Bethany married Blaine because he was smart and sensitive and understanding. Blaine was so different than the other men she had dated. Blaine said he was always supportive of Bethany. Blaine felt they communicated well and that they compromised often. In fact their friends thought they were the model couple. Despite what their friends thought Bethany and Blaine were miserable. Bethany had stopped working because she wanted to stay at home with their children (but now the kids were older and in school.) Blaine admitted that he was depressed, and worried about their finances. Even though they spent most of their time together they did NOT enjoy that time. Bethany was looking for something more. She encouraged Blaine to be open and honest about their sex life, but this backfired. Blaine admitted that he was uncomfortable with their sex life, and that he really did not enjoy the same things she did. Bethany tried to be understanding and backed off sexually. This led to even less sex and less excitement. They were coming for therapy because Bethany wanted out. She was unfulfilled; she felt their relationship was boring. She said, “I just want there to be some excitement, again.”
Blaine said, “I love her, but I am Not In Love with her.”
These relationship double-binds are as frustrating as a soup-sandwich...
How do you overcome them...?
No confidentiality was breached in this article.
The stories in this essay are not actual clients,
but composites from several clients,
cases I have supervised
and people I have known personally.