By Shelton Piland, Supervisee in Clinical Social Work in Northern, VA
Frequently I have clients come in stating that “nothing is particularly wrong” in their relationship or in their marriage, but lately the spark is not there any longer, arguments occur more often and easily and the arguments seem trivial. Both individuals just seem more sensitive to negativity and it creates tension in the household. This seemingly comes out of no where and it is confusing because “It never used to be this way.”
The reason for this is often because couples used to remember why they loved each other. Work life, routine, children and now COVID-19 has taken a toll on couples in a way that they may not be aware of. We do not connect with one another, choose to commit to one another and vow to spend the rest of our lives together solely because we want someone in our lives to support us. We make these decisions because we truly love someone and enjoy their company. This is because earlier in relationships we are usually more POSITIVE. As time goes by and life together becomes more serious we can begin to depend on our significant others to be our own personal therapists.
Constant Negativity Can Take A Toll
Our significant others are here to hold our hands through the journey of life and help hold us up during the most difficult of times, however they are not here to hold us up 100% of the time without a break. Think about your relationship. Do you both come home from work and immediately start complaining about what went wrong that day? Or do you also talk about the good and try to limit negativity? Constant negativity can sneak up on us. We do not even realize we are being this way, but we do realize that our relationships are not what they used to be and that we feel more down than usual. Constant negativity can cause others to pull away and this leaves us feeling alone and sad.
Partners should check in with themselves occasionally and remember ALL of the reasons they love each other. Remember the importance of spending quality time together and being POSITIVE. Laugh together, look forward to things together, and share memories. Never forget the power of positivity!
About Shelton Piland:
Day to day life can be exhausting, stressful and anxiety inducing. It is easier said than done to “enjoy the little things in life” when we have so many outside pressures weighing on us. When we feel overwhelmed by these pressures our mental health and personal relationships can suffer. Shelton hopes to assist you and yours in managing difficult times and strengthening your relationships.
Shelton is a Resident in Clinical Social Work and will be providing services in the Fredericksburg location. She graduated from the University of Mary Washington with a B.A. in Sociology. She received her Masters in Clinical Social Work from Virginia Commonwealth University. Throughout her time at VCU she has worked with elementary, middle school and high school students in the Spotsylvania Public School system, as well as with veterans and their families at the Hunter Holmes McGuire VA Medical Center. She is certified in Motivational Interviewing and in Inter-Professional Collaboration. Shelton has experience working with individuals, children, couples, families, individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, veterans, and hospice patients.