The couples who come to my office for couples therapy are constantly wondering, “What is the secret to creating a lasting relationship?”
The answer is learning to create a relationship that’s based on mutuality. So today, in Part II of How to Build a Lasting Relationship with Your Partner, I’ll be teaching you more about this important principle so you can put it to work for you in your relationship.
As I said in Part I, mutuality means that everything you do in your relationship needs to be good for both people—good for you and good for your partner. It’s critical that couples can depend on each other to make the relationship a great place for both of them. The thing is that we all come to our intimate relationships with a message that can get in the way of being able to do this. This message, which we’ve inherited from our culture and often from our families of origin, tells us that depending on another person to do anything for us is a bad thing.
Do You Have Each Other’s Back?
Many people come to my couples therapy practice saying that they don’t think that they should have to “look after” their partner in any way and that they don’t expect their partner to look after them in any way.
But, this philosophy is going to create big problems for you in your relationship.
The truth is that the idea that we each need to take care of ourselves in a relationship actually doesn’t hold up well in relationship. And that’s because fundamentally, nobody wants to be in a relationship where they are being treated unfairly or insensitively by the person closest to them.
So the approach to relationship which is, “You take care of yourself and I’ll take care of myself,” actually makes couples very unhappy. It creates a lot of frustration and pain, and makes people feel very unsafe. That’s because we all need to feel like the person closest to us has our back. So when we create something that is truly fair, just and sensitive for both people, what this does is it actually allows us to free up resources to further our development.
Creating Safety and Security in Your Relationship is Paramount
Now, we are no longer worried about whether or not our partner is thinking of us, whether they are going to be holding our concerns with the same degree of importance as our own. We know we’ve got each other’s back, we know we are not going to drop each other. And if anything happens between us that does not feel good we are going to fix that right away. So we are able to take those basic concerns about our safety and security in the relationship off the table.
When we are not feeling threatened in the relationship any more, we are going to have a lot more resources to use to live our lives.
So if you really want to build a strong relationship with your partner, mutuality—good for me, good for you—needs to be the cornerstone of how you treat each other. In my future videos, I’m going to talk more about exactly how to do that, so I look forward to you joining me for those.
Investing in Your Relationship Leads to a Long, Happy Life Together
If you are a couple and don’t have a couples therapist to walk with you every step of the way to help you get a lasting relationship based on enduring love, let’s connect by phone and see how I can help you get the results you want much faster.
You can call me at the number below or leave me your name and email below.
Looking forward to speaking with you soon.
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To find out about more about my use of PACT (a Psychobiological Approach to Couples Therapy), click here.