Chrysalis Couples Counselling Essay

Compare and Contrast Two Theories/Models of Relationships and Show How They Might Be Utilised By a Therapist Who Is Engaged In Couples Counselling

Maxine Reece
Tutor: Maggie Rodgers
October 2015
Module 6
Word Count 2616
  “To be psychologically healthy-in fact, to fully be human-is to be in relationship with others” (Erskine, Maursund and Trautmann 1999:ix). It is a basic, subconscious, biological need. “Who and what we achieve occurs in an extensive matrix of relationships” (Erskine et al. 2011:1). Our psychological health will grow and change depending on how our emotional attachments reciprocate, nurture, respect, value and sensitively support us in expressing our effort as unique individuals; it requires the other person to be “attuned to our relational needs” .This” contactful presence” (n Erskine, Maurund and Trautmann 1999:123) is at its most intense within the partnership of a couple; the significant other chosen to live out one’s life with. “This moment of oneness is one of the most exhilarating, most exciting experiences in life” (Fromm 1995:3).
  According to Erskine et al., the human desire for ‘secure attachment’ within their intimate relationship requires eight physical and emotional ‘relational needs’ to be met. These are security, validation, affirmation and significance within the relationship, acceptance by a stable, dependable and protective other, confirmation of a personal experience, self-definition, having an impact on the other, having the other initiate, and finally, to express love. (Erskine, Maurund and Trautmann 1999:124).
  What happens when these relational needs are not met? When we become one of a couple, we do so with promises and expectations whether we verbalise them or not. Things can, and do, change. Communications break down. Life goals alter. “Herein is the cause of conflict, fear, anxiety and insecurity. Guilt and jealousy enter the game in an attempt to reach a situation of equity” (Chrysalis 2015:Module 6 )....