Apologizing is no easy feat. I work with many couples, families, and individuals who are hurting, and want their loved ones to recognize their hurt, and expect an apology in some capacity. But, why is apologizing so hard to do? And if we don’t mean it, should we still apologize? We have conceptualized apologizing as a vehicle for admitting we are wrong, smoothing things over, or giving in, any of which signify that we may be weak. Contrary to popular belief, it takes great strength and courage to dare to apologize, and here is guide for when to do it, and how to do it well.
The majority of couples that I work with (and even individuals) tell me that communication is a struggle for them. Either they don’t feel heard or understood, or they can’t keep a simple disagreement from escalating to unhealthy levels, or they feel like what they say isn’t important. HOW you argue is more important that HOW OFTEN you argue. If you have daily spats, but are able to address them quickly and create a resolve, that can be more healthy than arguing once a month, but never resolving the issue and communicating in a way that harms the relationship. One of the first steps in learning to communicate clearly and effectively is understanding what to eliminate in your communication style.
Perhaps you’re considering working with a couples therapist to improve your relationship, but may be wondering how it works. Here’s a bit about what you can expect to learn when you work with a therapist that specializes in working with couples and relationships.