Listen to this recording that Hedy made about how she invites couples into the realm of “presencing in connection”, and how she supports them in acquiring the skills of “into-me-see.”
Transcript of the audio:
I am Hedy Schleifer. I am a psychotherapist.
My specialty is to welcome “couples on the edge,” couples in a “healing crisis.”
I am going to take you into my consultation room, and give you a glimpse of how during an Intensive two-day session, I guide a couple to enter into the power and the wisdom of their connection.
I first take them into the “future.”
I invite them to speak their “wildest dreams” for the relationship, and put their deepest aspirations on the horizon.
I then take them into their “darkest past.”
I have them observe themselves, after 13 minutes of having had their toughest conversation, as if they were at a restaurant “people-watching” this couple, not knowing their language.
They then describe the body language and the facial expressions they perceived in this couple.
They also describe the climate in the space between them.
In doing so, they illustrate what I call “the universal survival dance”, where tensions rise, emotions escalate, and toxicity is in the air.
My third step with this couple is to take them into the “here and now,” where they can truly connect.
I tell them about three “invisible connectors”: the Space, the Bridge and the Encounter
What I teach them is how to honor the “relational space” between them, how to “cross the bridge” into each other’s worlds, and how to create the most favorable conditions for a true encounter, an encounter of the souls.
And here is how I coach the beginning of their first “visit” over the bridge.
I call it “presencing”.
Sit across from each other
bring your chairs really, really close
one person’s knees straddling the other’s
take each other’s hands
feel skin to skin the “secret language” of your hands
take a moment to feel the messages that flow between your hands
now look into each other’s eyes…..deeply
you are right now at the perfect gazing distance
we are born to look into the eyes of our loved ones at this close proximity
take in the landscape on your partner’s face in this moment
look…look as if your are seeing your partner’s face for the very first time
Oh! It’s You!
give them “new eyes”
just keep looking….. and breathing
and just with your eyes say “thank you for being here with me”
“thank you for our journey,
thank you for the highs and the lows, the good and the bad
all of it is part of life”
“thank you for your courage…..and for your resilience”
only you truly know the courage and the resilience your partner has expressed during the journey of your relationship
keep looking…..keep gazing into your partner’s eyes
and just with your eyes send a message right now
something you feel like saying with your eyes, just in this moment
with your eyes say to your partner: “You are a gift.”
“Thank you for coming into my life.”
“Presencing” has a profound effect on the couple.
It has been a long time since they have looked so deeply into each other’s eyes, and for so long.
When a couple is “presencing,” they often remember speaking their vows to each other when they got married.
They begin to sense again the deeper essence of each other.
We are wired for connection. We hurt in dis-connection. We heal in re-connection.
“Presencing” helps a couple enter the non-verbal realm, where connection lives.
Once the couple is in the “here and now” with each other, they can begin the journey of authentic re-pair.
They learn a core lesson: “Rupture is inevitable. Re-pair is possible. Connection is our essence.”