How can I save my marriage from divorce in nyc?

Is a Ghost from the Past Haunting Your Marriage or Love Relationship?

Ghosts from the past can be unwelcome intruders in your marriage or love relationship

Ghosts from the past can be unwelcome intruders in your marriage or love relationship

Are you or your partner or spouse experiencing symptoms in your marriage or love relationship that could be related to a history of trauma? A common dialogue between a couple where one partner has a history of trauma might go like this:

Chris: Don't you dare come up from behind me and grab me like that again! I can't stand that, and you did it anyway.

Pat: What? Are you serious? I just came up and gave you a love squeeze. Why are you freaking out so much? You're impossible. I don't want to be with someone who is so cold and frigid. Ice queen... that is who you are.

Trauma is like a ghost from the past, an unwelcome intruder that many times can be strongly affecting a relationship without either partner seeing it. With a keen awareness, you'll notice these ghots come up through specific symptoms that may include a partner or spouse re-living the past trauma without knowing the partner is going through a trance into the past, numbing and detaching after being exposed to the thing that reminds him or her of the trauma, avoiding situations that are somehow linked to the trauma (a common source of sexual problems in a marriage or love relationship), being hypervigilant around the cue of the trauma, and experiencing irritability when something is connecting with the trauma.

When a trauma survivor is able to turn to his or her partner or spouse and ask to be held and comforted during a flashback, rather that to detach or hurt himself or herself, a new trust and sense of hope can emerge for the survivor.

Traumas involving key caregivers are "violations of human connection" (Herman, 1992). More than anyone else, your partner or spouse has the ability to help you heal from past relationship traumas. A partner or spouse can have the most effective healing power over past traumas for the person who has experienced past relationship betrayals and abuse. Partners or spouses can become healers.

If you are in a safe and secure marriage or love relationship, your immune system is more likely to be functioning well, and your ability to cope during stressful life events is significantly increased. In a distressed marriage or love relationship, both partners in the couple likely experience more depression and anxiety symptoms. The sense of community usually decreases in a distressed relationship, so your body needs the help of your partner or spouse even more.

In a secure connection, you are able to face your fears and maintain a strength that helps you cope, regardless of the stress. If you feel isolated and alienated from the larger world, you are much more vulnerable to outside dangers.

When you or your partner or spouse have been subjected to physical, emotional, or sexual abuse, your health may be impacted in each of those areas. Re-experiencing physical sensations can be effectively treated through exposure therapy, known as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). Relationship symptoms do not respond in the same way to CBT, but are much more likely to respond to relationship therapy when a partner or spouse can serve as a source of comfort and safety. It is a partner or spouse that lies next to the survivor of trauma in the middle of the night, a time when anxiety is often peaking, as memories are being processed in the mind. If a partner or spouse doesn't know how to respond in key moments when threat is perceived, he or she may become part of the problem instead of offering key elements of healing.

At the Loving at Your Best Plan, the therapist works to address the symptoms of the trauma, and much more. A focus is to help create a safe and secure emotional bond between the couple in the marriage or love relationship, a connection that promotes safety and calms danger and threat. A history of trauma intensifies the need for a safe connection, and trust is the basis for a secure relationship.

Relationships where one or both partners have trauma in their histories are more likely to have intense negative patterns of interacting with each other, and without an effective intervention, these patterns can kill the relationship. Therapists at the Loving at Your Best Plan integrate top-rated interventions for couples with difficult and challenging histories, especially trauma. These therapies include schema therapy, emotionally focused therapy, Interpersonal Neurobiology, and Gottman Method Couples Therapy.

Do you or the person that you love have a history that includes trauma on an emotional, physical, or sexual level? If so, have you found ways to effectively navigate the symptoms in your marriage or love relationship in NYC? Share your thoughts.

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Source: Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy with Trauma Survivors: Strengthening Attachment Bonds by Sue Johnson, PhD.


The Loving at Your Best Plan: It's How You Love That Counts

The Loving at Your Best Plan: It's How You Love That Counts

Effective Conflict is the Booby Prize in a Marriage or Love Relationship


How do you fight in your marriage or love relationship?

Fighting better is only the booby prize, from my experience with couples. As good as it feels to be able to engage in conflict effectively, it's not the grand prize for a marriage or love relationship.


Join me for the next Marriage and Couples in NYC Webinar: Thursday November 7th @ 8:30 p.m. "Conflict is the Booby Prize in a Marriage or Love Relationship"

I'll cover details about the grand prize for all couples: how each spouse or partner responds to each other, especially in times of need.

The webinar is complimentary, but you must register to receive the link to join in on Thursday. We never share your information with third parties, so be assured your privacy is a top priority. 

