Almost a decade helping couples rediscover why they chose each other in the first place, one thing I know to be true is that no matter how bad things may be when you decide to seek help, no-one ever commits to an “I-do” thinking it’ll someday become “I-don’t-want-to-anymore”.

That’s not-how-your-love-was-destined-to-unfold.

That, you know to be true.

AFI Top 100 090 Swing Time 03


Want the good news?

Such a scenario is avoidable… if, of course, that’s how you want  it to be.

Mostly, when couples take the brave + responsible step to actively seek help for what might not be working so well, I increasingly see them sitting with me before the wounds are too deeply entrenched, way before tension becomes unbearable, or in advance of communication-lines being severed beyond repair. (I work with the opposite too + that’s for another blog!). 

Prevention is better than cure:

Because of the, sometimes, stigma attached to getting help, I might hear comments, like: “what’s wrong with us that we need to be here?” so that’s often my cue to flip the question + highlight what’s right with you that you’re taking action + choosing to make your relationship better”.

So before we'll dive in, I’ll sometimes compare couple counselling to more everyday things like, caring for your physical health, your dental health or giving your car a much-needed-service. When things start to break down, you naturally call your doctor, you’ll have your dentist on speed-dial if a filling needs fixing + your mechanic gets a visit if a-never-before-seen-engine-light starts flashing. So, when your relationship’s in need of a health check, why be embarrassed or ashamed of seeking help + doing what you can to make it better?

To those who are ready + willing to take responsibility for getting-back-to-happy + ensuring they stay there, I salute you. There’s no shame in wanting to protect what’s most precious in your life so you can learn to dance a better dance, one that supports each other in harmonious flow, as nothing quite beats that feeling.

Try this:

  1. Remember what attracted you to each other in the first place | Embrace it.
  2. What one thing can you appreciate in your partner, right now | Tell them.
  3. When’s the last time you went on a date-night or cooked together? | Do it. Have fun!
  4. How do you show love for each other? (+ yes, sometimes it’s by putting out the bins or picking up your stuff that’s been left lying around) | Often it’s the simple things.

What encourages me is witnessing healthier attitudes towards understanding each other + a willingness to acknowledge the cracks when they start to show. It’s okay to get help + do what you need to get back on track.  I increasingly work with couples in their 30s + 40s who want to get-to-really-know + better understand each other, to avoid their parents’ pitfalls + turn “silent movie syndrome” into conversations that build connection, intimacy + then some.

So when you get beneath the layers of what seems impossible-to-tackle + truly learn how to connect, your dance becomes just that – a beautiful harmonious two-step.

Here’s to Fred + Ginger.