Thursday Thought — Two Underlying Assumptions of Couples Therapy
Couples therapy is based on two underlying assumptions. The first is that there is equality between the partners. The second is that each partner contributes to creating the problems in the relationship. These assumptions simply are not true in an abusive relationship. His abuse is not related to her actions. It doesn’t matter what she does; he’ll always find a way that she’s doing it wrong. But he keeps telling her (and he probably even believes, at some level) that his behavior is her fault, that if she only were taller, shorter, sexier, not such a slut, a more attentive mother or a less protective mother, he would treat he well. And by the time the two of them get to a therapist’s office [or pastor’s office*], she probably believes it’s her fault, too. So, when the therapist [or pastor*] asks her to examine what she is doing to contribute to their problems, she’ll do it. She’ll examine it, by golly, until she’s blue in the face. Meanwhile, her husband has just gotten support for what he’s been saying all along — she is causing this.
(from “Family and Friends’ Guide to Domestic Violence: How to Listen, Talk and Take Action When Someone You Care About is Being Abused” [*Affiliate link], by Elaine Weiss, p94)
*emphasis on pastors – mine
*Amazon affiliate link — ACFJ gets a small percentage if you purchase via this link