Relationships, Marriage & Family

Relationships can be our greatest source of joy or pain.  When relationships are not working well it makes sense to seek help.  Dr. Edwards has worked with relationship issues for 30 years.  These types of relationships are commonly addressed:

» Couples
» Spouses
» Engaged couples or those deciding whether or not to marry
» Parent/Child
» Employer/employee, or other work related
» Families
» Child/aging parent

The hallmark of satisfying relationships is that each person feels that important rewards will be experienced in their relationship. Often distressed couples will decrease their rewarding behavior toward their spouse because they feel they are not receiving rewards from their spouse. This follows the rule of reciprocity in relationships-- you give what you get. Thus, if you get rewarded, you will probably reward your spouse. Similarly, if you get punished, you will probably punish your spouse through either withdrawal or criticism. The unfortunate outcome for distressed couples is that as one spouse decreases rewards, the other spouse also decreases rewards, thereby confirming each spouse's belief that the relationship is unrewarding.

Steps to enhance couples’ relationships include;

identifying rewarding behavior,
taking responsibility for changing yourself,
building on the positive,
identifying and changing unrealistic expectations or thinking patterns,
learning to argue in a productive way,
learning to listen empathically,
and learning to solve problems.

Keep in mind-- having problems in a relationship is not the problem. The problem is not having a way to resolve the problem.   We all need to grow in our relational skills.

Parents often come seeking strategies to help with child discipline, to get both partners on the same parenting page, to address special needs children, to deal with drug or alcohol use by their kids, etc.  Raising children into responsible adults requires all the skills most of possess plus a few we need to learn.

Couples who are considering marriage often come to Dr. Edwards to address relationship issues prior to getting married.  This pre-marital work can help them resolve differences in a constructive manner.
William L Edwards, PhD. 2009. All right reserved. Privacy Policy | continuing web development