Shifting Your Focus

I talk a lot with gay and lesbian couples about their ‘destination’, and every now and then one will point out that the legal destination isn’t the same here in Texas as it is elsewhere, and how incredibly upsetting that fact is for them. 

For some, it’s the one glaring frustration in their otherwise pretty normal life. Maybe they’ve got a great job, where they can be openly gay, and their family supports them and the relationship, and they want more than anything, to be legally married, and that really is a huge piece of their ultimate destination.  But, they would likely admit, they didn’t seek couples counseling to change Texas law, they came wanting their relationship to improve in ways they have some control over. So often, the question I ask a couple who brings up the frustrating legal differences between their relationship and a straight one, is something like this: “When the law does change, and you are able to be legally married in Texas, what do you want your marriage to look like?” And together, we paint a clear and detailed picture full of things that this couple has complete control over, like waking up with a kiss, making coffee and talking about their plans for the day, going on vacation and celebrating the amazing things in their lives as a team.  We talk about this picture together for nearly an hour, and by the time we’re done, the couple has so many little details to focus on & notice, that their frustration over the thing they can’t control seems secondary to going out and changing the things they can. 

Sometimes, life is frustrating in uncontrollable ways, and the best we can do, is our best…on our terms, in our way…and focusing on doing that, controlling what we can and letting the rest go while we do, might bring us closer to our destination than we knew was possible before. 

Who knew being near-sighted could be so helpful?



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