ENCORE EDITION-10 RELATIONSHIP MYTHS| 4.19.2023
In this encore episode, Kristen debunks the 10 relationship myths and provides practical advice on how to communicate better and have deeper intimacy in your relationship.
- How the 10 relationship myths can lead to unrealistic expectations and resentments
- What kills relationships
- How to improve communication and understanding between partners
- The importance of doing your own work in order to have a healthy relationship
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Welcome to the close the chapter podcast. I am Kristen Boice a licenced Marriage and Family Therapist with a private practice Pathways to Healing counselling. Through conversations, education, strategies and shared stories we will be closing the chapter on all the thoughts, feelings, people and circumstances that don't serve you anymore and open the door to possibilities and the real you. You won't want to miss an episode so be sure to subscribe
Welcome to this week's Close the Chapter podcast I am so excited to be bringing who the 10 relationship myths. This was such a good episode. And I thought we bring it back because I want to reiterate the 10 myths and we'll love to hear your opinion on these. So feel free to tag me on social at Kristen D Boice. On Instagram and Facebook and Kristen Boice on Tik Tok. So let me know your thoughts on this. If you already listened to it the first time this is a repeat for you, I highly encourage you to listen to it again and get something else out of it. Expand your thinking. Open your heart Centre. Also grab the free journal and use it with this episode at kristendboice.com/freeresources you will get the free journal emailed to you. This will help you along your healing journey. So without further ado, here is the 10 myths in relationships passed along to those that you want to talk about this with have more conversation about your relationship or your previous relationships. Hope you enjoy this episode. As a marriage and family therapist. This is a critical conversation for anybody in a relationship or wants to be in a relationship or has been in a relationship. It's the 10 relationship myths. It's like the Mythbusters. So you're gonna want to listen to all of this episode to find out all 10 I want to first tell you some good news. I love hearing where our broadcast reaches. And we were one of the top mental health podcasts in Ireland. We've been in New Zealand, Australia, the UK, I am just so grateful that this is reaching across the world. And we are embarking on changing the conversation around emotional wellness and mental health. Thank you. Thank you, thank you, I was so excited that we are going to embark on more authentic, deep real conversations to create a healthier relationship with ourselves and others. So thank you million times over please feel free to join the close the chapter Facebook group under you just type in close the chapter. So we can build a community of people that are doing this deeper work. And if you go kristendboice.com/freeresources you can get the five day free transformational journal and get on the mailing list for the weekly newsletter which I give tonnes of content helpful information you're like the first to know about any speaking engagements, future podcasts, YouTube uploads all the things so you'll definitely want to jump on the mailing list so you don't miss a thing. And we're building a community of people that are doing this deeper work. So I'm so proud of you for even showing up on this podcast, sharing it with a friend or your partner, someone that you want to journey together with and grow with. There's no greater gift you can give yourself or someone else than growth, truly self compassion, empathy, growth, warps, those are all gifts we can give.
