In our first couples counseling session, Ed shared that he needs to be physically intimate with his wife, but Michelle disclosed that she doesn’t feel safe. She had felt emotionally abused in this long-term marriage. Ed can fly off the handle, sometimes screaming at her. Ed recently recognized the significance of this and reinstated individual counseling. Due to his fluctuating moods, he is also considering medication.
Michelle shared some of her frightening experiences in our session. By doing so, she is giving Ed good feedback on the impact of these incidents. Ed’s emotional aggressiveness has betrayed the trust in this relationship.
By creating a safe environment in couples counseling, Michelle can heal these experiences if she feels heard. However, Ed is a lynchpin in whether couples counseling will be successful since his aggressive behaviors need to change. He will be working on this in his individual therapy, and the couples counseling will allow him to more deeply understand the impact of his emotional volatility.