Benjamin Franklin famously wrote: “in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes”. Change is an inevitable part of life. It is as inescapable as the passage of time and is often the precursor to a significant life transition.
Life transitions are typically the most significant milestones in our lives. As a result they often become our greatest undertakings and may well figure in our lives forever.
Change can be something we excitedly look forward to, like getting married or deciding to move in together. Conversely it can be thrust upon us when we least expect it and be completely out with our control; like the redundancy or serious illness of our partner/spouse.
The one common feature of all life transitions is their ability to challenge, unsettle and sometimes unravel our relationships.
Life transitions and relationships
The emotional reactions to life transitions tend not to be black or white, despite what we might anticipate or believe. For example, a couple welcoming the arrival of their first child is expected to be a time of great joy, when an already loving relationship is strengthened and deepened.
But for many parents it actually places significant pressure and strain on their relationship. Post-natal depression, sleepless nights, financial burdens and a lack of time for mum and dad to spend together can damage relationships between them individually and their baby.
Counselling for life transitions
Usually we will work our way through these lifecycle changes with relationships remaining unharmed. Individually, as a couple or with the help of family and friends most of our life transitions will be successfully navigated. But in this increasingly pressured and stressful world it can be helpful to talk to a counsellor.
Working with a relationship counsellor can help with many of the common issues faced during difficult life transitions:
- Understanding the situation and what has driven the emotional response(s)
- Working on techniques and strategies to handle those responses and protect relationships
- Techniques to cope with stress, anxiety and other physiological responses created by difficult life transitions.
Coping with big changes in your life
Relationship counselling can be a great support to individuals, couples and families going through difficult periods of change and transition. Counsellors offer a non-judgemental, neutral and professional perspective on the issues you are facing.
A clearer understanding of how you are feeling can make coping with changes in life easier. Resulting in a strengthening of the relationships many life transitions can damage.
The Spark provides counselling and support for couples, individuals and families across Scotland. Helping clients to work through life transitions is a major part of the work we do. We operate from 17 locations with a team of professional counsellors highly skilled in helping you cope with life’s changes.