“Dr. Shane helped us to hear past the hurt.
I was so nervous and embarrassed before coming into your office. Although we hadn’t been married very long, we had become so distant and resentful of each other that things seemed hopeless.
You were easy to talk to, and within a couple of sessions it felt like you had known us forever.
Initially, it was hard to trust your advice that ‘we needed to work on our friendship, and begin to trust that our spouse had a valid point that we both needed to try and hear — whether we agreed or not.’ However, I have come to realize both of us were legitimately hurt, and once I acknowledged his pain instead of denying it, he became able to hear and acknowledge mine.
While it felt refreshing to be heard and acknowledged, it felt more encouraging to recognize that by becoming a better listener I could possibly avoid hurting him that way in the future.
It is nice to know that you are only a phone call away in case we run into another problem. It was an eye-opening experience.”
Much to our surprise, we re-ignited the flame
I hadn’t felt love for my wife in at least 6 years. In fact, it was well beyond not loving her: I couldn’t stand being in the same room with her.
All we ever did was fight.
We had gotten to the point where it no longer mattered if the kids were standing right there. We would just slung mud at each other, denying the damage we were doing to our kids. Then one day while taking my son home he asked “why “don’t you like mommy anymore?,” the next day I decided to come to counseling for the sake of the kids.
I never expected Heather and I to find each other again. We resolved our conflicts, forgave each other and re-ignited the flame and friendship we once felt towards each other.
Thanks a million, AAMC.”
K., Lance & Heather — Bethesda, MD.
“The first 2 years were miserable, and the future seemed BLEAK…” That loving feeling was long gone.
Although I pleaded with Joe to go to counseling, he refused. Time after time again, we would break up and would always get back together only to discover instead of getting better it always got much worse. Despite our love for each other, there was verbal – and, yes, even physical – abuse, and finally an affair.
Hopeless, I left the marriage.
He began counseling without me, and asked if I would come. At first, I refused. However, guilt overcame me (I am Catholic after all), and I wanted to be able to tell others that I had tried. Once I began to see some sincere changes in Joe, I decided to give it one last try.
For the last two years, it has been nice to be in love again — and, even more so, with Joe. We still have our challenges, but are happily married. I’ve rediscovered our connection, and we are buds again. And we are pregnant. I am excited (and relieved) to know our daughter will be born into a happy home.
J & S, Matthews — Burtonsville, MD
Despite being separated a few times, we learned how to resolve our differences in a win/win way, and that has made our marriage stronger and happier.
We had been living separately for over a year and a half. Both of us had accepted divorce as the next step, but reluctantly agreed to give it one last chance before we filed.
Our counseling breakthroughs at AAMC were simple, yet sometimes unimaginably meaningful. Over time, unexpressed resentments and hurts surfaced that we hadn’t been expressed in years. We were holding on to so much pain that it was no wonder we would have big fights over little things. To avoid conflict we had come to the point that we preferred to be in separate rooms.
I thought we were simply incompatible.
Our counselor was very candid and direct with us. We fought, shut down, laughed, cried together and had several set backs. Yet, through it all, we developed a better understanding of each other. Ultimately, we learned how to resolve our differences by creating ‘win/win vs. win/lose or lose/lose scenarios.’
Even though we still have our share of disagreements and fights, we remain very happily married to this day.”
Q and B — Virginia