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“We Want What we Used to Have…”

Regularly… a couple will share with me that what they want from counselling is to have their relationship back; just how it used to be, falling back in love. We never quite achieve this…

One reason is that we cannot go back in time and erase history. A relationship grows and incorporates everything that happens within it: the good, the bad, the celebrations, the losses, the dull and exciting. Damage to the partnership cannot be erased, nor abusive behaviour, nor neglect, nor anything that changed how the relationship used to be. The way the couple communicate together through adversity decides how it can be in the future. This is key.

Two hands forming a heart shape

Not all couples can work through a difficulty history. This is what corrupts the possibilities to reconcile, to fall back in love, and leave the couple wishing to have what they used to have.

Counselling helps Work Through Conflicts

The couple and I will work together addressing the matters that are getting in the way.

Sometimes it can be for many sessions: it depends on how well the couple can work with each other to transform behaviour. We’ll dealing with the fallout from all the history that is yet unresolved, all the problems and strong life events that the couple had to endure together.

And then, maybe slowly, not guaranteed, and when the environment is right, a couple can begin to fall back in love again.

The couple’s present relationship will not be the same as how it used to be. Instead, the partners are falling in love with who they are, not who they used to be. But now they are able to manage their history together, to find ways to forgive or the tolerate historic problems and events. They may arrive at a place where love is possible again. And when it’s not possible, we can talk about the possibilities of relationship separation. 

Falling Back in Love

How does a gay couple fall back in love?

It may shock you how LGBT /QIA+ romantic relationships often don’t engage with helpful therapy… until the very last minute (and sometimes after it has become too late).

Taking up counselling when the relationship has been failing for a long time may seem like a desperate step; the couple may very well be desperate. 

But people in intimate relationships sometimes don’t talk for very good reasons!

The sad – but very real – news though, is that counselling cannot rescue a relationship on behalf of the couple themselves. This is because couple counselling is a process (a tool, if you like) that the couple can invest in, develop, and learn to use themselves to address cracks in the relationship.

Counselling is not a prescribed fix (aka Step1… Step 2… etc) that guarantees everything will be cured at the end of step 20. No – there is hard work to do – and those who are willing to invest the time can discover welcoming a transformation of their relationship in conflict.

But what does this have to do with falling back in love?

Falling back in Love

  • Curiosity (initiated through Counselling)… leading to  →  New Information.
  • New Information… leading to  →  New Options.
  • New Options… leading to  →  Negotiating / Making New Choices.
  • New Choices… leading to  →  Transforming the Relationship (through informed empowerment).
  • Transformation underway (partners consider leaving counselling).

Communication & Comprehension

We use couple counselling to boost communication, comprehension of each other and developing options to address this relationship’s unique needs. It’s this approach that can lay the land for the couple to fall back in love once more.

We talk. We hypothesis on what’s going wrong. We put in place ways to address the going-wrong-ness. We revisit, review, and amend our approach. The couple begin to deal with conflicts that couldn’t have been dealt with before. We improve communication getting used to discussing that which we thought couldn’t be discussed before. We learn how we can make informed, relationship-transforming decisions once again. We do this by observing, adjusting and learning how your partnership can blend its strengths (Partner A does this more effectively, but Partner B does another thing more effectively, and combining the strengths can be a tour de force, rather than a conflict).

Can a Gay Couple Fall Back in Love

Improving Intimate Communication

A common complaint brought into counselling by many gay and lesbian partners is: “we don’t know how to communicate any more” 😢.

I’ll say to you: couples don’t talk for very good reasons.

It’s not entirely accurate to say that a couple doesn’t “know” how to communicate because, for example, they’re arguing a lot. I’d say that the couple are communicating very well… it’s just that no-one is really listening. When the honeymoon is over (or the honeymoon didn’t have a chance to begin) and more serious matters come into the couple’s lives, partners discover that the way they learned to communicate in the beginning has left them unprepared to deal with the more serious aspects of relationship communication later on.

We can improve communication in your relationship. 

Learn how to Communicate using Counselling

Tales of Therapy

Over the past 22 years as a counsellor I’ve heard hundreds of stories about misunderstandings and inability to communicate successfully.

Such stories have included:-

“We met online and didn’t live together for some months. We might have skipped the honeymoon (aka “foundation building”) stage.”

“We don’t talk any more – we just throw looks at each other and don’t try going any further.”

“I thought in relationships we get to know everything the other thinking or feeling. So why do I keep getting it wrong?”

“I think it’s because he {reasons of suspicion or hatred} so I don’t try to speak any more”

Working together, and employing therapeutic frameworks that have been around for over 50 years, the couple develops improvements in their very own style and brand of communication. We’ll learn about checks-and-balances, how to notice problems and take immediate action, interrupting an argument before it begins, and so much more.

Plus, as an experienced counsellor, Dean employs methods using plain English (so you won’t need a psychology degree to benefit).

The Couple creates their own Therapy Process

In summary: through Couple Counselling, couples begin learning newer information about each other and their relationship; though they may have been turning a blind-eye to such information to for years.

By learning new information about each other  – and the relationship’s behaviour – we get the opportunity to make different choices. More informed choices.

With new choices come opportunities for the couple improving their relationship behaviour, improving their relationship, which may lead the path to falling-back in love anew. 💘

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The Cove Therapy Rooms, 12 West StreetHavantHampshirePO9 1PFUK
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Video Counselling for Gay Couples from the Counsellor with over 22 years Experience.

Got a Question about LGBT/QIA+ Relationship Counselling?

Come and ask… whatever question about couple and group counselling for gay, lesbian, bisexual, aromatic, asexual and mixed-relationships you have, get in touch today to discuss your needs…

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