Have you ever stood back from your relationship and looked for patterns?
Try it now. Notice if you spot any familiar positions you and your partner take.
One position that may not be immediately obvious is the one around disappointment.
Chances are that one of you is Breaking Bad‘s Mike Ehrmantraut pretty much all the time!
If you’ve not seen the show, Mike is a hit man and “fixer” who seems to spend the entire series being let down. He is pretty much impossible to please. Can you imagine having him as your other half?
Disappointed with your partner?
If you are the Mike then have a think. Why is this? Do you notice that you experienced being let down in your childhood?
We often carry our experiences from childhood into our relationship and that is often not useful.
Imago Relationship Therapy theory says that we choose our partner to heal our childhood wounds. We also choose a partner that is the Imago or image of our caregivers.
The chances are that your partner is likely to behave in a similar way towards you that your parents or caregivers did – that’s why you chose that person.
Although that doesn’t seem to make any sense at all, subconsciously we want our partner to change and as their behaviour takes our needs into consideration that feels healing.
Sabotaging your relationship
So if nothing your partner can do pleases you and they are constantly falling short of the mark think how that impacts on your relationship.
Is it really the case? How are you contributing to the relationship being sabotaged?
What your partner may need is real recognition for the things they do well.
In Imago Relationship Therapy we call these appreciations and they are the first thing I teach couples who come to me for couples counselling in Wilmslow.
After all, if you know nothing you did was good enough how long would it be before you gave up trying?
Being the disappointer in your relationship
If you are the disappointer in the relationship have a look at what’s going on (I guess this must make you the Jesse Pinkman?). Have you given up trying because nothing you do is good enough? How does that fit with your childhood stuff?
This is a painful place to be. Believe me, I know Maverick’s pain.
The best remedy for these feelings is to to your partner about them. If he/she understands how you feel then you can move towards doing things differently.
This is where talking to you partner using Imago Dialogue becomes really useful.
It’s a way of really conveying what’s going on for you and being heard. It’s also a great way to listen to your other half and seeing their perspective.
How to move on from stuck positions
The answer has to be talking about it then doing things differently. You can only change yourself. No matter how much you want your partner to do things differently accept that this is out of your control.
Talking it through really helps for you to understand each other.
If you need help with this or want to learn how to use Imago Relationship Therapy dialogue process then please contact me by ringing 07966 390857.
A few sessions with me could completely change the way you relate to your partner and allow you to move away from those childhood positions that sabotage your relationship.
Why not do it now before your relationship goes the way of Walter White?!
Read the book
Grab a copy of Making Marriage Simple: 10 Relationship-Saving Truths* and read how you can change your relationship for the better. The book is written by Harville Hendrix, the founder of Imago Relationship Therapy.