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My name is Keena Hudson and I have been a counsellor in the Sutherland Shire for 20 years. Making an appointment to see a counsellor c...

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Trashing and Cherishing

When a couple first fall in love they emphasise each other’s good points. Tidy, fun or good with money. They cherish their partner, and emphasise their good points. They look for the evidence that these qualities outweigh the negative. They feel so lucky to have this special person in their lives, and often express appreciation to their partner

Fast forward a few years, and tidy, fun or good with money can become obsessive, irresponsible or stingy. When a relationship is not working, the first indication is that one or both partners begin trashing the other. They nurture resentment and emphasise (in their minds) their partner’s negative qualities. They gather evidence that the negatives outweigh the positives. They focus both on qualities the partner doesn’t have, and flaws they do have. And all this may be true. We are all flawed human beings, but none of us like to see only our flaws emphasised.
The tragedy of trashing is that people stop noticing the good things about their partner. The good things their partner does, the qualities they do have. This makes it very difficult for the partner to make changes, because changes won’t be noticed. And good deeds that go unnoticed may not be repeated. The partner feels like they can never win, why bother, what’s the point. You can see how this will lead to further corrosion of the goodwill between a couple.

So the moral of the story is: Be on the lookout for the things your partner does right, the things you appreciate about them. Notice the good things, and let your partner know that you notice them. Thank them for what they do, the mundane and the extraordinary. Use these opportunities to build a positive atmosphere between you.


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