Transform your life: Our New Breaking Free Workshop

Breaking Free Workshop (2)Do you frequently feel anxious or depressed?

Do you struggle with anger and resentment?

Does your life feel unreasonably hard or unmanageable?

At The Marriage Place, we have discovered that traditional talk therapy alone doesn’t always help couples improve their relationship. Sometimes, you have to go deeper and look at how childhood experiences have shaped the way you view yourself and the world.

Breaking Free From Our Pasts

Many people were never taught the skills they need to learn how to be in functional, healthy relationships with themselves. As a result, they look to other people to help them feel whole and happy. Invariably, those relationships don’t work in the long term because happiness comes from within us.

Maya Angelou said “I don’t trust people who don’t love themselves and tell me, ‘I love you.’…There is an African saying which is: Be careful when a naked person offers you a shirt.”

We cannot love someone else in a mature way if we don’t love ourselves. Our partners cannot fill the emptiness that comes from not loving ourselves.

If we don’t have a good sense of who we are and what we need, we try to get this validation from others.

Certain Patterns Create Chaos

All this wanting and needing creates patterns of chaos that are often unbearably painful to endure. These patterns include frequent arguing and fighting, control issues and a combination of clinging and abandoning behaviors. We do all of these things in an attempt to get the love we need. Oftentimes, other elements are added in to alleviate the misery of feeling so unhappy.

Those other elements might include:

  • Drugs & alcohol
  • Pornography
  • Affairs (emotional & physical)
  • Gaming and computer time
  • Shopping
  • Gambling
  • Food Addictions
  • Frequent suicidal thoughts

Once these elements are added, life can get completely out of control very quickly.

But it doesn’t have to be this way.

You can learn how to live your life in a way that empowers you to love and be loved by others–functionally, with maturity and grace.

You can overcome feelings of shame and worthlessness.

You can learn how to live authentically without hiding behind walls and masks.

You can control your anger so others aren’t intimidated by you.

About the Breaking Free Workshop

The Marriage Place is now offering a three-day intensive we call the Breaking Free Workshop. We call it that because our clients who have gone through this tell us they feel they have broken free of childhood wounds that have caused them to feel stuck, insecure and uncertain about themselves.

Here are some of the situations of clients who have benefited the most from our workshop.

(Names have been changed for privacy. )

Jerry is often angry and defensive.

His wife and kids walk on eggshells around him, but he just thinks they are overly sensitive. After the workshop, Jerry has a clear understanding of where all his anger comes from and exactly how it affects his family today.

He is now working on making amends to his family and is showing up very differently in his marriage.

Sam feels alone in his marriage.

His wife is very opinionated, and Sam often gives in to avoid an argument. He just doesn’t feel it’s worth it to say how he feels or what he wants. But this silence has created a sense of deadness in his marriage, and his wife feels alone. She wants Sam to participate in their life together and to be more present.

Sam came to the Breaking Free Workshop to learn why he struggles with asking for what he needs. He realized his parents had a lot of big worries to deal with because one of his siblings had physical challenges. Sam felt selfish for needing any attention or help. He learned how to be needless and without wants so he wouldn’t be a burden to anyone else. Now Sam is learning how to speak up for himself. He knows now that healthy relationships have appropriate levels of giving and taking.

Marcia apologizes for everything.

She is always worried that she has upset someone or done something wrong. Her anxiety keeps her up at night as she ruminates on the day and all the things she wishes she had said or done differently. Marcia’s husband and kids don’t treat her very well. She just wants to make everyone happy, but it seems no one is happy with her and she doesn’t understand why. She feels defective and broken. Marcia’s mother could be extremely critical and sometimes cruel.

Marcia learned that she needed to earn love and approval, and she has been following that template her whole life. Now she is learning how to love herself. She is learning when and how to say “no” to those who are taking advantage of her.

Amy struggles with depression and feelings of suicide.

She has tried a number of medications and therapy, but nothing seems to work very well. In her darkest moments, she hates herself. She feels broken and defective. Amy grew up in a home where she was frequently shamed and criticized. She internalized those messages until they became part of her self narrative.

After attending the workshop, Amy knows the shame she feels isn’t her hers to carry any longer. She was able to give back those feelings of worthlessness to the people who passed them along to her. Today, she is doing so much better and feels more hopeful about her future. Even her family and co-workers have noticed a “lightness” about her.

Do you resonate with any of these stories?

We all carry messages we were given as children into our adult lives. These messages become internalized and form the lens with which we view the world and ourselves. If that lens is distorted, we often go through life with an emotional limp.

Our workshop will help you break free from those distortions and see yourself authentically. Once you change your narrative, hang on for a wild ride – your life with endless possibilities!

