Over the years, reasons for marriage counseling have expanded from marriage finances, infidelity, and marriage communication to many other unconventional but important reasons like managing relationships outside family and digital-age issues, to name a few.
Statistics have also indicated that almost one-fifth of first marriages have ended in divorce. The divorce rates, of course, depend on various factors that include but are not exclusive to the education level and the religious beliefs of the partners involved.
Various other strong factors may contribute to couples getting divorced, such as incompatibility, selfishness, and indifference.
When do you know you can work out the problems in your marriage or it is time to seek a divorce? Watch this video for insights on the only three reasons you should get a divorce.
When marriages break up, they will bring plenty of difficulties for the couples involved and their children, if any.
The breaking up of a family is one of the most devastating and stressful events in people’s lives. Divorce always brings uncertainty and doubts about how life will shape the future.
But first, what is marriage counseling? Some reasons for marriage counseling include – To identify marriage related stressors, overcome conflicts, or help repair the relationship.
What is marriage counseling?
Marriage counseling or counseling for married couples is also known as marriage therapy or couples therapy. As the name suggests, it is a therapy or counseling for marriage problems and relationship troubles.
Marriage counselors, usually holding a license, are allowed to give marriage counseling. Marriage counseling involves helping the couple devise ways to communicate better, sort out their issues, and find ways to sustain their marriage.
To know more about marriage counseling, read here.
How does marriage counseling work?
Marriage counseling works with the ultimate goal of helping you achieve harmony in your marriage and with yourself.
What does marriage counseling do?
One of the main prerequisites for marriage counseling is the presence of both partners. If neither partner is present or willing to work on issues, it may not be possible for the professional to help at all.
However, you can still attend the counseling session alone as it will help you work on yourself and may help you become a better person and partner.
While marriage counseling sessions may not be very emotionally comfortable, good things will likely come from them. It creates a safe space for you to talk to your partner and someone who can help.
Most marriage counseling sessions are short-term – looking to solve a specific problem. However, if you or your therapist feel that you have more work to do, you can also make it a long-term plan.
To know more about marriage counseling, read here.
When is marriage counseling appropriate?
For some couples, divorce looks like the only choice in their relationship, but for others, it may not be easy, and they may like to salvage whatever is left in that relationship.
One of the common reasons for marriage counseling is to address a specific problem in the relationship. One of the main reasons people want to reach out to a marriage counselor is to seek help with intimate and close relationships.
So, when to seek marriage counseling?
When couples face issues in their married lives, they may think about when it is appropriate to go for marriage counseling. So if you can identify with any of these scenarios, you need to visit a counselor for relationships.
10 common reasons for couples to go for marriage counseling
If you ask, “Do we need marriage counseling?” there could be other marital issues rearing their ugly head. Here are some situations that may become reasons for marriage counseling.
1. When both partners are unable to resolve their differences
When a couple experiences discord in their relationship, they are fully aware of the gradual strain on their relationship. They know what they are going through but cannot fix it. This is just the right time to get a marriage counselor involved. A skilled psychologist will be able to push them in an amicable direction.
If your relationship has unfortunately reached a level where you both do not want to talk to each other or are just unable to have a conversation without a fight, it can be one of the reasons for marriage counseling.
Similarly, it may be the right time to involve a marriage counselor if you cannot have a positive conversation and only end up talking negatively.
It is very difficult to recover from an affair, and it will take a lot of hard work to get out of this situation. One of the top reasons for marriage counseling is to repair a strained relationship post-infidelity.
It will require willingness and commitment to forgive your partner and move on. There are no shortcuts in solving such a discord. If the partners are committed to seeking therapy and they are honest with themselves, they could save their marriage from collapsing.
Committing to resurrecting relationship happiness is also one of the top reasons for marriage counseling.
It is a healthy step for both partners to reconcile to the fact and move on in their married life. Seeking marriage counseling will help you explore and work on marriage issues within a healing space.
