Interracial Couples have become a norm in the Bay Area. Research has shown the Bay Area to be one of the most liberal places for interracial relationships to occur. Whether you are a Black and White couple of 25 years who work in the tech industry, a Mexican and Filipino couple who are dating and value social justice, perhaps an Israeli and Chinese couple who are recently married with two small kids, or another unique configuration, it’s all happening here in the Bay Area. People from all over the world migrate here to enjoy a better life. If there ever where a better time and place to have an interracial relationship in America, right now in the Bay Area is one of them.
Although famous interracial couples are now all over the media making them an everyday occurrence, there are times when being in your unique partnership can be challenging. Your parents may not have approved of your partner due to their racial background. People may have stared at you and your partner together in public. Your friends may have asked ignorant questions that don’t feel good for you to hear. Coworkers may unwittingly make jokes about the racial group your partner belongs to when they aren’t around.
While there are certainly some discomforts that you may experience due to your racial differences, there are likely even more opportunities for to share and learn about one another’s racial differences that can help bring you together. You’re continually making your own unique culture that may honestly have less to do with your racial differences, and more so surrounding your unique personalities and interests.
However, just like any other relationship you may have problems. Challenges. Difficulties. Arguments. Verbal fights. Moments or even years of emotional disconnection. Loss of intimacy and more. As interracial couples grow, you can grow apart if you don’t update your relationship with the right communication skills to stay connected. Without these skills, no matter how happy you present to the outside world, your partnership or marriage may continue to experience anger, disconnection, bitterness, or hopelessness. That’s where I come in. Through my helpful counseling and psychotherapy services, you can receive the skills you need to gain greater clarity and connection in your relationship.
How Counseling and Psychotherapy Can Help:
Couples counseling and psychotherapy are both proven methods for helping you find greater clarity and connection. To be clear, for some clients this clarity may help you to decide to separate with greater understanding and compassion than you may have had otherwise.
However, clarity is the first step in the process of learning what your partner needs, and to determine if you are willing to meet their needs in healthy ways. This process will go in the opposite direction as well, giving your partner an opportunity to determine if they would like to meet your needs in healthy ways that feel good for you.
Counseling typically addresses surface level conflicts that occur between partners, and psychotherapy usually affects the deeper conflicts that are holding you back from greater fulfillment and clarity about your relationship. Below, I’ve explained a few differences between the therapeutic approaches of counseling and psychotherapy.
Couples need clarity in order to gain connection. Without clarity, there will continue to be unresolvable misunderstandings, arguments, and emotional disconnection. Whether it’s due to an argument, infidelity, or raising children, couples need to get clear on the issues that are bothering them.
Together, I will help you put matters on the table in terms that you both can agree on, to help you to find effective solutions that meet both of your needs. During your sessions I will use deep listening to hear and validate what each of you are saying. I will be listening for both surface level and deeper conflicts that may be blocking you both for greater enjoyment in your relationship.
Once each of you have a better understanding of the conflicts between you, then I will ask you to explore what it is that you want or need from your partner. These emotional wants and psychological needs could be for more love, safety, respect, or intimacy, etc. There are hundreds of emotional wants and psychological needs that we all have as human beings. From there, I will help you and partner explore healthy ways for you to meet these needs and others in ways that feel good for you. Through this process, you will likely find yourself enjoying new levels of connection with your partner that you may have never experienced before.
On the other hand, you may find that your relationship has run it’s course and is time for it to end. Although this may be a sobering thought for you, you might discover through my counseling process that this may actually be a healthiest decision for you and your partner to make. To be certain, I will never push you toward making any decisions about staying together or separating, but will simply provide you with the space and skilled facilitation for you to find as much clarity and connection as you desire.
You may come into therapy with difficult life experiences that have given you a somewhat skewed lens on life. In fact, we all do. Hardships effect us all. However those difficult life situations such as being abandoned by your father or mother as a child, or being in a physically abusive relationship as a teen, or growing up in a home where love was rarely shown, all impact who you’ve become.
Here are a few examples. Abandonment experiences from your childhood may make you sensitive to your partner leaving you. A physically abusive relationship from your teenage years may make you less able to trust the safety or sincerity of your partner now. Growing up in a home where love was rarely shown may make it difficult for you to express your love openly to your partner.
So when your partner tells you that they’d like to go out more, or expresses anger toward you, or continually asks you to show more love and affection toward them, all of these experiences may trigger prior life difficulties within you that are still unresolved. In these instances, we will work to identify and resolve them through talk therapy, in order for you to show up more fully in your present relationship.
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-Jewel Love, MFT
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I am a mixed race man of African-American and Scottish Canadian descent, and a Bay Area native. I am passionate about helping you and your partner find clarity, connection, and healing.
License and Education
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist #101098
MA, Clinical Psychology
BA, Black Studies
California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists
The Psychotherapist Association for Gender and Sexual Diversity
Therapists of Color Network
Bay Area Open Minds for Poly and Kink Relationships
444 34th Street | Oakland. 94609