Case Study: Brink of Divorce – A Wake-Up Call

Case Study: Brink of Divorce – A Wake-Up Call

Apr 05, 2021

Meet Nick (not his real name/photo); he is in his late 40’s, married with 2 young children. He had been with his wife for 20 years. In the past 3 years, Nick felt overworked from starting his own business.

He had been working 7 days a week.

He came to see me after his wife had told him that she wanted a separation.

He had been blind to a whole raft of things, which caused a rift in his marriage.

It transpired that Nick’s wife had been under much stress with the responsibilities of running the household and feeling unsupported. She struggled with a chronic illness and desperately needed Nick’s help with the children.

I tried to understand the issues from Nick’s point of view. He was devastated that his wife was considering to leave, he did not see that coming.

Nick described that his job was physically demanding. He said after a long day he would be so tired and just wanted peace and quiet when he got home.

However his family needed his contribution and support; practically and emotionally, but he could not reconcile his roles, as a business owner, husband, and a father.

We turned the problem he discussed to the desired solution, a goal. He also decided to use the sessions to learn more about himself.

In the end, he had to be okay whether his wife left or stayed.
Through the use of transformative questions, and reflections he got to understand the issues from his wife’s perspective.

We looked closely at their communication with each other, expression of affection, respect for each other, understanding, time needed to spend with the children, creating time to help with home duties and more.

He also grasped that he did not know how well to deal with his negative emotions. Each time his wife tried to discuss issues he reacted with anger.

He also had no patience towards the children. From reflecting, he said he never paid attention to how his reactions affected others.

His new perspective on the issues motivated him to see everything in a new light including his unhelpful responses. He realised that these were behaviours he could alter on his part.

Our work involved helping him to improve his communication skills and for him to learn to use his emotions intelligently to problem solve. He became attuned to his own, wife, and children’s feelings and stayed present and be able to work out what needed doing at the time.

Overall, it was about him learning to let go of the old ways of doing things and being willing to adopt new ways that were most helpful in his situation.

We concluded our work together after 6 sessions. Nick was much happier, and he told me that things had improved a great deal with his wife and children.

Nick was feeling like a different person. He stated that he took it upon himself to give tips to other males, whom he came in contact through his work. He said he realised that often the conversations were negative, and he wanted to bring awareness to this with those he shared.