3. When couples want to stay together only for their children’s sake
The couple may feel that it would be wiser to continue living with one another for the sake of their kids.
It would help to get a third party involved. Many couples have felt that they have done the right thing by staying together, and they have thanked their stars for being able to resolve their issues to strive for a healthy and positive relationship.
Once the couples factored in one or more reasons to seek marriage counseling, they felt that counseling was probably the best decision under the circumstances for them as well as their children. So, one of the key reasons for marriage counseling is the happy family dynamic.
Choosing to go to marriage counseling can seem like a big decision. It involves confusion and apprehensions, but counseling for couples can be potentially beneficial. That answers the question, “Will counseling help my marriage?”
4. When you are afraid to talk to your partner
Fear about communicating your needs or complaints is not new in relationships or marriages. This fear could stem from how your partner has previously behaved in similar situations. It could also arise from physical abuse or violence you have experienced in the past, in this relationship, or a previous one.
If you feel you are always walking on eggshells with your partner, it may be the right time to involve a counselor in the scene.
5. When affection or sex is withheld as punishment
If you or your partner have started to withhold affection or sex as punishment for the way the other behaves, it may be time to involve a marriage counselor before it is too late.
This can be problematic because it reflects that your relationship is no longer based on the foundation of love and communication. Still, resentment or anger against each other has started to build up.
Have you started seeing your partner as a villain in your life or marriage?
Does everything they do seem wrong to you?
Have you started to detest them, or worse, resent them?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, it might be the right time to see a marriage counselor.
7. When you start hiding information from your partner
While cheating is problematic in itself, even withholding important information from your partner may mean there is trouble in paradise.
This information may or may not be about someone in your life. It could be about where you are and who you are with. It could also be financial or even trivial, like what you ate or whether or not you smoked.
However, suppose your marriage has come to a point where either you are contemplating or considering having an affair, or you find yourself inclined towards someone other than your partner romantically.
In that case, it may be a good idea to involve a marriage counselor before things get out of hand.
9. When you need a fresh start
Seek couples’ therapy when you want to stop carrying on business as usual in your marriage and would like to start afresh with your partner. You may need this for whatever reasons.
Maybe one of you cheated, but you both do not want to give up on your marriage. Maybe you have hit a few roadblocks in your marriage but are willing to work through those differences to have a healthy marriage.
10. For the sake of your family
The fear of facing the uncertainty and harshness of an estranged couple’s lives is also one of the reasons for marriage counseling.
Children, particularly, will go through the negative effects of divorce through feelings of being abandoned, denial, and guilt. Factoring in children’s best interests is one of the crucial reasons to seek marriage counseling.
Does relationship counseling really work?
Is marriage counseling beneficial? The effectiveness of marriage counseling depends on how deeply ingrained these marital problems are. Still, there are many types of effective marriage counseling, including emotionally-focused couples therapy (EFT), developed by Dr. Sue Johnson.
EFT has a whopping 70-75% success rate in rebuilding a broken and damaged relationship.
So if you want to save your marriage, emotionally focused couples therapy might be your answer. Recovering your marriage satisfaction is one of the reasons to seek marriage counseling, as it may be your fastest route to restoring your marriage.
Best relationship counseling will help you learn surprising lessons about marriage and life.
What questions should I ask a marriage counselor?
Here are some questions you can ask a marriage counselor initially when you just begin therapy:
How long have they been working with couples?
What are their qualifications?
Do they take sides?
What is their process with couples?
Why do they do this work?
Why is marriage counseling important?
Most qualified relationship counseling experts will help you learn that there are no winners or losers in the marriage game. They will facilitate repairing trust, establishing respectful boundaries, and re-establishing violated boundaries in a relationship.
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.
Rachael Pace is a noted relationship writer associated with Marriage.com. She provides inspiration, support, and empowerment in the form of motivational articles and essays. Rachael enjoys studying the evolution of loving partnerships and is passionate about writing on them. She believes that everyone should make room for love in their lives and encourages couples to work on overcoming their challenges together.