Wendy Warner is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in private practice at Trinity Family Counseling Center. In addition to working with couples, children, and individuals, Wendy also enjoys teaching the premarital classes for all couples planning to marry at Immanuel Lutheran Church, Macomb.
I am a counselor. I help people resolve conflicts daily. But no matter how experienced you are on this topic, it can be very challenging to handle it well at times.
I recently had a tough conversation with someone I care about. The flood of emotions I felt during and after our discussion went something like this: I felt wrongly accused and hurt that someone I thought was safe was turning against me; I felt misunderstood and unfairly judged when I tried to explain my perspective.
I alternated between wanting to cry and feeling really mad. In hindsight, I recognized that I had violated the “Rules for Fighting Fair” that I have shared with my clients hundreds of times. It all felt very muddy and confusing. Why couldn’t I be understood? Why was it so hard to stay calm when I know that it is much more helpful to do so? I realized that the conversation went on longer than was productive. I struggled to validate the other person’s point of view as I did not feel validated myself. We got stuck.
I thought about how a counselor would be helpful in this situation. An emotionally uninvolved and objective counselor is able to reflect more clearly on a situation than someone who is upset and hurting. Do you find yourself feeling “stuck” regularly in a certain relationship? If so, a counselor can help sort it out from an unbiased perspective and bring clarity and relief from the frustration and hurt.