Looking for an Affordable Therapist or Maybe Some Good Advice

Updated on January 24, 2009
R.D. asks from Cedar Hill, TX
5 answers

My boyfriend and I have been together for about 4 years and we have a child together. Our relationship is already strained because he works at night and I go to school in the daytime. We're both working on our realationship but, I dont feel like we communitcate effectively. We really try not to argue especially in front of Brea, but of course thats difficult. I feel the problem is that he doesnt know certain things that pretty much anyone in a realtionship would know. For example: He didnt get me anything for my birthday, and I let it go thinking he didnt have money for it after paying the bills. Well I was fine with that until he came home with a new leather motorcycle jacket for himself. And, I was on our ebay account and saw he purchased a kit for his motorcycle that cost 260.00. He doesnt understand why I was upset. He did order the jacket before my birthday and it came in the mail right after my birthday so I almost understand that. But I feel that the jacket shoulda been put away and outta sight until my bday gift was in hand. Or even better, buy my bday gift BEFORE your jacket. That was November and I STILL dont have a gift. Now, Im not one to dwell on what he can buy me and I think that should be apparent after 4 years. But he's CONSTANTLY buying himself things like the motorcycle and endless parts and kits and helmets and what have you. Not to mention the new clothes and shoes ALL THE TIME. Ive accepted that having those things is important to him. But I think that a few times outta the year(ie. my birthday, mothers day, christmas) it should be about me. And hes actually missed all of those occasions for the last year. Christams twice. Either way, when we talk about stuff like this, he gets hung up on the details, like that he ordered the jacket before my birthday. Or like mothers day when he asked me ON MOTHERS DAY what do I want. Well I want him to think about it before hand and have something for me on the date not ask me that day. When I explain this he focuses on me telling him not to bother getting me anything after the fact. Not why he didnt take the time to get something before hand. AGAIN, its not the stuff I care about. Its that doing something for me wasnt important enough to him to get it done. But any other time he wants something for himself, hes out buying it. Anyway, of course we have other issues. Its not all about buying me stuff. I just feel like when we talk about things he focuses on the details of the situation instead of WHY what happened happened.

I feel like maybe if we were to sit down and talk to somone else about a few things then maybe he'll understand where Im comming from sometimes. I KNOW its not just him. Ive got work to do too. But if we cant sit down and have a productive conversation, we wont get anywhere. SO, long story short, Id really like to find an EXTREMELY AFFORDABLE therapist or couselor to talk to in the DFW Metroplex. If anyone knows one or has any ideas please share. Im open to ideas. Thanks! PS: Mamasource Rocks! :0)

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answers from Dallas on

After 3 years of marriage and 3+ years before that of dating my husband, I can tell you that your boyfriend doesn't "figure it out" and probably never will. Most men are very straight forward. If you want something for your birthday or Christmas or Mother's Day, you should ask for it. Then, if you ask (and I don't mean hint - I mean point blank ask) and he still doesn't get it for you, then you have a reason to be mad. Some men don't want to run the risk of buying the wrong thing; some men are clueless; some men think that unless you tell him what you want, you don't want anything;

Now, if you're worried about all his spending or if your finances are such that you're worried about going into debt, then you should definitely have a talk about that. His habits aren't going to change, so you have to learn to work together on this. And don't ever think that he'll change. Too many women marry men thinking they can change them, but you can't. You have to live with his habits (whether it's buying things; not getting you gifts; or something else) or you have to make the tough decision to go your separate ways.

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answers from Dallas on

Cornerstone Counseling Center in North Richland Hills offers "marriage" or "relationship" counseling. Since they are a Christian based organization, I'm assuming they probably have at least one or two therapists who offer services on a sliding scale. It certainly won't hurt to call and ask. Their phone number is ###-###-####. Even if they can't offer reduced rates that meet your needs, maybe they have a source they can recommend.

My husband and I went to marriage counseling early in our marriage 15 years ago, but I used Gloria Shami, who was in either Euless or Bedford at the time. I really liked her and she did help mine and my husband's communication issues, as is evident having been married 15 1/2 years now. :-) I don't know if she offers reduced rates, but again, worth calling and asking.

