No matter how long a couple has been together—five decades or five months—any relationship can benefit from professional counseling or therapy for a variety of reasons. If both partners are willing to put in the effort, seeing a therapist or marital counselor could greatly enhance the dynamic and health of your relationship or marriage. Perhaps the same disagreements keep occurring, or perhaps both of you find it difficult to communicate.
In fact, it is not even necessary for there to be a “problem” in the relationship in order to think about seeing a therapist. According to Jaime Bronstein, a registered relationship therapist and author of MAN*ifesting, couples who simply wish to improve their relationship and feel closer to one another can benefit from therapy.
Author of MAN*ifesting and certified relationship therapist Jaime Bronstein.
As the founder and executive director of Ascensions Psychological Services, Inc. in Washington, D.C., Dr. Satira Streeter Corbitt is a registered clinical psychologist who is also a qualified Gottman Therapist.
Here, we discuss how to recognize the right time to get assistance with two relationship specialists.
Optimal Premarital Therapy
Signs That Counseling Is Needed and When
Do you and your partner disagree on the decision to seek professional help from a therapist or counselor? The warning indications are listed below.
You’re having trouble communicating
According to licensed clinical psychologist Dr. Satira Streeter Corbitt, who is also a qualified Gottman Therapist, “if couples find that their communication efforts are missing the point,” it is probably time to contact a counselor or therapist.
Additionally, you should be conscious of your feelings as you try to communicate. According to Bronstein, couples that have trouble communicating without becoming agitated might benefit from counselling.
There is more bad than good.
This could be a major red flag for couples who discover they spend more time fighting and sorting out issues than they do having fun together. According to Bronstein, couples may benefit from therapy when they have more trying days than happy and quiet ones together.
You Constantly Feel Frustrated
Have you ever been frustrated when your partner acts in a perfectly acceptable way? Therapy may be helpful, according to Dr. Streeter Corbitt, “if [couples] are frequently provoked by their partner’s seemingly neutral actions and/or they find themselves feeling dissatisfied or lonely more often than not.”
Bronstein continues, “There is so much tension in this environment. “Your partnership ought to be your refuge and your secure base. You should seek counseling if you’re feeling depressed, angry, or upset in your relationship.
You’re Holding On
A warning sign in a relationship is feeling like you’re always just getting by. It’s time to seek counseling if your relationship is one in which you are only surviving rather than thriving, advises Bronstein. A healthy relationship should consist of two people who develop both personally and as a couple.
You Experience Criticism, Disrespect, and Resentment
According to Bronstein, “Judgement, disdain, and resentment are relationship destroyers.” “If you feel this way, be aware that it might be time to seek counseling,”
Getting Ready for Couples Therapy
Couples counseling requires hard effort from both partners, just like any other aspect of a relationship does, and preparation for the first counseling or therapy session is a big part of that.
How to Choose the Right Counselor or Therapist
“I always advise consulting a therapist who has been referred to you by a person you know and trust, “”If you are comfortable asking friends if they know of anyone, that is the best way to go,” says Bronstein. “However, if you’re not comfortable talking about this with friends or family, that is totally okay. I recommend posting anonymously in local Facebook groups. You can also do a keyword search (such as “couples therapy”) in Facebook groups to see what has already been posted.
To find a good fit, Dr. Streeter Corbett, a trained Gottman Therapist, advises contacting that network “I firmly believe in the Gottman Method, which was developed over the course of 40 years of couples research, the speaker says. “I advise using the Gottman Referral Network as your beginning point.”
How to Get Ready for Therapy on Your Own
Clarify your aims for therapy and comprehend what you view as the problems in the relationship are the two major things each partner should focus as they get ready for the first therapy session, according to Bronstein. You’ll be able to enter the first session with some sound objectives once you can keep these two items in the forefront of your mind.
Getting Ready as a Couple
Bronstein advises that you each make a commitment to stay compassionate and empathic throughout the process when it comes to mentally preparing for your first session together—because, of course, working through this jointly is just as crucial as mentally preparing independently. Make a vow to treat one another with as much empathy and compassion as you can, she advises. “You will try your best to comprehend one another, listen, validate, and not judge.”
Consider therapy as a partnership investment.
Always respect your voice and your feelings. To identify the problems, trust your feelings and communicate them to your spouse, advises Bronstein. “View counseling as a financial investment. The finest present you can give yourself, in my opinion, is therapy and healing because they can actually change your life and improve it in ways you can’t even begin to comprehend until you go through them.
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