When a couple goes to relationship therapy, it is an opportunity to put all the issues on the table with the objective of a positive resolution. For some, relationship therapy, especially if being pursued for the first time, can be viewed with caution. Since the sessions are often managed by a total stranger to the couple, there is a hesitation in the minds of the partners of how much or little they should share with the relationship therapist.
Share with your therapist what you hope to achieve
It is not assumed that each partner will have the same objective in relationship therapy. While the best results will come from therapy where the couple has a mutual objective, the reality is that one partner may have a different objective from the other. Where there is conflict in a relationship, communication will be at a low and the couple may fail to communicate an objective before getting to therapy. You should not be afraid to share your objective and be honest about it. This is generally the first topic to be discussed in any session.
Share what you consider to be the problem
In some instances, the problem that led to the need for relationship therapy is clear to both partners. However, in other scenarios, each partner might have a different opinion of what the problem is. This must be communicated to the therapist. It is not profitable to just agree with your partner on what the problem is. At all times during therapy, you should feel comfortable with sharing your thoughts and opinions; and especially those that differ from your partner.
Share your feelings and emotions
Therapy represents a neutral and non-judgmental ground on which you will be able to express and share your emotions. Outside of this environment, a partner might be guarded with sharing his or her emotions or would have been shut down or ignored. Suppressed emotions do not foster a successful relationship therapy. It is therefore critical that you share your emotions and how you are feeling at all times.
What you should not share
While therapy is best achieved when the parties are open and expressive, there are certain things that can stay out of the therapy session. There is no need for name calling or derogatory statements that are geared towards purposely hurting the other party. Some partners may use therapy as a new environment to continue emotional abuse that is taking place in the relationship. Additionally there is no benefit to making false statements or exaggerating. One or both partner in a quest to “win” may add to or subtract from the truth. The best results are achieved when the parties are honest in their expressions.
Therapy is where a couple goes to put all the issues on the table. The hope is to resolve the issues, repair the relationship and rebuild with love. However, how little or how much you say can significantly hamper the therapy process.