Couples and Premarital: Parallel Living: What to Do | Couple's Net | Chandrama Anderson | Mountain View Online |

Local Blogs

Couple's Net

By Chandrama Anderson

E-mail Chandrama Anderson

About this blog: About this blog: I am a LMFT specializing in couples counseling and grief and have lived in Silicon Valley since 1969. I'm the president of Connect2 Marriage Counseling. I worked in high-tech at Apple, Stanford University, and in ...  (More)

View all posts from Chandrama Anderson

Couples and Premarital: Parallel Living: What to Do

Uploaded: Sep 17, 2021
I received an email thanking me for writing Signs and Symptoms of Parallel Living. She recognized it in her marriage, and asked me what to do.

Here are the steps:
1. Write down 10 feelings you have about it. Here are a few that you might be feeling:
a. Lonely
b. Sad
c. Confused
d. Angry (always look for the feelings beneath anger; e.g., the three listed above)
2. Write down 10 things you used to enjoy doing together but you don’t do anymore.
3. Write down 10 ways in which you might have been steering your ship away from your partner’s. (I know, you want to write down the 10 ways in which your partner has been steering away from you. I want you to look at your part in this. For example, did you put all your energy and focus into your kids? Did you put all your energy and focus into your career?)
4. Write down 10 ways to turn around your own behavior.
5. Write down 10 things that make you feel loved.
6. Write down 10 things that makes your partner feel loved.
7. Knowing both of you, write down 10 ways that you can make a ‘bid for connection’, meaning reaching out to do something that helps you two connect. (Some might not be your favorite things to do, but they’re very important to your partner.)

Each partner is 100% responsible for getting here. Once you’ve done enough introspection to understand your part, then approach your partner.

Use this format to speak:
I’ve been thinking a lot about us living in parallel over time. I’ve been thinking about my part in this, and how we got here. I feel, ___________, __________, and __________. (Use your feeling list from above). I wish for us to talk about it, taking turns and listening deeply. I want to hear how you feel, and what you think we can do to make this better. I miss you; I miss us. Let’s pick a time soon to have a conversation. Would you like to walk while we talk, or sit together in (your mutual favorite spot)?

Where did you first meet? What was something that you did in your early days together that you both really enjoyed? That might be the place to go for your conversations.

Yes, you’re going to have to make yourself vulnerable. That can be scary. And, it’s the path that leads to connection, and emotional intimacy.

I believe in you. You can do this.

Please don’t be Velcro or Teflon. Meaning don’t get snagged to a rough place (takes two parts for Velcro to work), and don’t let things slide off you regarding what your partner has to share.

If you find your conversations going sideways, or don’t feel you’re making progress, consider seeing a good couple therapist together.
Local Journalism.
What is it worth to you?

Comments

There are no comments yet for this post

Follow this blogger.
Sign up to be notified of new posts by this blogger.

Email:

SUBMIT

Post a comment

In order to encourage respectful and thoughtful discussion, commenting on stories is available to those who are registered users. If you are already a registered user and the commenting form is not below, you need to log in. If you are not registered, you can do so here.

Please make sure your comments are truthful, on-topic and do not disrespect another poster. Don't be snarky or belittling. All postings are subject to our TERMS OF USE, and may be deleted if deemed inappropriate by our staff.

See our announcement about requiring registration for commenting.

Stay informed.

Get the day's top headlines from Mountain View Online sent to your inbox in the Express newsletter.

Home brews to home base: Brewing With Brothas aims to open East Palo Alto taproom
By The Peninsula Foodist | 2 comments | 5,186 views

Jumping on a bandwagon that ends up breaking down
By Diana Diamond | 21 comments | 4,707 views

"A journey is like marriage. The certain way to be wrong . . .
By Chandrama Anderson | 0 comments | 3,539 views

Why COP26 matters and what to look for
By Sherry Listgarten | 4 comments | 2,778 views