Although some states may have legalized same-sex marriage, heterosexual norms and traditions still govern society at large. Therefore, navigating through life as a same-sex couple can be challenging.
Many same-sex couples struggle significantly more than their heterosexual counterparts because there are insufficient support systems around them. Institutions like family, law, and religion provide more comprehensive support to heterosexual couples than same-sex couples.
Issues in Same-Sex Couplings
Numerous issues arise in same-sex marriages that can cause relationship conflicts.
Traditional relationships function on the principle that men and women are instrumental. On the other hand, in same-sex couplings, social exchange is a prominent factor for mutual satisfaction, meaning partners do things for each other to showcase affection and support. However, there are some truths in heterosexual gender-related assumptions that can apply to a same-sex couple. Psychological masculinity refers to a competitive drive, independence and lack of emotionality within a relationship. If a member of a same-sex relationship adopts a stereotypical masculine demeanor, it can impact the relationship.
Initial Expectations and Disappointments
Individuals in same-sex relationships have often spent a long time in the closet, feeling unloved and lonely for who they are. These feelings coupled with gender role conditioning and biological sex similarity often result in same-sex couples having high levels of rapport during a relationship’s initial stages. However, once the initial passion wears off, disappointments occur due to the initial expectations.
Individuals grow through several stages after first experiencing attraction for a same-sex member. Couples in same-sex marriages may be facing issues due to stage discrepancies. One partner may have grown more accustomed to their identity than the other, causing conflicts in the relationship. Couples therapy can help same-sex partners address these problems and prevent them from tearing their marriage apart.
How Same-Sex Couples Counseling Can Help You Avoid Divorce
Same-sex couples counseling can play a pivotal role in helping you avoid divorce. Many people are reluctant to seek counseling because they don’t feel comfortable. However, visiting a licensed therapist can help ensure your relationship is healthy and prosperous.
A competent marriage and family therapist will side not with you or your partner but with your relationship. They focus on helping the partners come together on the same page. Your counselor will help you and your spouse communicate about your relationship difficulties and identify underlying problems. Then, the therapist will try to assist you in overcoming these problems so that you can have a healthier relationship.
Same-Sex Couples Therapy in Palo Alto
If you and your partner are looking for a marriage and family therapist in Palo Alto, we’re happy to assist you. We provide counseling to same-sex and heterosexual couples. Couples seeking relationship counseling meet with Azizeh Rezaiyan, an English and Farsi-speaking therapist with over twenty years of counseling experience.
Contact us today to set an appointment.