Hedy & Yumi Schleifer are the archetype of the harmonious, deeply loving couple. Here we share their story in our video interview.
Married for many decades and living in Washington D.C., they have created a remarkable approach to help other couples connect in a deep way. They call it “bridging.” We have mentored with them and the results transformed both our relationship and our work with other couples.
With Barbara Carroll, MA & Jonathan Eli Herrick, LCSW
Who: Couples and individuals wanting rich, harmonious relationships What: Learning practical, proven skills and new perspectives Why: To reduce suffering and increase joy in relationship Where: Sausalito, CA When: TBD
The wisdom distilled here emerges out of Jonathan’s wide clinical experience and deep personal reflection. Jan Chozen Bays, M.D., American Zen Teacher, To Heal the Human World
We are always so eager to get our partner to change.
If only they would be kinder, more independent, more responsible, more fun, more sexual, less sexual, more emotional, less emotional, if only they would be different, our life would definitely improve.
I am in the process of writing a new book, “The Fire Of American Spirituality” for which I have interviewed dozens of the most dynamic spiritual leaders on American soil. I now have many hours of audio files.
These recordings are both fascinating and inspirational. As the book becomes ready, I’ll be sharing excerpts from it, as well as some of the audio files.
A relatively healthy couple is brought together by love, joy, humor and common interests. Most couples are aware of this and expect this to be what a relationship is about. Beginning relationships hopefully offer all of these wonderful things.
There are also other things which bring a couple together. At the simplest level, to learn from one and other.
What is the essence of relationship? What, most fundamentally, leads to a relationship succeeding? What makes for fulfillment and satisfaction? What is it that most couples are seeking? Genuine connection. And what does that mean? What does one need to do to create or allow for genuine connection?
More often than most people realize, we bind and limit ourselves in order to preserve our primary relationships. Sometimes we actually choose to remain the same and, in various ways, encourage our partner to remain the same in the mistaken belief that this will protect our relationship. The thinking goes something like this: Even though I am not being emotionally fed or stretched in this relationship, I won’t ever leave, because I would rather be safe here with you than on my own.
The second illusion, and the flipside to wishing our partner were our ideal parent, is the tendency to see and hear our literal parents when we look at and listen to our partner. When our spouse behaves in ways that even remotely resemble a parent’s behavior we can forget who is standing in front of us and react not so much to our mate but to our parent and all they ever did to us. The psychological term for this phenomenon is transference.
Don’t confuse a partner’s right to autonomy with what is part of a reasonable relational agreement. If your partner continually arrives later than promised for dinner, it is appropriate to insist he keep his word.
If you can, insist your partner keep his word and he continues to disregard you, create effective consequences; the more creative the consequences, the better.