Okay, we're going to jump right into today's episode, the 10 relationship myths grab a pen and paper if you don't have one right now that's okay can write these down later or just take them in and reflect on your own journey, your own relationship journey. So you can take this and apply it to your life. Okay, here we go. We're going in. We're going to start with number one. These are in no particular order. As a licenced marriage and family therapist. I have seen this play out repeatedly in the counselling room. And in relationships. Let's all admit we've done this a time or two. Come on. We've all wanted someone to read our minds and to know what we're feeling and to know our triggers. And so here's number one. If my partner really loves me, or have partners really love each other, they should know how I feel and know exactly what they did to upset me. This is something I Want to just blow up because they can't read our minds? We expect them to just know how we're feeling and what's going to trigger us and what mood I'm in and how to approach me. Here's the bottom line. One day, you may need a hug the next day or like, Don't touch me. One day, you're like, please validate how I feel. And the next day you're like, Don't patronise me, one day, you want to hold hands, and the next day, you feel disgusted. Depends on the day. And here's the bottom line. We cannot be mind readers, it sets up unrealistic expectations. And as an Lamotte says, expectations are resentments waiting to happen. I see these play out in relationships all the time, the expectation that you should just know how I feel false. Especially we have these gender kind of roles. And historically, men have been conditioned out of their feelings. So how are they going to know how women feel when they weren't allowed to feel they were told that their babies or fill in the blank, what they were told, and then they get into these relationships, and then we feel disconnected because they don't get us. You have to communicate, I feel sad, I feel scared, I feel angry, I feel disgusted, our core emotions that we've gone over. If you don't know what those are Inside Out movie, I'll go over them one more time. You can't hear this too many times, 2000 times for us to learn something. When we communicate, we need to use an I feel with a core emotion in there. Here they are anger which can also be secondary. So ask yourself, what else am I feeling? If you're angry, explore what else might be there. We have sadness, disgust, fear, I see a tonne of sadness of fear right now. We have joy, excitement and sexual excitement. So those are the emotions I want you to communicate from, because we can't read each other's minds, that sets up such an unhealthy unrealistic expectation. When we're babies, our parents are supposed to be in tune enough to know what we need. When we're toddlers when we're children. That's the job of parents. It's not the job of our partner. It's not the job of our partner to read our minds or know what we feel. It's a fantasy. Our inner child says I want everybody to know how I feel. Well, that was the job of our parents, and when they aren't comfortable with their own feelings. So they can't tolerate our feelings. They discipline they punish. There's all kinds of messages out there that takes them away from us, allowing us to have our feelings and then we get in these relationships as adults. And we're so disconnected. And yet we want someone to care for us. We want someone to see us, we want to feel important. We want to feel like we matter. We put all of that on our partner, and we don't communicate. So it's up to us to own it. It's up to us to communicate it. Do not set that expectation up in your relationship. Bill want to blow that one up. Okay, let's head to number two. What's number two? happy couples never fight? Oh, my goodness. Where did this come from? Did this come from Disney movies? Did this come from a fantasy? Because maybe our parents fought a lot. Did this come from a hope, a wish and a desire that there would be no fighting? It's not true. Let me give you the flip side of the coin. I've had couples come in married 25 years, never fought. And they looked at each other and like, Yeah, I'm done with this relationship because there was nothing there. They didn't do vulnerability. They didn't communicate what the truth was inside. They just disconnected. And they didn't want to disrupt the applecart. They didn't want to upset anybody. They didn't want to cause any rift, they were the peacemaker, maybe in the family, they were an avoider, they were in denial. And what happens is there's no deep connection that you're going to have disagreements, it's going to happen, you cannot get out of this category for free. It's actually healthy. If you learn to do it in a healthy way.