On the advice front, it does sound like you and your boyfriend could definitely use some communication coaching. I had a very similar dynamic with my husband early on in our relationship. Our first Christmas after we moved in together, I had NOTHING under the tree so I wrapped up some new windshield wipers and some chip clips and put those under the tree for me. Now, mind you, I didn't do it to make my husband feel guilty at the time. I was just wrapping stuff up, saw that I had nothing under the tree, and just wrapped them up so I'd have something to open on Christmas morning. When my husband saw me open those up, he felt so bad that he hadn't gotten anything for me, that he's NEVER let that happen again. We still, 16 years later, joke about chip clips because of that.

Also, I would always make sure he had something nice that he wanted on his special days and he started noticing that he wasn't doing the same for me. It's pretty evident when he gets a nice bouquet of flowers delivered to his work on Valentine's or a surprise dinner out with his friends on his birthday, and I get nothing. I might mention that I was disappointed that I didn't get anything from him on whatever day, but I never tried to be passive agressive about it or tried to MAKE him feel guilty. I'm more a straight forward kind of communicator. I'm not a good manipulator. And I'm not the type to withhold something just 'cause I'm not getting what I want in return. Eventually, I was the one getting beautiful roses sent to work on Valentine's day (without asking for them) and nice things for my birthday, mother's day, etc.

For me, it was never about the things. It was about the lack of thought when he didn't even bother to make an effort, which I'm sure is what you're feeling. Nowadays, we joke when we go to the store around Valentines and we see all the fresh cut flowers, and he'll say, "look at all these lovely flowers I picked for you", and I'll say, "oh, I love them, thanks so much for thinking of me, maybe we should take a picture so they'll last longer", and then we laugh about it, cause I don't want him to spend any of our money on fresh cut flowers anymore. It's just not in the budget now if you know what I mean. :-)

Anyway, when you're communicating with him, I recommend you make it to the point. "I'm very disappointed that you didn't make the effort to get me a birthday gift." Don't add anything about what he's gotten for himself or that he's done it in the past, etc. If you don't give him anything else to "focus" on except the real issue at hand, the thing that you most want him to answer for, he can't pull something else out of what you said that he can make an excuse with. If he comes back with "I didn't have any money" or "I didn't have time to get you anything", then you can remind him about the gifts he got for himself, but you don't make that your primary focus. I don't think you really care that he got himself something. It seems more like you care that he didn't get you anything. If you combine the two right off the bat, he can twist it around to make it about you not wanting him to have anything, when all you really care about is him not making the effort to do something for you.

Of course, some men just don't get it. And if your man is one of those men, you have to choose to live with it or move on. You can't change someone else, only yourself. If my husband wanted to, he could have just ignored my feelings and never made an effort to make me feel special, but he's not that kind of guy. If your guy wants to change and wants to make you feel special, letting him know how you feel should be enough. If he doesn't care about those things, you need to be prepared to let it go or let him go. Otherwise you'll spend your life trying to make him make you feel special and that's a losing battle my friend.

Good luck! I hope you can get some help with your communication issues soon!


2 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

A good sliding-scale place is Youth and Family Counseling in Flower Mound. There number is ###-###-####. I actually used to work there, and they have several good therapists on staff.

And even if he refuses to go to counseling for whatever reason, I encourage you to still go.

Best of luck to you and your relationship.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

You sound like a smart woman. Find that affordable counselor anywhere you can. If your boyfriend is not willing to go, then go alone......no excuses. Obviously you know in your heart that even though you love this man, there are things that could be deal breakers when it comes to "forever." Find them out now and quickly. You need to know if this man truly treasures you. None of us have perfect relationships and we all struggle, but in order to be happy there must be mutual respect. You've made your feelings clear. What you want to find out is how important your feelings are to him.

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answers from Dallas on

First, alot of it sounds like your ages. To some degree we've all had things like that happen in our younger years together as a couple because you learn how to be a couple, a unit, a family.... it doesn't just happen and you have to struggle with it.

Second, many churches offer great marriage development courses. I know you're not married but that may be something to look into...

Third, Jane Byer in Lewisville is a very affordable counsellor and she's easy going and comfortable (at least for me).

650 S Edmonds Ln # 120
Lewisville, TX 75067

1 mom found this helpful
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