Blog Items

Sharing power in intimate relationships: the best aphrodisiac!

According to eminent relationship researcher Dr John Gottman, successful relationships rely on each partner allowing the other one to share power, have a voice in decision-making and accept the other's influence. 

What does this mean in practice - in the day-to-day interactions we all have about running the household, thinking about our future, balancing competing demands for time and money?

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Illness and intimacy: sexual challenges for couples

Most of us know that it requires work to keep the passion alive in our relationships over the long haul, after the 'honeymoon period' is over. We know that it's important to nurture intimacy in the broader sense - making sure we are spending quality time together, remaining interested and curious about each other's interests and concerns, cultivating an attitude of playfulness and exploration as we continue to deepen our knowledge of what delights and fulfills our partner sexually. 

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How can I ask my partner to be more emotionally supportive?

Often couples come to counselling because one person feels the other is not supporting them in the way that they need. We may say things like:-

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what can we do to help our kids manage our separation?

You've made the difficult decision to separate. What's the best way to help your kids deal with it? It's not easy, especially when you're having to deal with your own strong emotions about what's happening, as well as manage the practicalities of sorting your finances, where to live and so on.

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Getting the balance back in intimate relationships

We all have a pretty clear picture of what it feels like to have the balance right in our relationships - when it's going well we feel connected, heard and understood by our partner. We use expressions like "we're able to work as a team", "we trust each other", "we're able to talk through issues and work things out" to capture our sense that things are as they should be.

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How can we work on the problems in our relationship?

When couples come to counselling, often they have lost sight about what is working well in their relationship. They may have a 'problem-saturated' story about their history together - that is, they can only remember the times where they have either felt disappointed in their partner, or times where they feel they have failed in their relationship.

If you are in this position, it may he belpful to ask yourselves the following questions:-

What are my partner's strengths, that attracted me to him/her in the first place?

What are the strengths about our relationship?

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"What makes love last?" by John Gottman: a book review

There's a reason why so many fairy tales and romantic comedies end with a first kiss, a proposal or even a wedding. Falling in love is easy -- it's STAYING in love that can be the challenge.

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Dealing with pornography in relationships

Beyond Right and Wrong: An Inquiry into Pornography
Interview with Victoria Doughty

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When anxiety takes over - what does this mean for relationships?

Anxiety affects us all at various times. It may cause us to lose our ability to think clearly, to manage our own strong reactions to other people, and to calm ourselves down. Where anxiety is more than just a temporary response to a stressful situation, and is so intense or prolonged that we are unable to manage it on our own, it may be necessary to seek medical and psychogical help for what may be a mental illness.

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How do I help my kids learn to positively manage their negative emotions?

Helping children learn to manage their emotions isn’t easy, but it pays off, say advocates of “emotion coaching.”

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