It may not be comforting to hear, but when I think about the process of fermentation…I think about my work with couples. Fermentation that leads to cheese is this process that begins with sitting in muck allowing for some ugliness to rise to the surface, all for the purpose of the beautiful, emotional experience that is a great cheese. I often tell couples at the beginning of our work together that at times they may feel worse before they feel better. This is because a part of couples therapy is coming to weekly (or more) sessions and talking about the parts of each individual and of their “us” that have long gone ignored or have felt too vulnerable or scary to bring up. The times that have been shoved down further and further so that the couple can function and pretend like life is going on as planned. However, as we continue to work together, those ugly pieces that rise to the surface and make themselves known are also the pieces that help us to allow for positive growth. Growth that comes from the good kind of fermentation- where we sit in the muck so that we may reach the beautiful, emotional experience that is an authentic connection. So here’s to cheese, here’s to couples therapy, and here’s to growing some weird stuff before we make it to the beauty.
Janie McGlasson, MS, LMFT works extensively with adolescents, adults, and couples and specializes in the areas of attachment, trauma, and grief.