In this article I will explore two strands of the “straight safety net”—heteronormative assumptions and heterosexual privilege—and how these create often unacknowledged stress for queer couples. Following are three different scenarios from my sessions with queer couples that exemplify some of these common stressors.
Learn to negotiate so you can effectively handle conflict. All healthy relationships need conflict to grow however many people are afraid of conflict because they don’t know how to negotiate. Learn how to create “win-win” situations with effective negotiating skills. Good negotiation will also vastly improve your communication skills.
I am often asked how I work with couples. This is probably as varied as the couples that I see, who are queer, alternative and traditional. However, if I had to pick a common area of focus, I would say it is to help couples free themselves from the claws of the negative cycles that they get caught in.