside for him.

Dr. Mark :

Okay, I wish you the very best!


 


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Dr. Mark
Dr. Mark, Psychotherapist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 5,334
Experience: Dr. Mark is a PhD in psychology helping with relationships
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Dr. Mark
Dr. Mark
Dr. Mark, Psychotherapist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 5,334
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Experience: Dr. Mark is a PhD in psychology helping with relationships

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