Relationships are one of the most stressful, complex, and amazing situations that humans crave and strive to be a part of every day. How do you know which relationships are the best for you? How do you know a potential partner is willing to commit to you and be able to be the second half of your team? Couples counseling teaches individuals to identify their availability for a healthy relationship, and also to identify the availability of others.
There are three key traits that couples counselors focus on when giving advice for seeking a potential partner. These traits are identified as availabilities. It is these availabilities that will allow you to see which potential relationship you should be channeling your mental and physical capacities into.
The first availability is emotional availability. Emotional availability refers to you or your partner being able to validate and actively listen to you. Showing this demonstrates the partners wanting to be a part of your world and wanting to know what you are experiencing. The potential mate who is still referencing past lovers or communicating with exes will not have the emotional availability you might need to truly connect on this level. For an authentic partnership to develop, there has to be an emotional space for vulnerability, trust, and true empathy to grow without fear.
The second availability is physical availability. Physical availability demonstrates that the potential partner has the ability to spend time with you. They are able to devote time to connect with you in person, in public, and in proximity. They have space in their life for a relationship to develop in this way. It is not only a desire to spend time with you but an ability. Very often, people attempt dating when they do not have the time to give to others, or they are far in distance from a potential mate. If a partner is consistently unable to give you their time, making you feel second to other things, ignoring you, or limiting your interactions than the relationship is not ideal.
The third availability is sexual availability. Sexual availability refers to the romantic and sexual presence of the relationship. This is demonstrated through thoughtful and/or meaning shows of affection. Also, sexual availability refers to the partner being able to only be monogamous with you and chooses to focus their sexual energy on you. If this is not the case then the relationship will not be able to grow, develop, and be healthy for both partners. Intimacy is a key element in healthy relationships and requires trust, openness, and commitment to each other.
These availabilities can differ between couples and partners and are not meant to be “strict guidelines.” They can simply provide a good guideline to help you determine whether someone is in the right place for a healthy relationship to develop. We all deserve to be in happy and healthy relationships! These helpful hints can get you there.
Be proud of yourself and for more information on couples counseling, contact the author of this article or call Orlando Thrive Therapy today to speak to a couples counselor.
For more information on couple and individual counseling please reach out to schedule an appointment today!
Heather Oller is a licensed Orlando therapist at Orlando Thrive Therapy, Coaching & Counseling who specializes in counseling Orlando couples, individuals, and families who are seeking changes in their lives. She has been a mental health professional for over 17 years and is a practicing Orlando counselor that specializes in conflict resolution for couples. You can contact her for an appointment or call 407-592-8997 for more information.