I felt proud to the point tears as I worked with a premarital couple this
The young woman was willing to face the pain and the negative mindsets of her past (family of origin), which would have definitely hurt her marriage, even before it started.
Her parents did their best with what they knew and understood but they were also hurting. Her parents hurt her in ways she didn’t even realize and affected her mindsets about men, women, husband, wife and life in ways she was not conscious of. She learned very unhealthy ways to handle conflict, which was already negatively impacting her relationship. She knew nothing of empathy and how to be a good listener.
Her partner sat is awe (and taking notes), as he finally started to make sense of some of her behaviours and he realized that she wasn’t trying to be mean and uncaring but she was doing what she knew and she was trying to protect her heart. He started to realize how his reactions to her behaviours were sometimes doing more harm than good. (His turn is next… 🙂 )
I told her how proud I was of her for her willingness to face painful experiences and not be defensive about her parents behaviours, because it wasn’t about her parents but her default setting as a result of what she was exposed to as a child and how the negatives are still impacting her relationships.
I told her that we have no choice in where we were born, our parents, how our parents treated us, what primary school we attended, our race and a lot of the things we learned as children good or bad…but when we become adults we have a choice in how to continue with our lives, we can make the choice to get help so that we can have healthier lives. FREEDOM FROM THE PAINS OF OUR PAST RELATIONSHIPS! She made that choice. They made that choice and I was proud of her and I was proud of both of them! I will do all in my power to help them have a healthy marriage!