Saturday, November 06, 2004

Don’t allow your problems to fester

Don’t allow your problems to fester

By Bob Garon
TODAY Newspaper
Friday, November 5, 2004 10:35 PM

Counseling troubled people can be very frustrating. It is truly a lot of hard work. Those who come asking for help are usually in deep trouble. The problem has more often than not been festering for quite a while. People rarely come for counseling when the problem first surfaces and is more easily addressed. Ordinarily, they will see the counselor only as a last resort after having waited too long and tried all other options.

The counselor is now faced with a severe situation that is spinning out of control. Most often, the problem is about interpersonal relationships. The lines of communication between the spouses or lovers are perhaps severely damaged. The bridge between them is in a sad state of disrepair. Unresolved conflict has taken its toll. The hurt is deep and extensive. And a cold chill has settled over the relationship.

Maybe the couple is already at war and the sniping goes on even in the presence of the counselor.

Sometimes both parties come in together. More often than not, one has to drag the other in against his will. And many times, the counselor has to make do with only one party as the other refuses to cooperate.

When a love relationship is on the rocks, what is usually happening is that one party wants out while the other is trying to block the exit. Almost always it is the blocker who seeks help in “saving” the relationship that the other party isn’t nearly as interested in rescuing.

A very major problem is the death of love. When love dies or is almost completely drained from the heart of one spouse or lover, there is, most often, little desire to reenergize the relationship. The one who owns the dying love is thinking of ways to, at best, coexist in the relationship, or, at worst, he is searching for ways of ending it.

This is why he shows little enthusiasm for any real effort that it would take to reverse the situation. He might prefer to just let death set in and get it over with.

For these and any number of other reasons, the best advice of the counselor often falls on deaf ears. The one who needs it most is hearing, but isn’t truly listening. Many times, he sits through the process for formality’s sake or to assuage his conscience and in order to tell everyone when it’s over that he gave it his best shot.

Motivating people to change their thinking or behavior is difficult even under the best of circumstances. Doing so when one party wants no part of it is virtually impossible.

Why am I telling you all this? For one simple reason. Move quickly when the problem surfaces. Seek help as a first option rather than waiting for last minute. Be proactive rather than reactive. Your chances of success will be much greater.


Blogger BULLSEYE said...

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November 5, 2004 at 4:08 PM  
Blogger BULLSEYE said...


November 5, 2004 at 4:13 PM  

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