Holiday Visits With Family

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Sometimes, even couples who have all the kinks worked out between themselves, can find time spent with their extended family challenging.  As the holidays approach, I always like to ask my clients if they’d like to spend some session time on the upcoming holiday visits.

Often couples who come for marriage counseling don’t realize that differences in how to handle extended families can be solved in our work together.  Solutions can range from a simple setting of expectations, so each feels comfort in the predictability they’ve established together, to a more complex problem solving effort about how to deal with a particular individual or family dynamic.  Even if only one partner anticipates a problem, it can be helpful to establish what kind of support they can count on from the other. Very often couples come up with relatively easy things each can do to make extended family time more doable and enjoyable for each other.