Are 'parts' real? A comment on 'parts work' and our imagination.

It is common and understandable to have reactions to "parts work".  It is becoming a common way of working with trauma and family dysfunction that has been made popular by Internal Family Systems (IFS). I use it a lot in my work with people.  Common reactions are - I don't have parts, I am just me, or that parts are not real; we imagine them.  There may be other reactions. One that comes up for me (even though I work in this way) is that I don't like to go along with the latest fad and that nothing is new. 

Have you been told it is important to express your needs? Find out why this is bad advice.

I am going to say something somewhat controversial. We have very few needs in our relationships.  I might go as far as saying that we don’t need anything from our partner.   We need air to breathe and food to eat. This is the level of need. It is associated with our survival. Language is powerful. This is why when we use the word need to express what we want in relationships it has the energy of ‘must-have urgency’ behind it.  It is a demand. 

The shame cycle explained.

Even the mention of shame brings up a desire to avoid even talking about it.  It is the worst feeling and experience. It can be experienced as a constant dull ache lurking to erupt if we give it any attention, to a sudden flash of heat and intense feeling of needing to disappear.  Shame is a relational experience. In other words, we are shamed by others and we develop internal shaming to prevent further experiences of shame, including shaming others.

Did You Know that Relational Repair is One Way?

February 1st, 2024

This is often hard to understand for a lot of the people I work with, so in this post I am going to go through what we mean about repair in relationships.  Let’s start by acknowledging the things we need to repair in a relationship.  That might seem obvious, but let’s lay the foundation for this.  It starts with a communication or action by your partner that leaves you hurt, disappointed, let down, frustrated, and so on.  There may be things you have both said or done during a conflict that cause both to want attention to your hurt feelings. 

The Always/Never Trap in Communication

January 14th, 2024

Many of us (myself included) have used the accusation you always__ or you never __  in arguments with loved ones.  This is an all too common response and if used consistently will erode trust and connection in an intimate relationship.  You have likely been given well-meaning advice about not using these words and how they damage communication.  However, how many of you are successful in doing that? 

Disclaimer: CounsellingBC does not represent or endorse the accuracy or reliability of any informational content contained within any of the individual blogs on this website. All counsellors, psychologists and other professionals are asked to ensure that their sources and their information are reliable. Ultimately any questions or concerns about the content contained in their blog can be addressed to them individually via the link to their listing.