Couples Therapy Can Help Mend a Marriage
Problems and crises can affect any
relationship, no matter how much two people love each other. Sometimes you might need
professional help to resolve a problem. Some mental health experts are trained to
couples heal pain, rebuild trust, and improve communication.
Research shows that couples who seek couples therapy increase their chance of staying
together. They also improve communication and satisfaction in their relationship.
What is couples therapy?
Couples therapy is short-term
counseling. It’s provided by licensed therapists trained to help couples resolve
conflicts. An effective therapist helps couples understand their problems. They teach
the couple ways to help them work out disagreements and come up with solutions.
When can it help?
Common issues marriage counselors are trained to help with include:
- Conflicts about money issues
Conflicts about raising
Couples are less likely to benefit
from therapy if they wait too long before getting help. Therapy is not likely to help
one partner is not interested in saving the marriage.
How does couples therapy work?
Different therapists have different
approaches to counseling couples. The therapist encourages each partner to answer
honestly and fairly to questions. The therapist acts as a mediator or referee. They
guide the participants to an understanding of each other’s feelings. The therapist
model respect and acceptance. Marriage counselors don’t take sides. They stay neutral
and open to helping both people.
Honesty and a willingness to bring deep-seated resentments and disappointments to
the surface in a safe environment with a trained mental health professional are often
the key to healing.
What if one partner won’t attend counseling?
Couples therapy works best when
both people in the relationship go to the sessions. If one partner won’t go, it may
still help if the other person learns better communication skills and puts them to
Couples therapy works best when both people are committed to change and problem
How do you choose a couples therapist?
Look for a marriage counselor who is a licensed mental health professional. This includes
Licensed clinical social
Licensed marriage and family
- Clinical mental health counselor (CMHC)
The American Association for
Marriage and Family Therapy also provides information on credentialed therapists.
may need to meet with more than one therapist before you find a therapist with whom
feel comfortable. There are no guarantees that couples therapy will save or improve
relationship. But many couples find that a fair, experienced counselor can clarify
issues they couldn’t resolve on their own.