Couples counseling is often recommended when the relationship is not working for some reason. Counseling can definitely help two people, married or not, gain a better understanding of each other and help with communication. Couples therapy should help two people improve their relationship. But this kind of therapy is not easy. You will need to be active in therapy and learn to be better.
Who Needs to Change?
Many people coming into therapy as a couple want the other person to change. Unfortunately, this is often the wrong attitude in couple’s counseling. You both brought your own problems into the relationship and both of you need to change to learn to work together as a team. You may already know what you need to do, but you aren’t doing it. Your therapist can help you with the real work of understanding why you are holding back.
Therapy can help you resolve differences and manage conflict more effectively. No couple is ever going to be free of conflict. It’s about how you resolve conflict that matters. Your therapist can offer tools to help you understand your partner’s position, but only you can make changes that lead to growth in the relationship.
The goal of couple’s counseling is to change the way you interact with each other, but what that really looks like depends on your own vision. You decide what goals you want out of counseling. The goal doesn’t have to be that you save the relationship. It could simply be that you learn to co-parent as you dissolve the marriage.
Couple’s counselors will not take sides. Your counselor probably won’t recommend divorce. The main focus with couple’s counseling is getting the source of your difficulties and finding resolutions. Good couple’s counselors will make sure both parties are safe.
Couples counseling isn’t easy. It involves a lot of self-reflection and study to discover how the hurts of the past make up the you of today. You have to be honest with yourself and your partner to get the full benefit of counseling. It’s a risk that you need to take to improve your relationship and become healthier. Even if you decide not to stay together, the lessons learned in therapy will help you in the future. You may think the other person needs to change, but hopefully, you’ll grow.
How Long Will Couples Counseling Take?
Couples therapy only works as well as the people in the process. Most couples can find a resolution within two to four months of regular weekly appointments with an experienced therapist in Palatine, IL. But this depends on your own goals and backgrounds and what you want out of your relationship.
Thanks to Lotus Wellness Center for their insight into counseling and the goal of couples counseling.