You can join via smartphone, tablet, laptop, computer (for the ability to join the chat section and include comments or questions that you have anonymously), or via phone. 

Marriage and Couples Counseling and Therapy in NYC Webinar: Thursday November 7th @ 8:30 p.m. 

Register now by entering your information below: 



eTips is our Marriage and Love Relationship Newsletter from the Loving at Your Best Plan. Your personal information is never given to third parties, and you may easily unsubscribe at any time.
What comments or questions do you have that you'd like addressed during the webinar? Feel free to also include them in the "chat" section during the webinar if more come to mind.

Travis Atkinson, LCSW

Travis Atkinson, LCSW

About Travis

A recent, independently verified client review about Travis and his work:


"It is not possible to simply explain what Travis does...but, he is wise, kind, empathic, and inspired. He is a therapist like none other." 

Travis Atkinson, LCSW, is an expert in the field of marriage and couples counseling and therapy, not just a therapist with a few weekend trainings about couples therapy. He is a pioneer in schema couples therapy, working with the creator of schema therapy, Jeffrey E. Young, PhD, since 1994. Travis also trained in the top-rated couples therapy approaches available throughout the world. 

Travis has completed advanced trainings and has certificates in the following specialties:

*Advanced Certified Schema Therapist, Supervisor & Trainer

*Certified Emotionally Focused Therapist & Supervisor

*Certified Gottman Method Couples Therapist

*Certified Group Psychotherapist

*Advanced Practitioner of Mindsight

You can be assured Travis has the expertise to deal with your areas of challenge in your marriage or love relationship in NYC.


Take Our Couples Quiz Now


How is your marriage or love relationship doing? Take our short 10 question quiz to get a sense of the strength of your bond now. It's complimentary, and there's not obligation.

  1. Simply click on the link, and you'll be re-directed to our couples quiz.
  2. Answer each question (all 10 questions must be answered for the quiz to be valid). 
  3. Once you have finished, you'll receive your total score. 
  4. Your score will be matched to a level that will help you know if you need more help, or if you're doing great in your marriage or love relationship. 

Getting an accurate sense of your relationship or marriage satisfaction can be key in helping address potential problems before they explode. If they already have exploded, you can get a sense of the severity and what to get your relationship back. 





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How Can I Save My Marriage or Relationship?


Perhaps you've come to the point where you're asking yourself how you can save your marriage from divorce or relationship from separation. One of the most important things you can do to start is identify what it means to be close to your partner or spouse.

How we connect with others has been studied for more than 50 years, and knowing what your patterns of connection are can help you get closer with your spouse or partner, and even help save your marriage or relationship. The most important parts of connection with your partner or spouse involve three key parts:

  1. being close in proximity to your partner or spouse
  2. trying to avoid separations
  3. being able to turn to your partner or spouse when you need him or her, especially in times of threat or danger

Four core patterns of connection help us understand where you may get stuck in your marriage or relationship, and how you need your connection to be to feel safe and secure:

  1. First, an anxious-preoccupied way of connection leads a partner or spouse to be fearful, angry, and unsettled when connecting and dealing with emotions. This may be expressed through anger or aggressive actions that can turn a partner or spouse away.
  2. Second, an avoidant way of connection leads to distant, apathetic responses experienced by the other partner as backing away or dismissing his or her experience.
  3. Third, a disorganized way of connecting occurs when you or your partner or spouse have a history of unresolved loss and/or trauma that involves being frightened, experiencing a lot of unpredictability, and having a relationship with a caregiver or romantic partner who is unavailable. Even worse, the caregiver becomes a source of danger. The person we rely on for safety becomes a threat, and we develop a pattern of connection that leads to disorganization.
  4. On the opposite end, if you feel secure in your relationship, the well-being of both you and your partner or spouse is an ongoing priority. You seek closeness and proximity without anger or urges to withdraw.  When your partner or spouse wants to be close to you, you don't get angry or want to run, but instead welcome the closeness and respond to him or her warmly.

Share Your Experience: How Can You Save Your Marriage or Relationship?

What have you tried so far that has helped improve or even save your marriage or relationship? Where do you get stuck together with your partner or spouse that stops you from feeling safe and secure in your connection? Have you identified what your pattern of connecting with your partner or spouse is? Do you connect through anxious-preoccupied patterns, avoidant patterns, disorganized patterns, or secure patterns? What about your partner or spouse: is he or she connecting through anxious-preoccupied, avoidant, disorganized, or secure patterns? Do you relate to the key tenants of safe and secure relationships: seeking proximity, minimizing separations, and being able to count on your partner or spouse when you need him or her most? Share your experiences in the comment section below.

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