We're afraid to fight quote, unquote, fight or disagree because of what we saw on our family systems. We didn't see people actually disagree in a healthy way. Or maybe you did, which is fantastic. Most people didn't. So they don't know how to work through conflict. They don't know how to acknowledge where someone's coming from, self regulate self soothe centre and ground themselves, and then say how they feel and then be heard, and listen, to understand and acknowledge and empathise, what the person is saying we didn't see that. We saw maybe it went from zero to 10. There was yelling, there was dysregulation there were screaming. There might have been some domestic violence. And that's not what we're talking about. Here. We're talking about disagreements. Because if you're in a domestic violence situation, that's situation to get some help. We don't want you to stay in and anything like that any kind of abusive relationship. So let's go back to this myth that happy couples never fight, we will not fight or have any conflict, not true. And then the first hint that there's conflict, we're in trouble. So I want you to listen to episode 100, I've got a special surprise for episode 100. We're going to talk about this a little bit more. So you want to make sure you tune in to the next couple of episodes, it's going to be a golden nugget here, okay? We want foundational principles to be a play that you will have disagreements, you will get into fights, don't freak out. You can work it out, as long as two people are willing to work it out. And then people say well, what if someone's not willing to work it out, then you do your own work? Can't change another person, stay the course on doing your own inner child work, which means work on your patterns work on what your childhood stuff? Or going on new traumas, we all have them focused on that. Okay, let's get into myth. Number three, I feel like we need a drumroll like, Okay, that was me making the general you get the idea. Okay, number three, we will like all the same things. Say what? Who told you that you're going to like all the same things? That's not realistic, there's absolutely no way you're going to like all the same things. That's why food can be an issue. That's why were we going to travel can be an issue. That's why parenting can be an issue. Because we were raised differently. We all have different needs, desires. And once a lot of the needs overlap, but we all have different desires. And it's okay. It's okay, we learn to acknowledge what the other person wants, we learn to say, Oh, I'm willing to do this. And there's called compromise. You don't have to like all the same things. Is it nice to have some things in common? Yes. Because those are things you can come together on. Like, maybe you like to travel, hike, explore, kayak, maybe you like to boat, maybe there's a special interest in running, jogging, walking paths, the list goes on that home renovations that you like to do together. And then there's some things where you know, you really don't like the same thing, and you're willing to support your partner in it. So for example, my husband bought kind of a boat that needs a lot of work, and he wants to fix it up and do it all himself, which I think is fantastic. I'm not that interested. And he doesn't care if I'm not there helping him. And I try to show interest, like, oh, wow, that's exciting. To show that I do care about what he cares about is may not be my thing. And that's okay. It doesn't have to be the same thing. So when you can get excited for your partner, something they're excited about. It's like a best friend that cheers you on. Be that for your partner, be that for yourself, and be that for your partner, be a cheerleader being encouraged her. I really been intentional about this this year, even with COVID Be intentional about giving helpful, excitement, feedback, acknowledgement to each other. Okay, let's get into number four. Good relationships are easy and don't require work. Oh, my goodness, how many times have I heard it shouldn't be this hard, says who relationships that are worth it are going to be work. Now I must say if you do a lot of work at the beginning of a relationship, you're going to have different transitions in life that are going to be more work than others. If you get a healthy foundation in place, you're going to have work, it won't feel like as much work relationships or work. Parenting is work. There's no way around it. In order to have healthy relationships, we have to do our own work, we have to own our own issues. We have to take responsibility that our work maturity remains means responsibility. And it means there will be work life has work. There is no finish line. That's the another myth. That's a bonus myth that's not on my list. But life there is no finish line for self development. There's breaks, there's rest. And I don't mean like there's always you have to be the best of the best. It means oh, I need to kind of check in with myself. Check in with what my feelings are, what my body's sensations are, and my thinking and see what's there for me to explore and get curious about curiosity is such a gift when it comes to couples and relationships with yourself and other people. So the myth that it's not going to require work a I want to send alarm bell, like so big list that is not true or realistic. Okay. And sometimes it's easy. I'm not saying that I'm not saying it's always work. I'm saying it will be work related. All relationships are work with yourself and others all relationships are work. How do we define work? We define work by how much effort we put into our relationship with ourselves and others. Number five, talking about past emotional wounds will only make them worse. No, that's a fear of so many people. Talking about past emotional wounds will only make them worse. Myth number five. I hear you. It's scary. I see you that you're afraid to unleash unlock Pandora's box and you won't be able to function. That's the inner wounded part that is so afraid to go there, to the emotional pain to the memories to the hurt. What I want to say is have someone walk through it with you. A therapist is fantastic. You can do it via telehealth or in person, get a support group. There's free ones all over the internet, no matter what