What happens in Marriage Counselling? It is the foremost question that comes to mind when couples are looking for help. In this article, we will discuss things you can expect from relationship counselling.
Couples who are experiencing strife, feeling disengaged, and at the end their rope may not know that marriage counselling is an option. They might be afraid of it, unsure what will happen in a marriage counselling office, or anxious about the idea of including a third person in their intimate lives.
Knowledge is power, and it can also bring you comfort. It’s a great idea to seek marriage counselling if your relationship seems damaged beyond repair.
Couples often seek a marriage counselor when they are on the brink of divorcing. However, it is more beneficial and sometimes even more effective for them to see a relationship counsellor before these damaging patterns become habitual and difficult to change.
What is Marriage Counseling?
Marriage counselling is a type of psychotherapy that helps resolve conflicts between couples and improves their relationship. Marriage therapists help couples make the right decisions about whether to rebuild their relationship or go their separate ways. The treatment plan usually involves both the spouses, although sometimes one partner may prefer to work with a therapist on their own. Although our intentions toward our spouse may be good, there are many influences, behaviors, and stressors that can strain even the most strong bonding. Even the happiest couples will admit that marriage isn’t always easy.
Couples often bring their most pressing issues to therapy: high levels of conflict and growing distance. Stressful life events and major life changes can also put pressure on a relationship. It doesn’t matter what cause it may be; it is best to address relationship problems sooner than later. This is just like you would for any other health problem. Experts estimate that couples wait on average 6 years before seeking help. This is unfortunate as relationship counselling can save your marriage if you seek it sooner.
Every year thousands of couples worldwide seek marriage counselling to resolve their problems. Therapy can identify the patterns causing problems in a relationship and help you fix them. Couples can also learn about how their reactions and actions affect each other.
You can use couples counseling to address many problems like:
- Communication problems
- Sexual issues
- Substance abuse
- Emotional distance
- Financial problems
- Anger issues
- Affaire and infidelity
What Happens in Marriage Counselling
Marriage counseling can help you rebuild your relationships and make your family happy. Couple counselling, also known as marriage counselling addresses problems between married couples. Most marriage counselling is provided by licensed therapists. Each counsellor will approach a situation differently, so it’s important to understand how you are being treated. The counsellor may start with some basic questions and then ask you, “What brought you here?” Although the question may not seem complicated, it’s worth taking the time to answer.
Your history will be questioned by the therapist. The therapist expects you to be open, honest, and talkative with your partner. Your counsellor might want to speak to you individually or together, depending on your situation. Your therapist may give feedback or recommend treatment plans after the initial conversations. You will be able to communicate better, negotiate differences, and even argue better. Marriage counselling is usually a short-term process, and only a few sessions are needed to resolve the differences.
Whether it’s at the end of a relationship or the beginning of problems, when you visit a marriage counselor, there are some key misconceptions and myths that many people have about marriage counseling. Let’s dispel these myths, and you will better understand what happens in marriage counselling.
1. Both of you don’t need to attend
Although it is best to have both spouses attend counseling, it is not necessary. It’s better to have something than nothing, and you can still make progress even if one of your partners is not there.
Counsellors can offer advice to help you deal with the stress in your relationship, reduce friction, and even get a reluctant partner to join you in counselling.
2. Topics that are covered in counselling
Here are some topics covered in relationship counselling–
- What issues have you been experiencing in your marriage or relationship?
- How long have these problems been an isssue in your relationship?
- Have you ever been in any type of counselling before?
- What have you and your partner done to resolve these issues?
- What are your expectations of couples counselling?
3. You determine the final result
Although you will be guided, you are ultimately in control of the outcome. A counsellor is not able to transfer power. They are not your boss, judge, or special expert and will not tell you what to do. They will often ask you lots of questions to help you understand what you want and how it feels.
They won’t pressure you into making decisions or force you to do things you aren’t comfortable with. Your life is your own. You can control it both outside and inside the counselling office.
4. They might ask about your childhood
Talking about your problems will help you to see the bigger picture. Many people assume that a therapist will help them solve their problems by focusing on the details. This is not always true. Counsellors may want to know about your childhood, communication styles, past relationships, and your relationship, as well as any areas of friction. They might also ask for examples of times when you were happy together.
Your counselor will help you connect the dots and make it easier for you to understand yourself better.
5. Reflection, communication, and taking responsibility are essential
Counsellors don’t do all of the work. You do. Counsellors will encourage you to think, reflect and not react. They will ask you to express your feelings and thoughts. Your therapist will ask you to share your thoughts and feelings, even if you aren’t a natural communicator. However, you must be open to it.
6. Do your homework
Your counsellor may give you couple activities or exercises to do or other tasks that will help improve the effectiveness of your sessions.
7. You get out of it what you put into it, no matter what
You will reap the benefits of counselling regardless of whether you choose to be together or separate. If you attend but don’t engage, you’ll simply be passing the time, wasting money, and it won’t make any difference.
If you follow your counsellor, do the homework, really reflect, and try to take on board the techniques for change they suggest, couples can become closer and more self-aware, regardless of where life takes you from that point.
This is what happens in marriage counselling. If you and your spouse are considering relationship counselling and believe you would benefit from a consultation with a professionally trained marriage counsellor or psychologist, then contact us today.
Dr. Neha Mehta is a professionally trained psychologist who works to make sure that couples have a chance to speak and be heard. We will teach and encourage you to become better listeners and communicate your needs. It will help you gain a better understanding of each other’s needs and concerns without falling into a never-ending spiral of conflict or arguments.