HEALTH

Finding Healing from Attachment Injuries with Winchester Counselling

Monday 30 September 2019, 11:11PM
By Beckie Wright
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Couples who experience attachment injuries require more guidance and care especially from a couple’s counsellor. Winchester Counselling offers effective couple counselling that can help partners deal with their emotions, and the pattern of experiences they have created that may have caused attachment injuries.

According to Andrew Winchester, founder of Winchester Counselling, an attachment injury occurs when one partner violates the expectation that the other will offer comfort and caring in times of danger or distress. It is also characterised by abandonment, or form a betrayal of trust during a critical moment of need. 

Unlike typical relationship hurdles, such as reactive insults, or blow-up fights that happen in secure relationships, attachment injuries are more severe when individuals do not recognise the significance and the impact of the injury to one’s partner. The hurt deepens; it becomes more complex and causes greater distress within the relationship.

When there is an attachment injury, a partner may view their significant other differently. A good example of this is infidelity. Infidelity causes a partner to view the relationship as untrustworthy and unsafe. Andrew Winchester notes, “The injurious incident defines the relationship as insecure and maintains relationship distress because it is continually used as a standard for the dependability of the offending partner.”

Another example of attachment injury occurs when a partner is dealing with a loss, and the significant other who is expected to console them prioritises other things, like work. At that moment, the partner dealing with the loss may view the relationship and the partner differently. That specific incident that triggers an intense emotion may keep recurring, and couples may become stuck in that hurtful experience.

Couples who believe that they are dealing with attachment injuries are encouraged to seek professional help to resolve feelings of anger and hurt from betrayal or abandonment that they cannot resolve. Winchester Counselling uses an evidenced-based approach in dealing with attachment injuries. The Attachment Injury Resolution Model (AIRM) is part of the emotionally focused therapy for couples (EFT) used to help couples navigate the process of healing after an attachment injury. The outcomes of these counselling solutions (AIRM, EFT) for general relationship distress have been successfully tested.

To learn more, visit the Winchester Counselling website at https://winchestercounselling.co.nz