How can Couples Therapy help you in the face of illness?
Sometimes with Couples a different kind of challenge enters the scene. When major illness appears it is almost as if another entity starts sharing the relationship space with you. Adaptations must be made and priorities reconsidered. The difficulties cannot be predicted in advance. At a time like this is can be extremely helpful to include the multi-dimensional benefits of Couples Therapy in your plans.
What can I, as your therapist, help you specifically?
As a therapist I am experienced in counseling and supporting Couples who are facing cancer, diabetes, heart anomalies, kidney disease, chronic fatigue syndrome and fertility issues. I will give you the compassionate advice and emotional support that you need as a Couple to keep a positive attitude and meet the challenge. I will help you stabilize your relationship so that you can bring your personal best to the challenge. I can also help with the inevitable stress and fatigue that results, both for the care giver and for the person with the illness.
There are two different emotional realities can be helped with counseling
Being the person with the illness
Being the partner of the person with the illness
Emotional Phases in the process of Sudden Onset Disease
1 Appearance of symptoms and the uneasiness/confusion that ensues
2 Emotional fluctuations in the face of “what if”
3 Decision to seek medical help
4 Alternating anxiety vs relief before initial doctors appointment
5 Seeing the doctor
6 Getting tests, sometimes multiple tests
7 Waiting for test results
8 Test results and managing emotions
9 Concerns about insurance and treatment costs
10 Scheduling medical procedures
11 Re organizing priorities to handle what else is to come
Phases after this vary.
Care giver stress
This is a specific subset of Couples Therapy but one that I am happy to help with.
Email is the quickest way to reach me
If you or your partner feel that your relationship is being impacted by illness I can help you with that. Please email me with your questions.
Dona Laressa Desmond PhD
Couples Support During Major Illness
Dona Laressa Desmond, PhD, LMFT
Couples Therapy, PreMarital and Marriage Counseling