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A truly successful relationship has more than love and compatibility; it has Couples Awareness, an approach used in T.E.A.M. Couples Counseling, when we feel understood by our partner. This heightened awareness provides the positive energy for connecting and detecting miscommunication early on. When my nephew Chaim was three-years old, he used to have nose bleeds quite often – so often, that he had a procedure done in the doctor’s office to stop the constant nosebleeds. It worked, but he walked around the house saying, “Something hurts and I don’t know! Something hurts and I don’t know!” My brother Sol said at that moment, “Chaim your nose hurts! – Oh yes, my nose hurts!” Now that he was aware of what was bothering him, he felt so much better.
It’s often the same thing in relationships. A partner may not be aware of something he/she said or did that hurt the other partner. As a result, the other partner may start to feel distant, and the “offending” partner does not know why. When that person asks the question, “Honey is there something wrong?” he/she may respond with… “Oh, not really; I just had a hard day.”
Having this dialogue is okay if it’s forgotten, and it is something that hardly ever happens. But if this happens too often, the emotional tension will not be forgotten. In fact it will turn to negative energy, a process we term “Tanking.” Every person has his/her own “Emotional Storage Tank,” where it stores positive or negative energy. If you push down and suppress all negative energy in to your own emotional storage tank, the pressure it contains will start to move the tension into your partner. This is because energy is never lost; it just changes form.
The fact remains that the emotions you suppress, your partner will eventually feel and express. Let me explain. When a couple gets married, Hashem sets up a two-part cable system. In this process the cable that Hashem connects to the married couple splits, so that the couples are not only connected to each other but also to their emotional storage tanks. The two of them now have the ability to become one and feel what the other one feels. This way the relationship can move to a higher level for healing and growth.
Please be aware that what we want in marriage is to have this positive energy moving within us. If each of our partner’s tank overflows with positive energy, this energy will flow through your connecting emotional cable into your partner’s tank and produce powerful LSP; Love Safety and Passion. Then again, if one partner (or both) is filled up with suppressed negative energy it will flow through the cable into the other partner. As a result both partners will start to feel irritable and tired; something will be wrong, but they won’t know why. This is because holding onto negative energy is very draining. If a couple continues to “tank” each other with negative energy, four things may occur: Distance, Anger, Rage and – in time, Depression. Your emotional storage tank needs positive energy to function.
The walls of the cable then become too thick with pain and unresolved issues of the past. The negative energy being pumped into your partner takes up all the space so that no positive energy can pass through the cable, making you feel tired and depressed. The negative energy will cause the tanks to become unbalanced and shut down, which will prevent us from feeling. This is because anger and passion do not mix, and if you stop feeling, you stop loving. Every marriage has some sort of healing that takes place and as long as you have more positive energy than negative passing through those cables, these tanks can still operate.
I find that when couples become aware of what is really hurting them, and learn to use the tools that Hashem has given them to keep the cable free-flowing with positive energy, their marriage moves to a level of Shalom Bayit that they never knew was possible.
Moishe Herskowitz MS., LCSW, developed the T.E.A.M. (Torah Education & Awareness for a better Marriage) approach, based on 20 successful years of counseling couples – helping them to communicate effectively and fully appreciate each other. As a licensed clinical social worker and renowned family therapist, he developed this breakthrough seminar to guide new couples through easy-to-accomplish steps towards a happy, healthy marriage. Moishe Herskowitz holds a certificate from the Brooklyn Institute for Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis in couples and marriage therapy. He is an active member of the New York Counseling Association for marriage and family counseling. T.E.A.M. is endorsed by many prominent Rabbanim, including Rav Pam zt”l, Rav Belsky, Rav Dovid Goldwasser, Rav Herbst, Rav Lehrfield, Rabbi Pikus,and Rav Ralbag.
About the Author: Moishe Herskowitz, MS., LCSW, developed the T.E.A.M. (Torah Education & Awareness for a better Marriage). As a licensed clinical social worker and renowned family therapist, he guides new couples through easy-to-accomplish steps towards a happy, healthy marriage. He can be reached at CPCMoishe@aol.com or 718-435-7388.
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For many, contemplating our exile from our homeland is more of an intellectual endeavor than an emotional one.
I encourage all singles and their parents to urge their shadchanim to participate in ShadchanZone.
People definitely had stress one hundred and fifty years ago, but it was a different kind of stress.
It is inspirational to see the average Israeli acting with aplomb and going about daily routines no matter what is happening.
Participants wore blue and white, waved Israeli flags, and carried pro-Israel posters.
To support the Victor Center for Prevention of Jewish Genetic Diseases at Miami Children’s, please call 305-666-2889 or visit www.mchf.org/donate and select the “Victor Center” fund.
The course will be taught once a month for seven consecutive months and is designed for women at all levels of Jewish knowledge.
Like many of his contemporaries, he went through some hard years, but eventually he earned the rewards of his perseverance and integrity.
The president’s message was one of living peacefully in a Jewish and democratic state, Jews of all stripes unified as brothers, with Arabs or citizens of other religions.
What Hashem desires most is that we learn to connect with each other as children in the same family.
You are my brothers and sisters. Your pain is my pain.
In fact Hashem sets up couples that have opposite traits as an opportunity for each to help, learn, and heal the other.
Many times when a couple is arguing they may, unconsciously, trigger childhood anger. So much so, that if we would stop and listen to what they are arguing about, it would sounds like two eight year olds fighting in the back yard.
In my last article I had mentioned that often one of the symptoms of autophobia, a fear of abandonment, is that as adults people suffering with this condition may become extremely sensitive to rejection.
In part one (Family Issues 04-29-2011) we mentioned that often a symptom of the anxiety disorder, the fear of abandonment, is a strong need to be in control. That is because the person suffering from the disorder has lost someone in their past – due to separation, divorce or death – and may unconsciously blame themselves for the desertion.
The fear of abandonment, also known as autophobia, is an anxiety disorder characterized by an acute fear of being alone. Often, one of the symptoms of this particular anxiety is a strong need to be in control. This is because one has previously lost someone close through separation, divorce or death and may unconsciously blames his or herself for the event. When this happens, any type of separation may traumatize the person, even the marriage of his or her own child can be viewed as a life-threatening event.
The following was a letter sent as a response to the article, “Children of Shame” (02-04-2011). The article addressed the fact that children learn at a very young age to disconnect their feelings as a mechanism to end their feelings of shame. As these children become adults, they find it difficult to reconnect those out of fear that once again they will feel the pain of shame.
Children who grew up feeling shameful for the most part will have also grown up without someone to talk to about how it made them feel.
Shame is one of the most destructive feelings there is. It is a feeling that something is wrong within us and has a negative affect on a child’s self-development.
Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/family/marriage-relationships/something-hurts-and-i-dont-know/2006/08/30/
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