Relationship! You may have discovered at an early age that relationship is what it’s all about… From the moment you open your eyes, you are in a relationship with someone or other at some level or other.
This is a basic fact of being a human; we were not meant to be alone, and our very existence is woven into the fabric of multiple interconnected relationships.
These interwoven relationships can be like a net to catch us when we fall, but sometimes they can also feel like a trap, keeping us locked up, stressed and anxious.
Imagine you were to do a random, impromptu survey on a city street, and ask people “What is causing you the most stress in your life right now?” Chances are that a large percentage of the people would say it is a certain relationship in their lives. It may be with a spouse, a colleague or a family member.
Relationships are not always easy
Even in a “good” relationship those difficult, rocky moments are bound to come which need to be carefully navigated and overcome in order to continue the relationship in a healthy way. If not, a wedge comes in, driving you further and further apart, the longer you continue with the unresolved conflict between you.
None of us is born with a natural ability to solve relationship problems. For most of us it is an essential skill which we need to learn, either by trial and error, with much pain and struggling involved.
We can also learn from those who have gone before us and made some of the mistakes already, dedicating themselves to learning skills to help others. This is where a marriage counselor or a relationship counselor can be helpful.
A relationship counselor can be a great source of support
If you are struggling in your relationships, why keep banging your head against the wall and trying to figure something out for yourself. They say, if you keep doing the same thing you will get the same result. So why not admit that you need help and find someone who specializes in helping others to work on their relationships.
The marriage therapist or relationship counselor you chose to confide in should be:
- Someone with trustworthy qualifications
- Someone who shares your religious or faith perspective
- Someone who you can be comfortable with
- Someone who is not focused on money; but instead helping you out
- Someone who can persevere along with you.
If you are not happy with your choice, look for another until you find the right fit for you. Do not be discouraged. Persevere until you find the help that you need.
Steps to choose the best marriage counselor
A marriage counselor or a couples counselor works to improve your marriage by confusing on certain aspects of your relationship such as, conflict resolution and communication skills. Finding a good marriage counselor could just be the difference an effective and a broken marriage.
So to help you with your search for a therapist or for professional marriage counseling, follow these steps on how to find a marriage counselor? or how to choose a marriage counselor?
How to find a good marriage counselor can be very challenging as it is difficult to know who are the good one’s. However, you can always start by asking for referrals and recommendations from friends, family or people that you trust.
Felling uncomfortable during this process is quite natural and expected as you would be exposing something vulnerable about your marriage to others. If in case you are averse to the idea of asking around for a referral, then you can always turn to the internet for guidance.
Be thorough when searching online for the best marriage therapist or for local marriage counselors, check for things like, online reviews, if they are licensed or not, how far would you have to travel and also how much would they cost.
Finally, to make your online search more easier, you can also search through some reputable directories such as National registry of marriage friendly therapist, the American association of marriage and family therapist to find a good relationship counselor.
During your search you would come across different types of marriage counselors who would have received specific training and would have specialized in a particular disorder.
A relationship counselor or marriage therapist needs to not only acquire a particular set of skills for martial therapy but also needs to be licensed to practice it.
A trained therapist practicing marriage therapy would either be a LMFT (licensed marriage and family therapist), LCSW (licensed mental health counselor), LMHC (licensed clinical social worker), a psychologist) and might even be trained in EFT (emotionally focused couple’s therapy).
Knowing what to look for in a marriage counselor starts with asking the right questions to ask during marriage counseling. To access your competence with your relationship counselor you are free to ask some direct questions and set out some concrete goals.
Try to ascertain your relationship counselor perspective about marriage and divorce. You can even ask them if they are married, or have been divorced, and if they have any kids or not.
Even though, such questions does not define the ability of a relationship counselor, it does add to their credibility as a relationship counselor.
Make sure you and your therapist set out guidelines on how to achieve your goals during therapy. Understand what strategies and techniques would be implemented by your therapist and what is the suggested treatment plan.
Apart from feeling comfortable and respected during therapy, asking such questions would help you get a clearer sense of which direction your couple’s therapy is headed.
Finally, trust your instincts to make the better judgement, if you are not happy with a relationship counselor make sure you try to find one that can help sole your marital problems.
Want to have a happier, healthier marriage?
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.
More by Rosemary K