Marriage counseling, also called couples therapy, is a type of psychotherapy. Marriage counseling helps couples of all types recognize and resolve conflicts and improve their relationships. Through marriage counseling, you can make thoughtful decisions about rebuilding your relationship or going your separate ways.
Here are the different types of therapy:
- Individual therapy – Individual therapy mainly delves into the underlying causes of the recurring problems (such as unhealthy relationships or harmful behavioural patterns).
- Couples therapy (marriage counseling) – This is ideal for married couples who want to learn how to work through their differences, communicate better and solve repeated challenges in their relationship.
- Family therapy – Family therapy is all about treating more than one member of the family (often at the same time) to help the family resolve issues and improve interaction.
Even though therapy is extremely valuable, it still remains a shrouded subject and many myths persist. These misunderstandings can often prevent people from seeking help and improving their situations. Here are some common myths associated with therapy.
1. Only crazy couples need it. You don’t
Fact: A number of couples who are healthy, balanced and successful in their careers see therapists to work through a specific problem. That’s because they need help figuring out why they are not happy about something. Other common reasons could be issues like depression, anxiety or loss of a loved one. There’s nothing remotely crazy about getting help.
2. It’s only for weak people
Fact: In fact, it takes a strong person (or couple) to go to a therapist. Only those who really want to help themselves can gather the courage to do this. A therapist can give you tools to become stronger and enable you to work through your problems.
3. It’s doesn’t really work
Fact: Therapists are unbiased individuals. He/she is an impartial, neutral person who will assist you in solving your issues – and that is exactly why they can be of help! Of course, no therapist can claim to solve your problems. If you wish to benefit from therapy, it will take a lot of work on your part – meaning, it will put you in the driving seat to make positive changes in your life.
4. It’s for people with “serious” issues
Fact: Some people think that you must be diagnosed with a disorder to seek therapy. Research also proves that couples wait for about six years before getting help. Waiting escalates the problems and makes them all the more difficult to resolve. So no, you don’t need to have ‘serious’ medical issues to get help.
5. It’s unnecessary
Fact: Why does one need therapy when they can just talk to good friends? There’s a belief that good friends can substitute for therapy. Of course friends are important and one can confide in them to get support but it can never be replaced with the insight that a therapist offers.
Good couples therapy teaches you more than just good “communication” skills. It helps you see another individual’s perspective and teaches you that the other can be different from you. Ideally, there must be no stigma attached to getting help and resolving a conflict. Get help whenever you feel you need to reach out!
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.