Â Â Unless unusually fortunate, our parents couldn’t teach these intimacy skills because their parents didn’t have the skills – they couldn’t teach what they didn’t get from their parents. Â Lacking experience, safety andâ€‹ good support, people usually avoid feeling and saying these things in everyday lifeâ€‹ because the depth of intimacy and vulnerabilityÂ isÂ so unfamiliar and scary. Â [See Brene Brown on Vulnerability, an essential skill for happiness.] Â Â So most people haveâ€‹ little orÂ no experienceâ€‹ really feeling & saying â€‹the heartfelt things that would be said and need to be said for genuine intimacy. Â
Â Â It’s also true that all important goodbyes are connected through their similar feelings – love, sadness, anger and scare [in the Gestalt model: appreciations, resentments and regrets]. Â Past important goodbyesâ€‹, both said and especially unsaid, come naturally consciously and unconsciously to awareness, further complicating and intensifying goodbyes,Â whether in everyday life or in therapy.
Â Â Unfortunately oâ€‹ur culture tends to avoid deeply experiencing and talking aboutÂ importantâ€‹ feelings in relationships.â€‹ Â Practicing actually feeling and putting these very human feelings into words greatly facilitates deeper, more satisfying and sustaining intimacy in all future relationships. Â Goodbyesâ€‹ in therapy are a kind of final therapeutic exercise, an opportunity to put into practice all theÂ therapeutic experiencesÂ which have led toÂ “graduating” fromÂ Group therapy. Â
I welcome your comments, Â Dr Bob