Here we are, approaching our second Valentine’s Day during the COVID-19 pandemic. In mid- February 2020 we were still fairly unaware of the seriousness of the virus and how it would impact our lives for years to come. Last year and this year we were asked to remain home for months, and change activities to keep our families, our community and ourselves safe. Some of us are with our partners 24 hours daily in our homes. Some of us are working and/or caring for children. Some have lost income, and some fear the future possibilities as the science continues to unfold. Couples and families in prior years worried about schedules being too busy and not having enough time together. Now couples are struggling with too much time together.
Holidays can be full of joy, connection, love, stress and disappointment. Valentine’s Day is, in modern times, usually a time for couples to celebrate love and romance going all out with dining, cards, gifts and flowers. My husband and I were married on Valentine’s Day. This year has brought many couples closer in positive ways reporting a more relaxed pace and more time together with less outside commitments and distractions. Yet, since the virus spread through the country surveys (the good and bad news about family life in America) show that around one-third of couples have faced traumatic stress in their marriage in 2020. These statistics seem to suggest that the added time and togetherness, financial stress, family strife and more are just exaggerating and exposing issues present in many relationships prior to the pandemic.
Singles who would prefer to couple may be feeling particularly sad this Valentine’s Day. Some singles may have coupled with people they were dating, as the virus became more life restricting and may now be experiencing challenges in these relationships. Some wonder how to meet someone and be safe with so few places to go on a date.
If you feel like your relationship could use a refresh, new skills to deepen your sense of connection with your partner, or strengthened communication skills would be helpful, Imago Relational Therapy may be for you and could be a wonderful gift in the spirit of Valentine’s Day or any time of the year.
I am a certified Imago Therapist and love working with couples and singles who seek to find and keep the love they have. I was personally & professionally transformed by my knowledge of relationships as I experienced Imago Therapy. It has changed how I work with all people who attend therapy with me and it brings deep connection, playfulness, and joy into my personal relationship with my partner every day. I have seen couples embrace the concepts, dialogues, and skills that are taught and experienced from your first session and go from being locked into a cycle of arguments, losing sight of what they first saw in the other to falling back in love with a deeper sense of connection and empathy for the other and feeling a renewed sense of excitement and a future full of possibility.
Imago provides clear answers to these questions, supported by the work of great psychologists, from Freud to neuroscience. Harville Hendrix and Helen LaKelly Hunt have adapted these insights into a series of dialogue-based exercises. These exercises help you and your partner understand why you were attracted to each other, and why those reasons drew you into a cycle of disagreement that we call the power struggle.
Imago teaches that this power struggle is a natural part of your relationship. Through the Imago dialogue you can discover that the power struggle has a purpose: to help you both grow, and together experience the deep joy of true love. If you have more questions please call for more information or visit the Imago Web Site links below.
Leslie Sullivan, LPC, NCC, CAADC