What is it?
The developmental model was developed by Ellyn Badyr, Ph.D. and Peter Pearson, Ph.D. of the Couples Institute in Menlo Park. This model is all about growth and development, for partners individually, and as a couple.
Relationships develop according to predictable developmental stages, similar to child development. Many couples find their development stuck, and they fall into several common patterns. Some couples find themselves fighting over everything. They can’t live with each other, and can’t live without each other! Other couples avoid conflict like the plague, but resentments simmer just below the surface. How couples respond to the conflict that arises over their differences is based on each partner’s attachment style. This refers to the adaptations we make as children in response to our parents and caregivers.
Why do relationships fail?
According to this model, couples fail for a number of reasons including:
· Lack of development
· Repetitive re-triggering of emotional trauma without repair
· Lack of skills
Can we fix this?
Positive changes can take place when:
· Partners feel free to develop themselves (be clear about thoughts and feelings)
· Each partner becomes accountable
· Each partner is striving for growth (not just waiting for their partner to change)
· Partners accept each others vulnerability
What are the stages of couple development?
1. Symbiosis: This is the exclusive bonding period where couples fall in love, seek closeness and focus on their similarities.
2. Differentiation: During this stage, couples begin to acknowledge their differences and manage the conflict that arises as a result of the differences.
3. Practicing: During this stage each individual in the couple explores his/her independence and cultivates friendships, career, and personal interests.
4. Rapprochement: During this stage couples move away from and then return to each other. This is often a time when couples often find a new and more vital sexual connection with one another.
5. Synergy: This is a phase defined by mutual interdependence, mature communication and deep and satisfying intimacy.
Where can I learn more? https://www.couplesinstitute.com