My Feelings

Cincinnati marriage and family therapy

Some people say, “Take the feelings out of it” and our working relationship will be better. How does one do that? Unless you are a Robot or Spock, it is not possible. Logic and emotion are not polar opposites. They work in conjunction with each other. When in relationship we can benefit greatly by letting our logic inform our emotions and vice versa. Building awareness is a good way to be in control of our choices. Lack of awareness often means that we will be motivated by our feelings unknowingly and end up regretting things we say or do. Some examples might help clarify:

  • The quiet woman who was always quiet and unemotional may find herself transgressing her usual moral standards because her suppressed needs, wants and desires take her to a place she would never logically choose.
  • Traumas/hurts in our life or relationships that are ‘swept under the carpet’ can often lead to a lack of appetite for intimacy with our partner or to a sense of ‘depression’ or ‘apathy’.
  • The strong woman who has had great success with pushing any vulnerable feelings aside can often end up in a relationship where she finds it hard to connect.
  • The man who got the message, as a child, that his role in life was to take care of everyone else’s needs may be angry that his needs are rarely taken care of in a relationship.
  • People often use substance, work, parenting, housework, sex, food or exercise to distract themselves (unconsciously) from dealing with underlying feelings, needs, wants or desires.

Awareness does not require therapy. Therapy is a great way to develop more awareness and start choosing how to deal with life. Awareness helps us see more clearly and be able to choose a path to take. It helps prevent avoidance. It provides us with options. Having a relationship therapist to assist in building awareness helps us to be more objective in recognizing what we do and what we want to do. Awareness does not totally change our behaviors but helps us be more actively involved in the process of change. The change is not into what someone else wants us to be but to become more aligned with our true essence.

Tony Fryer