Segment 1 - Making the Leap - Why Couples Come to Relationship Counseling

Wendy Barth - Is Your Relationship Successful.jpg

Steven:    This is the Forge Your Potential podcast and my name is Steven Connor. 
Dustyn:    And my name is Dustyn Stevens. 
Steven:    Forge Your Potential was created to demonstrate that your ideas and passions aren't only your dreams ...
Dustyn:    They can actually be your reality. 
Steven:    Welcome to the Forge Your Potential... Jump right into it. Super laid back, we're not like crazy structured around here. Before we get too far into anything, we better recap on who you are Wendy for everybody out there listening and what you do and a little bit of your back story. 
Wendy:    Okay, well my name is Wendy Barth and I'm a clinical social worker and I am now doing almost exclusively couples therapy, probably for about the last four and a half years. 
Dustyn:    So how big of a step is to, not only realize that you were having problems in your relationship but take that step, take that jump, and decide that you want to go to counseling. Do you find that that is a big thing for a lot people?
Wendy:    Oh it's a huge thing. I think there's a statistic that says most people wait six or seven years before they go get help, and a lot of times people are on the verge of splitting up by the time they decide to initiate that, or they just don't know what to do. 
Steven:    I definitely think it's a huge step for people to actually commit to that and to show up and to make that effort. It's incredible. So what do you see most common for, I don't know if there is anything that's most common for couples coming in to see you, and what are the problems that they're facing? What's the most common thing that you run into?
Wendy:    Well most of the time couples come in with this idea like oh we have communication problems and when it really comes down to it, it's more about a fear problem. Like the fear of losing you. The fear of saying the wrong thing, so we have to get down to that because the truth is when people feel good about each other and they feel safe, they have no problems communicating. 
Steven:    Right. 
Wendy:    It just comes out. Sometimes people will come in and say, "I'm just so bad at communicating." Well you're really bad at communicating when you're scared. 
Steven:    Yeah exactly. Why is that? Like why are you bad at communicating?
Wendy:    Yeah. 
Steven:    Then taking it a step further. No, that's incredible insight because I think 90% of people out there would say any issues they have in their relationship is communication. But again kind of looking into ourselves and recognizing whether or not we have those fears to just live completely truthfully to ourselves and to our partner and things, that can be scary for a lot of people. 
Wendy:    Well sure, it's one of the biggest vulnerabilities that we face as people because we desperately are wired for attachment and we want to be close and we're also afraid of it, because that's a painful thing to think about losing the person that you love. So there is always this longing and this fear that are up and running at the same time.