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Valentine’s Day: Harmonizing couple and family

The strained relationship between the person we love and our loved ones can take a toll on our life as a couple and turn family gatherings into tricky terrain. The specialists explain how to deactivate the “emotional mines” that can blow up our love harmony.

Valentine's Day: Harmonizing couple and family

The integration of a new couple into the family requires a positive attitude from everyone. Photo provided by TherapyChat Team

The arrival of a new partner initiates a integration process to the closest family circle and of reciprocal adaptationin which all parties must give each other time to get to know each other and reconfigure the roles they previously had, explain the specialists in Psychology.

They explain that many times this adaptation develops without further problems, and a point of balance is reached in which a cordial relationship is maintained between the family and the newly arrived couple based on affection and respect.

However, one psychological study of the online platform TherapyChat (TC) carried out in Finland, concludes that it is quite common for them to arise at this stage disagreements i conflictsespecially with the in-laws, who end up in a relationship that is difficult to manage.

“If your partner doesn’t fit in with your family or the reverse happens, a series of uncomfortable situations can arise to which you may not know how to react,” he explains to EFE CT clinical content team, led by psychologist Isabel Aranda.

What are the causes of the tensions between the couple and the family?

TherapyChat is the meeting point between psychologists looking to offer their services online and individuals or companies interested in enhancing emotional well-being, according to Aranda.

In general, the problems between the couple and the family are caused by one confluence of factors and situations that cause the relationship to become tense, according to TC.

Couple family relationships
Conflicting family relationships can ‘stab’ love. Photo: Cottonbro Studio/Pexels

They point out that the ideological and/or cultural differenceswhich often define different ways of seeing and understanding life, are one of them most common causes of disagreements

“Sometimes, this discrepancy in criteria is so marked, that it is practically impossible to find a point in common that allows a harmonious coexistence”, they emphasize.

“In other cases, jealousy can be the detonation of this open or covert war,” they add.

On the one hand, family members may feel that they no longer hold such an important place in this person’s life and will do everything in their power to undermine their love relationship.

On the other hand, the partner may believe that their loved one is giving too much time to the family, putting it before the romantic relationship, according to TC.

Recommendations to harmonize the relationship between couple and family

The team led by Isabel Aranda offers one series of recommendations intended to manage difficult relationships between family and couple.

Hear all the parts

“If you show a more open and conciliatory attitude and open up to to listen the reasons that lead your partner and/or your family to maintain a difficult relationship, you will be able to better understand what is happening to find a solution as soon as possible”, according to TC.

Accept all perspectives

It is important to “understand that everyone has their reason and it will be validsince they are different ways of seeing reality”, they point out.

Explain that love is not exclusive

“A good way to calm the spirits of your partner or your family consists of explain to them that love that you feel towards one and the other it is not exclusivebut both loves enrich both your life and that of those around you”, according to the TC team.

Be honest and ask to be understood

“Despite the problems that may exist, both your partner and your family love you and want the best for you. So, let them know how you feel about this situation and ask them to help you solve the problems”, they recommend.

It appeals to mutual respect

“Sometimes the positions of each other on certain issues can be irreconcilable, but this should not become an obstacle for your partner and your family to maintain a cordial relationship. In these cases appeal to mutual respectit will help you improve coexistence without hurting anyone”, they say.

Valentine family couple love
A couple can feel “lonely” if they don’t get along with the family. Photo by Leah Kelley/ Pexels

Avoid controversial topics

In every family and/or relationship there is thorny issues or “controversies in which there is a clear disagreement and which should be avoided whenever possible, since bringing them up continuously will only generate arguments”, according to TC psychologists.

Exit the ‘Choice Trap’

Many people who have to deal with a difficult relationship between partner and family end up feeling between the sword and the wall and are often pressured to choose between one or the other “ban” when faced with misleading questions like “Do you love me or your family more?”, or “Is it that your relatives are more important than me?“.

It is necessary to make all parties understand that “it’s not about choosingsince you can love several people at the same time and enjoy spending time with them, without that meaning that you give more value to one or the other”, they point out from TC.

Reject cross-criticism

“When you let your family talk bad about your partner or vice versa, you not only convey the idea that the other party is not that important in your life, but you make the situation worse. To improve the relationship, you need curb criticism and negative comments from one side or the otherand invite whoever makes them to reflect on their critical stance,” according to TherapyChat.

Try to reach a consensus

“A good way to accept the situation and try to improve it is to reach a consensus between your partner and your family”, according to the TC team, who recommend “encouraging both parties to accept each other’s flaws and recognize those other virtues, which they may not have paid attention to.”

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