For more information on our Breaking Free Workshop, click here, Or contact us here to sign up today!

How To Tell Your Spouse You Cheated

how to confess infidelityIf you used the ever popular Ashley Madison site you may soon be busted. Hackers have gained access to millions of names and they are threatening releasing these names to the public if the site isn’t shut down.  Ashley Madison makes millions of dollars a year. They aren’t closing shop, so if there is a possibility your name is on the list, you need to know your spouse may soon be finding out.  If you want to save your marriage, there are steps you can take to increase your chances.

ashley madison hack

If your name could be on that list, you are probably tempted to wait and see if the news will go public.  Why tell the truth, risk your marriage and cause your spouse all this pain if there is even a remote possibility the names won’t be shared?

I can give you two reasons why you need to confess your infidelity:

  1. If you want any hope of saving your marriage, this is your next best move and
  2. You have a fairly good chance of being caught whether your name is leaked or not.  Secrets have a way of being found.

If your name is on that list…I’m sorry.  I’m sorry you are probably having to worry and stress that your spouse, family, friends and coworkers could find out about your actions. Of course, being found out is always a potential consequence to having an affair. But this kind of very public revelation is going to be painful for everyone involved.  I’m also sorry you chose an affair over confronting the issues that you made vulnerable in this way to begin with.

Having an affair doesn’t have to be the end of your marriage.

If you think your name could be on that list, you need to prepare your spouse and yourself for the fallout.  I’ve outlined some steps to help you navigate this process.

If you’ve used Ashley Madison to have an affair, here’s what to do next:

Step 1:
Immediately close your Ashley Madison account and delete any emails, texts or pictures. If you have a secret email address, close the account.  This isn’t to hide information from your spouse.  This is to keep your spouse from stumbling onto explicit information that can never be unread or unseen.  I’ve worked with many clients in this situation and it is much harder to get past an affair when this level of detail has been shared.

Step 2:
Get ready for questions. You need to be ready to answer the questions that will invariably come.  Your spouse is going to want to know who, how many, where and for how long (and many, many others). It is critical that you are honest and up front from the beginning BUT do not give any graphic details about any encounters with your affair partner.  Don’t be belligerent.

If your spouse asks these kinds of intimate questions, tell him/her you feel this information would only hurt them further.  If they persist. tell them you want to seek advice from a marriage counselor before saying anymore.

Above all, do not lie or deceive to try and minimize damage.  This will only come back to bite you.  I’ve seen it too many times.  Answer honestly and respectfully and if it is a question you aren’t sure whether to answer, be honest about that and why.  When your spouse asks you WHY you did it, do not say anything that remotely sounds like your spouse is to blame. No matter how nagging. mean, neglectful, sexless or thoughtless your spouse may be, you could have chosen anything else besides an affair. Take ownership for your choices.

Step 3:
Be prepared for a wide range of emotions from your spouse. Expect sadness. grief. confusion. anger, hurt and fear.  Your spouse will need time to process this news and what they need from you now is patience, honesty. compassion and remorse.  If your spouse lashes out at you with hurtful words and accusations, do not lash back.  Do not try and justify the affair in any way.  Expect questions to continue for weeks and months. Your job is to stay patient and be honest.

Step 4:
Confess. Your spouse deserves to find out from you–not the internet.  If you wait for the perfect time to have this conversation, you will never have it.  This is obviously a delicate situation.  Tell your spouse you need to talk and find a quiet, private place where you will not be interrupted by kids or the phone.

Do not have this conversation in a public place and do not have it where the kids can even possibly hear you.  The best way to have this conversation is to simply state what happened.  Don’t backtrack or try set this up with long explanations.  Simply tell your spouse you have had an affair.  And tell them why you are telling them now.  Your spouse needs to know this news could be public knowledge.

Step 5:
Accountability.  Expect there to be at least 3-6 months of complete transparency.  Give your spouse all your passwords and access to your phone.  Tell your spouse where you are at all times before they ask you. You have lost your right to privacy for the time being but remember this is only temporary.

Step 6:
Seek help. I strongly advise you get professional help at this point.  See an experienced marriage counselor who can help you both navigate the difficult days ahead.  Make sure you choose a pro marriage or “marriage friendly” therapist who will help you strengthen and restore your relationship.  I also recommend Getting Past The Affair as a resource.

Seek Professional Help

You haven’t made the best choices in the past, but be strong and courageous now.  I sincerely wish you the very best as you fight for your marriage.  Our counselors and coaches are expertly trained to help you get through this.  We are here to help.  Just give us a call at 972-441-4432 or contact us by email.