Peter’s couple therapy blog

A new love

A new love is not only a new beginning. We carry into it all our old stuff – whatever we may tell ourselves that this time it is different. Our carry-on luggage is in the overhead compartment of our heart ship – in the limbic system of our brain. Housed there it has no sense of time or place – it just feels, and bonds and attaches, remembers and repeats until healing in body and mind slowly shifts outmoded relationship patterns. These were built one disconnection at a time.

One way to think about these patterns is as existential issues. A new love won’t answer the existential questions we all face but it does give a temporary reprieve. Existential dilemmas are like the scaffolding of the life you are building – your own life path walked in your own two feet. The seven issues below shape all our relationships!

1• Loving involves pain and, ultimately, abandonment or separation
2• Suddenly or gradually, we will lose our physical abilities
3• Regardless of how we are treated, we are responsible for how we express our feelings
4• As we get older, more and more people become sexually ineligible or uninterested in us
5• We have made life choices with consequences we don’t like
6• We can’t prevent the people we love from making mistakes or suffering
7• Some people who have mistreated us are going to get away with it

Existential Issues in Psychotherapy and Couples Counseling

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