Healing Relationships through Marriage Therapy and Relationship Therapy
If you and/or your spouse feels like your marriage is falling apart, if you fight more than feels healthy, if you feel like things are totally out of control, or if you just feel like you need help…we can help. No matter how complex the issues, we are relationship experts and have the necessary experience in marriage counseling to work through even the toughest marriage and family problems. You probably already understand that relationships present the most rewarding and simultaneously challenging aspects in life; having an experienced therapist to help navigate when the ride gets rocky can help strengthen your relationship over time.
Counseling can be a scary step to take even if you are already aware that you are in need of help. Sometimes it takes someone with an outside perspective, experience, and a kind heart to help you through the tough times and give you hope that things will get better. Get started today by contacting Pathways Real Life Recovery for a couples counseling appointment.
Benefits of Marriage Therapy and Relationship Therapy
Marriage therapy or couples counseling sessions bring the two of you together with the intention of fostering bonds of emotional closeness by helping you learn better ways to communicate clearly. We can help you develop and maintain deeper levels of intimacy as you learn how to more effectively understand and meet each other’s emotional needs and develop a tool belt of skills to work through conflicts in a healthy way.
Here is a partial list of issues marriage counseling can help resolve:
- A situation where you and your spouse hardly talk to each other, or your talk is mostly negative in nature;
- One or both partners feels afraid to talk to the other;
- Sexual infidelity (or the contemplation thereof);
- Financial secrecy or domination of household finances by one partner;
- One or both of you is keeping secrets from the other;
- Relationships where one partner has become more of an antagonist than a teammate;
- Affection that is often withheld as a form of punishment;
- The belief that everything would work out if only the other person would change;
- The pattern of spouses who are living separate lives and have become more like roommates than partners;
- Changes in your sex life that have lead to ongoing conflict;
- Any issue that seems to have no resolution every time it comes up, or if you often find yourselves arguing over the same little things.
The Importance of Premarital Counseling
Although premarital counseling initially had its start in religious institutions, its practical applications in a non-religious setting have proven to be an invaluable way for couples to connect before making their permanent commitment. Through premarital counseling, couples of any gender, race or religion learn to identify and deal with areas of conflict that may arise in their relationship. In addition to this, premarital counseling can prevent situations that are small right now, from developing into mountains in the future.
Develops Communication Skills
When couples go to premarital counseling programs, they open up and talk together, with an individual who has the needed training to help them come to terms and help them better understand each other. Having this third party is no doubt one of the main benefits of couples talking with a counselor before marriage. They tend to view each other more compassionately while developing communication skills that will get them through the more difficult times.
Brings Existing Issues out into the Open
Many couples have dysfunctional behaviors towards one another, which may include control and addiction for example. A premarital counselor will address these issues and help couples to correct them.
In a relationship, some partners have a tendency to isolate themselves when they have difficulty expressing their feelings. This type of avoidance can cause serious issues in the relationship. A therapist teaches the couple how to express their feelings instead of bottling them up.
Helps Couples Plan for the Future
Premarital counseling therapy also helps couples actively plan for their future. Financial, or family planning goals may be discussed, along with ways to accomplish these goals. A big part of this is the couple discussing their expectations of one another.
People often enter into a marriage, having a completely different set of expectations of what exactly it means to have a successful marriage. Through proper marital preparation, a counselor compares and contrasts what each partner expects from the other and from the relationship in general.
Finances are often a very touchy subject among married and unmarried couples alike. Many people become uncomfortable when discussing finances. Spending and budgeting often cause marital conflicts. It is best to establish financial precedents now, before even getting married, to prevent conflict later.
A counselor will ask a lot of questions when they are working with an engaged couple. If you really listen to your partner’s answers, you can learn so much about them. However, beyond that, you can learn so much about yourself. Premarital counseling provides a safe space where your partner may disclose information that they may have been reluctant to share elsewhere. It is also space where it is okay for partners to share something that they may be nervous or upset about regarding their partners.
Additional Benefits of Premarital Counseling
In premarital counseling, you are taught how to resolve conflict in the most stress-free manner possible. Couples are also taught how to avoid letting toxic resentment build up in their relationship, which can be detrimental to their love life. If both partners are comfortable talking about it, the couples’ sex life can be discussed honestly and openly, which can be quite helpful down the road. Lastly, participating in premarital counseling can lend confidence to the relationship. Both partners may feel good at knowing that they have done all they could do to start their marriage off on the right foot.
Pre-Marriage Counseling Can Help Couples Get Off to a Great Start
By helping couples who are dating or already engaged learn more about their differences and more importantly, how to resolve them before actually getting married, pre-marriage counseling presents an excellent opportunity to start your marriage off on the right foot. Knowing how to use tools to effectively communicate without blaming is a powerful skill that will serve you and your spouse well throughout your life together. Many couples may not have discussed important issues that are likely to come up as partners. Pre-marital counseling can walk a couple through these tough topics and help you identify areas that are likely to come up between the two of you before they become grounds for divorce.
Does Marriage Counseling Really Work?
A number of studies indicate hat relationship counseling really does work to deepen intimacy between partners and lower the risk of divorce, but there is a catch; marriage counseling is generally only effective when BOTH parties are really committed to lovingly working through the issues together. There are a number of conditions that can prevent couples therapy sessions from actually being helpful; if one or both partners chooses not to complete requested homework assignments designed to help them change negative patterns of thinking and relating to their spouse, for example, then deeply ingrained patterns of behavior are not likely to be reversed. If verbal or physical abuse causes one of you to clam up while talking with your therapist, you may not get very far, or if either or both of you are suffering from an addiction or mental illness which has not been treated or addressed beforehand, relationship counseling is not likely to help your marriage. In some cases, one or both partners has already decided to end the marriage before even beginning therapy and simply uses the sessions as the opportunity to inform the other partner of their decision.
Marriage Counseling and Relationship Therapy FAQ
Experienced Marriage and Relationship Therapist in the Greater Salt Lake City Area
At Pathways Real Life Recovery, we ensure that all of our counselors are unbiased and have the necessary education, skills and life experiences to help you work through the issues unique to your marriage. We also offering counseling to individuals and families in need of intervention. No matter how difficult your challenges, we can help you build or rebuild a great marriage with proven techniques, skills, and a caring attitude. We have convenient locations in Sandy, Utah and Tooele, Utah and provide free assessment opportunities. Contact us today to get started or to ask any questions you may have.