the issue is, if it's previous sexual abuse, I recommend therapy EMDR brainspotting. Maybe have an addiction issue a Al Anon for family members Codependents Anonymous coda, there's Overeaters Anonymous, there are so many support groups grief share, if you're in grief, please pick one person, don't try to do it alone. And open up and let your partner know, I'm putting under the guise of a safe partnership here. Here's the deal. I'm getting really passionate, because I'm so passionate about this, because I know how scary it is to go back and reprocess. And go back to this, that emotional pain. And what I know is that's where the freedom comes in. When you go back, when you tend to when you nurture when you really go back, and clean that out. So it's not running your shell. It's like cleaning up your hard drive. So it's not overheating, and you're not exhausted and worn out. It's a game changer. So just depressing and moving away and denying and minimising and bypassing what you really feel and all those wounds doesn't make it better. That makes it worse, you feel stuck. We need to nurture that we need to attend to that. You can't change someone else. But you can work on what lies within. And I want to encourage you with that, okay, let's go to number six, getting married or having a baby. Or more kids. I heard this so many times, they just want another kid or they just want a baby, or they just want to get married. And that will solve relationship issues and bring us together. This is like the biggest I want to blow up. You know, one of those big Foghorn are those big horns going don't do it because it's not fair to the kid. It's not fair to bring another child in or a baby into a situation that isn't stable. Research says children need two things to feel secure in the world. One is warmth. So empathy, compassion, emotional connection, safety. Number two is consistency and routine. And if you're not consistently, emotionally centred, or the person you're with, there's no business bringing a child into that. Do repeat generational patterns, it does not solve relationship issues. It does not heal the inner child within because you have to be responsible for all of these needs is somebody else and getting married. Does it bring people closer together, doing the work, doing your own deeper work? They're doing their work that brings you closer together learning how to communicate in a healthy way. Okay, number seven, the number seven greatest myth in relationships is never go to bed angry. How many times have you heard that never go to bed angry? What I have found with couples, those are like I will we were up till 3am Trying to work this out. And it made it worse? Well, yes, because you're exhausted. It's not the time. And then you have to get up with the kids, or you have to get up for work. That is not the time to be working out problems. You know, sometimes it's best to put yourself to bed and then come back to it. So what I recommend couples do is they say, I know we need to work this out. And this doesn't feel good to us. I think we need to sleep on it. And then let's talk about it tomorrow when we're both in a better space and nine times out of 10. They're able to work through it when they're centred. When their brain is clear. They're not brain fog. They're not extremely triggered and not able to self soothe. We have to be able to self regulate to work through and problem solve to get to that prefrontal cortex. Otherwise we're going to be in fight flight freeze or fawn. And we're not going to be able to work through the problem so it's okay to tell your partner I love you and because acknowledgement sandwich, acknowledge your part You're and say I feel exhausted and sad and afraid if we keep going tonight, we're going to continue to make this worse and I love you so much. And I would really love to talk about it in the morning. See how I did that acknowledgement sandwich I acknowledged I shared how I felt with an I feel. And then I closed out with another acknowledgement. You can go to bed angry and work it out the next day. It's okay, I promise you, as long as you circle back to it, Okay, number eight, we will not change we will always feel how we feel right now, this honeymoon phase now the honeymoon phase will come and go the honeymoon phase is at the very beginning of a relationship. Can you create deeper connection and a relationship? Yes. Will you always have this euphoric feeling? No. We know through research that that doesn't last. What does create lasting sustainability is a deep emotional connection, excellent communication and warmth and safety and consistency in the relationship. That is what creates healthy, connected relationships. What kills relationships are the four relationship killers, the four apocalypse of relationships, which is on a previous podcast, Dr. John and Julie Gottman came up with these and these are really defence mechanisms. And they can tell within pretty much minutes whether a couple will last and now doing this after 18 years, it's pretty quick that I can see what is pretty cemented with a couple and the four relationship killers are contempt, which is can be so toxic contempt, and that's really rooted in inner child stuff. Contempt criticism, also rooted in inner child and trauma. stonewalling, which means I'm avoiding a minimise it, I won't talk about it, and withdrawing. And if we see those consistently, we will see that those will kill relationships. So those are really red flags at the beginning of a relationship and need to go into therapy. If you