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Why Go to Couples Counseling - Part 5

 


Why Go to Couples Counseling? - Part 5

While mental health awareness has improved, especially over the last few years through the pandemic.  And some of the sitgma around therapy has decreased.  But so many people still wonder why they should participate in couples counseling.

In my mind, there are several "levels" of couples' counseling.

1)  Dating Relationships

2)  Pre-Marital Counseling

3)  Marriage/Couples Counseling

4)  Stage of Life Couples Counseling

5)  When Things Aren't Working


Today, I'll talk about going to Couples Counseling When Things Aren't Working

This is the most common reason why most couples go to therapy.  They seek help when things have gotten so bad, they aren't sure there's a way out.  Couples Counseling at this point is often a last ditch effort.  And it's also this level that causes people NOT to want to go to Couples Counseling...they hear all the horror stories.

Let me preface this by saying that this level of counseling can generally be avoided if counseling is sought throughout the relationship, as noted in the previous blog posts.  

When things aren't working, one or both partners have reached the last straw.  It's so much harder to come back and heal if things have gotten this bad. BUT a skilled therapist can help with this. 

For many people this level is about giving one last effort to save the relationship, often because they've been together a long time, or there are children involved.  For those who pursue couples counseling when things aren't working, it's important to know that usually both partners have to be completed invested in really trying to work things out.  Both partners have to be willing to put in 110% effort and really change the way they've been doing things.  

This type of counseling usually starts because of a build up of issues that have never been addressed, but instead have been pushed aside, put on the back burner, or just ignored.  But the relationship often gets to a point where resentments have build up so much that professional help is needed.  The counselor will often help the couple learn some basic communication skills, to get the lines of communication open again, even just a little bit.  They will use activites to remind the couple of why they fell in love in the first place and what it is they they love and appreciate about each other.  There may be homework such as asking each other a series of "get to know you" questions, so they have an opportunity to get to know their partner all over again.  These activities may take some time because there is so much built up hurt, that the couple may have difficulty even having this level of conversation.  It may even require some real time practice during the sessions.  For couples who seek counseling at this level, the therapist will often have to do a lot of foundational work, before they can begin addressing the actual issues.

Once that happens, then they can slowly begin addressing the underlying issues, one by one.  That's when the real magic happens.

But I'm here to say, I have seen it happen.  I've seen couples come back from infidelity and dishonesty, to a happy, healthy, loving relationship.  
And if I'm being honest, I've also seen some amazing relationships crumble at this level.  Don't let that be you.

If I could share anything with you about this level of Couples Counseling, is to NOT let it get to this point.  Do the work throughout the relationship.  Keep things healthy during the relationship.  It's much easier to maintain, than to try to fix it all at one time.

I specialize in couples counseling and I'm here for you every step of the way.
If you feel like you might be at this level or getting close, and you'd like to schedule a free consultation, just click here.

Thank you for reading the series on Why Go to Couples Counseling.

If you'd like to see previous blog posts on Fair Fighting Rules in Marriage, Couples Communication, Self-Esteem, or Anxiety, please click here.

If you'd like more direct and personal help with improving communication in your relationship, or you're already to the resentment stage, please visit my website and schedule a free 15 minute consultation - www.brittaniedmillslmft.com.

I provide online couples counseling throughout California and Florida.


Website - www.brittaniedmilslmft.com

Email - bdmills@brittaniedmillslmft.com

Phone - (925) 335-6122

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