This paper considers the dangerous and heated issues that often underlie outwardly happy relationships. Just as the earth can be unpredictable and smouldering under its calm surface, many relationships between couples have deep fissures that bubble up with unexpected force, often in the consulting room. I present a case study of one such couple and consider the parts played by unrealistic expectation, idealisation, denigration, previous hurts and fractures, and cultural background. I also illustrate the paper with snippets from the American TV series Mad Men, looking particularly at Don and Betty Draper’s marriage. Don has a false identity, both literally and metaphorically, and the facts of his earlier life, including his name, are completely unknown to his wife. My premise is that when most couples become attached, it can be an attachment based on primarily unconscious needs and expectations of each other, especially when they have explored and divulged very little. Our role as psychotherapists is to help each member of a couple begin to share their inner lives while maintaining hope that their partner will not use the information shared as a weapon against them.
E aro ana tēnei tuhinga ki ngā kaupapa morearea, hahana hūnaia ai e te whakaatanga manahau i rō noho tahitanga a te tokorua. Pērā i te matawhatiwhati o Papatuanuku, he maha ngā whakararu noho puku nohonga ā tokorua pahū ake ai i roto i te rūma akoako. E horaina atu ana he mātai takitahi o tētahi tokorua rite ki tēnei ka whakaaro i ngā wāhanga whai wāhi atu ki ngā autāia rerekē, monoa, pēhitanga, mamae inamata me te ahurea. Ka whakaatahia hoki i roto i te tuhinga ētahi maramara kōrero o te Pouaka Whakaata Amerikana Mad Men, aronui atu ki te noho moehanga o Don rāua ko Betty Draper. Ā tuhi, ā kupu whakarite he teka te tuakiri o Don, ā kore kore ana i mōhiotia ngā meka o tōna whakatipuranga, me tōna ingoa e tōna hoa wahine. E kī ana au, inā piritahi he tokorua, he whakapiringa pupū ake ai tēnei mai i ngā wawata me ngā hiahia rehu tētahi ki tētahi, inarā kāre nei e taki mōhio pai ki a rāua anō, ā, taki noho puku ai. Ko tā tātou, tātou ngā kaiwhakaora hinengaro mahi, he āwhina i ngā tokorua nei ki te taki whakaatu i ō rāua kare ā roto ki a rāua anō me te mau whakaaro kāre te hoa rangatira e whakamahi i ēnei kōrero hai werohanga atu.
Copyright (c) 2015 Ata: Journal of Psychotherapy Aotearoa New Zealand
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