see these consistently coming up in your relationship now. Okay, number nine, happy couples have sex all the time. And who said that there is absolutely zero research out there that merits that truth? Zero. emotional connection comes before physical intimacy. emotional connection is what breeds physical connection. And there's no set number of times. Because what it is, is it's about do you feel seen? Do you feel emotionally safe? Do you feel connected, and it's not up to the other person to make you feel that way that's up to you to do your own work to bring that to the relationship and pick somebody that is capable and has a growth mindset. Pick somebody that values growing? It's so important, and we aren't taught that at a young age. We're not taught to pick somebody that has a growth mindset. Okay, here we are at number 10. I went pretty quickly through these because there's so much we could go into with them, but I wanted to give you the top 10 Okay, number 10 couples therapy means your marriage or relationship is in trouble. Couples Therapy means your marriage or relationship is in trouble. No, this is a myth. That means you actually want a healthy relationship to break generational patterns, to be able to communicate in a healthy way and have deeper emotional intimacy. Go to couples therapy, don't be afraid and no it's a lot of notes anxious and scary. Go to a marriage and family therapist the licenced you'll see an L licenced M marriage F family T therapist LM ft you can google it licenced Marriage and Family Therapist LMFT. That's what I am in. We have special training in systems and how to help couples find healing individually and together and we look at patterns on what's keeping them stuck, then we can create a healthy family system is one of the things I'm super passionate about. But this is the thing that really, I would say keeps people stuck are these expectations, these myths, that when they come into therapy, they think that the other person needs to change. I find that this person needs to change. And what happens is you're pointing at the other person but you've got three fingers pointing back at yourself and you got to do your own work. How have you contributed to the issues in the relationship and being honest about yourself being honest about the dynamic exploring where you had blinders on? Where you might have been denial or maizing things and now you know what's realistic and relationships and what's not realistic. They are work and in couples therapy I'm like on a zero to two 10 How committed are you to doing the work 10 Being I'll do whatever it takes zero, none at all. And sometimes we have people that are at a 10. And then I have people that are at a one, and they're married. And that's a whole nother conversation. Because there's a lot there to explore. If we don't open up to our partner, you're not going to feel connected. If you don't learn how to acknowledge your own feelings, you're not going to be able to acknowledge someone else's. This isn't going to be a movie, this relationship. They're not like movies, they're not. There's a lot of growth and think about how much you've changed. Since you've been maybe with this person, or just even with yourself, we think that this person's never going to change. Yeah, they are, we're going to grow, we're going to evolve, or maybe they're stuck and frozen in time. Maybe they're stuck in adolescence emotionally. So here's my invitation for you get the five day journal, Kristen D boice.com, forward slash free resources, get that start doing your own work, you can't change somebody else. That's the other myth. I should add that as number 11, you cannot change somebody else, I can change somebody else that may be the myth. No, we can't. And know that there is hope for healing, transformation and freedom. Otherwise, I wouldn't be doing this podcast, I want to get as much helpful information out to the world as possible in expectations, and realistic thinking, what I call reality. Sometimes I don't want to live in reality, but we have to help us navigate healing. We heal when we are in the reality of situations and we make a decision, we make a decision to face it to explore the emotions around it to explore the body sensations, and what our thoughts are and beliefs and a whole bunch of fears. So now that you know these 10 relationship myths, pick one that you're gonna say, You know what, I'm gonna really work on changing my mindset around that. And maybe there's more than one awesome and share this with somebody that it might benefit it might help, and then talk about it. Let's change the conversation around emotional wellness and mental health.
Thank you a million times over I know I said at the beginning can't see it too many times for tuning in, and really working on you to free yourself from what keeps just tethered and stuck and shamed. I'm with you, and cheering you on. And I'll catch you on the next episode. Be sure to keep your ears peeled for episode 100. Thank you for being you. Have a great week everyone.
Thank you so much for listening to the Close the Chapter podcast. My hope is that you took home some actionable steps, along with motivation, inspiration and hope for making sustainable change in your life. If you enjoyed this episode, click the subscribe button to be sure to get the updated episodes every week and share with a friend or a family member. For more information about how to get connected visit kristendboice.com. Thanks and have a great day.
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