marriage counseling

What Does It Mean to "Let Go"? Part 5

What Does It Mean to "Let Go"? Part 5

 "Letting Go" is a popular topic in recovery from many things-- childhood issues, addictions, codependency, and unhealthy relationships, just to name a few.  Today we will finish with this week's blog series on what it means to "let go":

How to Forgive: Symbolism

How to Forgive: Symbolism

As Natalie discussed yesterday in Part 4 of our blog series on forgiveness, it's important to try and hang onto forgiveness, once you have gone through the steps of the process.  While she discussed some different ways you can make the commitment to forgiveness, what happens if you are struggling with this, and the memories continue to come back?

What is an Emotional Affair? Signs and Symptoms

What is an Emotional Affair? Signs and Symptoms

There are many signs of emotional affairs, if you know what to look for.  While these signs can also be related to other life issues, as well as physical or sexual infidelity, there are some common themes to look for when dealing with an emotional affair…..

What is an Emotional Affair? What it Looks Like

What is an Emotional Affair? What it Looks Like

What does an emotional affair look like?

Harry and Sally both worked at Eli Lilly. They were on the IT team together and worked on several projects as a great team. They started going out to lunch to talk shop. One day Harry was very upset about a fight he and his wife had the night before and decided to get some advice from Sally. Sally then shared her struggles in her marriage with her husband. Seem pretty innocent? Let's continue...

What Does it Mean When You Have Abandonment Issues? Part 5

What Does it Mean When You Have Abandonment Issues? Part 5

Imagine Hope Counseling Group has been discussing abandonment issues this week. If you haven’t gotten a chance to read the earlier posts in this series, we encourage you to read

What Does it Mean When You Have Abandonment Issues? Part 4

This week, we are discussing abandonment issues, and the struggle that individuals with abandonment issues go through. Part 1 and part 2 describe abandonment issues, and part 3 begins to describe the stages that abandonment issues can take.

I want to reiterate what Tamara said, this is different than the normal stages of grief and loss. Everyone experiences these stages.

The abandonment we are discussing goes far beyond that. It pushes something in us that causes us to react to things differently than "normal" grief and loss would.

I am going to discuss 2 more stages today:

Withdrawl

This stage is much like withdrawal symptoms when someone stops using drugs or alcohol, or any addiction for that matter. It is the aching, longing, the craving to have that person back. They yearn for the person to come back. The needs they were filling are more readily noticed and the void feels huge! The same as an addict, you feel the loss of appetite, not being able to sleep, staying awake trying to figure out how to get them back. You feel the true loss and separation in this stage.

Internalizing

This is the most critical of the stages for 2 reasons:

1. You are very vulnerable. You are walking around with an open, gaping wound! You are susceptible to being hurt even worse because of your wound. If you latch on to someone at this stage, you could easily be taken advantage of and hurt even more deeply.

2. You beat yourself up during this stage, making you even more vulnerable. You bargain with yourself. "What if I would of? I should have, could have...". Because you are doubting yourself, your self-esteem is taking a beating. This makes you a target for someone to treat you bad and to get into a bad relationship- which could start the cycle over again.

It is important during the stages of withdrawl and internalizing that you understand what is going on. Get support from family and friends who will help you and support you. This is a great time to seek counseling as well.

Tomorrow Joleen will discuss our last 2 stages. Thank you for reading.

Adapted from "The Journey from Abandonment to Healing" by Susan Anderson http://www.abandonment.net/

*Natalie Chandler, MA, LMHC is a therapist at Imagine Hope Counseling Group. Natalie enjoys doing marriage counseling, individual counseling, and couples counseling. We also specialize in family counseling, child, and adolescent counseling. Imagine Hope serves the Indianapolis area including the surrounding areas of Carmel, Fishers, Noblesville, Westfield, and Zionsville

What Does it Mean When You Have Abandonment Issues? Part 3

What Does it Mean When You Have Abandonment Issues? Part 3

Abandonment, as we have discussed in part 1  and part 2 of this weeks blog series so far, is similar to grief.

With both, you experience a loss. However with grief, the more time that elapses, the intensity of the loss decreases. With abandonment, the difference is that the loss feels personal. The intensity of the loss does not decrease because it feels personal.

What Does it Mean When You Have Abandonment Issues? Part 2

What Does it Mean When You Have Abandonment Issues? Part 2

Have you heard someone say they suffer from abandonment issues? Most people think about adoption or being left on a door step as a child, but abandonment issues can be caused by many more life experiences.

What Does it Mean When You Have Abandonment Issues? Part 1

What Does it Mean When You Have Abandonment Issues? Part 1

Many times, our clients feel confusion when the term “abandonment issues” comes up in therapy. After all, don’t we most commonly think of the literal term, “abandonment”, as being physically abandoned (like an infant who is left on a door step for someone to find) ?

So, what exactly are abandonment issues? 

How To Communicate Better Part 4

How To Communicate Better Part 4

Teri, Tammy, and Natalie have all shared some great tips so far to making our communication better. Here are a few more to add to your "relationship toolbox":

Remember that communication breakdowns aren't always personal.  Many times the issue at hand is linked to some deep rooted unresolved issues.  Try to empathize with your partner as they are trying to heal from a painful past.

How To Communiate Better Part 3

How To Communiate Better Part 3

Are you starting to understand that healthy communication is achievable? It is how you handle it that is important! Have you tried any of the tips so far? Here are 5 more to help:

Remember this isn't a competition. Having a win/lose mentality will only hurt your relationship and break down the connection and intimacy you have with your partner. This mind set actually creates two losers, not just one. There is no room for comments like, "I told you so" in healthy communication.

How To Communicate Better Part 2

How To Communicate Better Part 2

As Teri mentioned yesterday, disagreements can be healthy, as long as it's done in a respectful way. Healthy conflict can be one of the ways you and another person grow closer. It's natural for people to disappoint us in our lives, but how we handle it is key. Continue to follow tips for healthier communication steps this week, and you'll find yourself more successful at tackling difficult conversations.

Are You an Adult Child? Adult Children of Alcoholics Part 4

Are You an Adult Child? Adult Children of Alcoholics Part 4

This week, Imagine Hope Counseling Group is discussing signs of Adult Children of Alcoholics— otherwise known as Adult Children of Dysfunction.  So far, we have some insightful descriptions.  Here are some additional signs:

Strategies for Dealing with Anger - Part 5

Strategies for Dealing with Anger - Part 5

As we have learned this week, anger is a healthy emotion, as long as it is channeled in a healthy way.  Dealing with anger constructively can actually help our marriages become stronger-- and closer.  In order to not allow anger to become destructive, it's important to learn how to deal with it effectively.  Today, we will finish up with two more ways to deal with anger that can actually help you improve your marriage:

Systematic Enrichment

Strategies For Dealing With Anger - Part 1

Strategies For Dealing With Anger - Part 1

Anger is normal. We all feel it from time to time. We shouldn't see anger as "bad" or try to avoid getting angry. However, HOW we show our anger and process it can be what gets us in trouble.

This week we are sharing tips to help deal with your anger in healthy ways.

Have Some Fighting Rules

Getting angry during a fight is common, but sometimes unhealthy expression of anger can cause a fight to get intense.