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really anxious day - partner seeing counsellor for first time, what to expect?

Discussion in 'Personal' started by anon63, Jan 15, 2011.

  1. Some of you may remember my background story which is that my boyfriend of two years has massive commitment issues centered around the very painful collapse of his last relationship/life and we have reached a brick wall where I want o move on with him and he's terrified of taking the next steps.
    Today he is seeing a counsellor about it for the first time because he says he wants to talk about it and be able to move on as well. He is coming round to mine afterwards for lunch and the rest of the weekend (I hope, but if it's upset him I imagine he will want time alone as he tends to work through things in a solitary way.) I am planning on lighting the fire, making him some nice food, tea and cake and just being as warm and relaxing as I can make the rest of his day.
    I went to counselling years ago and remember feeling very wobbly after my sessions. In fact I think I only made it three times before I couldn't bear it anymore as I found it so hard feeling so vulnerable afterwards and having no-one to come home to, which made it worse.
    Does anyone have any experience of how to support a partner through counselling? I want to be caring but not suffocating. I also am trying very hard not to let my feelings of anxiety and loneliness (because he's become so wuthdrawn and introspective) add to his pressure/worries. I think it would be useful for me to receive some ideas, hear what others have gone through so I can be prepared and bolstered.
  2. Just be calm. One thing is not to react too strongly if he's bad-tempered. Sometimes the first reaction to bringing distressing things to mind is to get serriously p ed off.
  3. I guess it's important, although very tempting, to try not to pry. i would find this difficult!!! He may want to talk about the session but prob best to assume that he doesn't want to dissect it. Men are funny creatures, in my opinion, and don't like to talk through their day. if he brings it up, go with it. If not, enjoy the relaxing evening you have planned.
    I believe with counselling, things sometimes get worse for a while before they get better. Good luck Beestoni, i know you want this to work so badly xxx
  4. grandelf

    grandelf New commenter

    Let him get on with it, is my advice.

    As you have already said he is quiet so give him some time to do this, nip out to the shops or something, let him watch the TV football etc.

    If he wants to talk about it, he will.
    Carry on as normal, I would feel odder if I came home and was treated 'differently' to normal.
  5. When I had bereavement counselling I found it so exhausting and emotionally draining I just wanted to sleep afterwards. I think what you're doing sounds so lovely, coming to a warm home to curl up on the sofa and to have cups of tea and cake. I agree with grandelf who said to carry on as normal, and having TV or DVD to watch can just let him tune out if that's what he needs. I'd tell him though, that if he wants to talk fine, but you'll not push it, just let himm know that you'll listen. This sounds a bit obvious, I don't mean it to sound patronising, I promise.
    Hope he stays with you this weekend, take care. x
  6. Take care, I hope he finds it useful. xx
  7. I haven't any experience to contribute but it is very encouraging that you are both prepared to do so much to make your relationship a success. I hope things go well.
  8. As he doesn't live with me he can take as much time as we wants away from me of course. He rang me an hour ago to said he was going to take some time to have a cup of tea and read a book and then he's coming over and he said it went well, very 'interesting' and that he'd tell me about it when he gets to me. I, in the meantime, have been charging about doing so many different jobs here and there trying to take my mind off it. I feel relieved that he's finally gone, after several months of waiting for an appointment and feel that , hopefully by Easter, we should have a clearer picture about whether this is going to work or not. This gives me something to look forward to in terms of not stagnating anyway. I am so nervous. Thanks for all your thoughts and I shall post with news when I can.
  9. Bees, all sounds postive, the fact he decided to do the alone thing alone and then come over later is good sign. Also the fact he has said he will tell you about it is also a good sign but as other have said don't ask, if he wants to talk about it Ia m sure he will broach the subject. Obviously if he does and questions are appropriate then go for it but otherwise let him take the lead.
    Counselling session can vary widely from session to session depending on what was covered, sometimes i would be drained and the idea of talking./discussing would have bothered me greatly and sometimes I would chat about it. ALways be led by him even though it is tempting to ask.
    As I said to you before I believe the fact he is doing this is a good sign that he wants it to work with you.

    Fire, tea and cake and a relaxing Saturday night with the lady that loves him will do him good.

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