Termination in Counseling and How to Move Forward?

What Is Termination in Counseling and How Do You Move Forward

Undergoing marriage counseling is a mutual choice, together.

You and your partner will undergo sessions where in your psychotherapist will present different techniques that will result in achieving realistic goals in your marriage that need working out.

Now, marriage counseling isn’t forever, nothing is. In fact, it’s just a phase that you will need to undergo especially when you are facing marital problems.

As they say, everything comes to an end, including your marriage counseling sessions. This is what you call termination in counseling. We may be too focused on how we can adjust and start the marriage therapy but most often than not, we are not really sure on what is termination in counseling and how do you move forward after the sessions are over.

End of the process – termination in counseling

Marriage counseling isn’t just a task that you and your partner will go to every week, it’s far more than that, its building trust, empathy, openness, cooperation and will require you to invest a lot especially emotionally.

You just don’t focus on personal development here but also growth and maturity as a couple, it’s definitely assuring to know that there is someone out there that will guide you in fixing your marriage without judging you.

That’s why ending the marriage counseling process may actually be difficult for some couples but it’s definitely a part that we have to face.

Termination in counseling is the concluding stage of your marriage counseling journey and it marks the end of the program and the start of practicing what you’ve learned from all your sessions.

If you think preparing for the start of the marriage counseling process is important, you’ll learn along the way how the termination process is as vital.

Types of termination in counseling

  • Forced termination

This is when the counseling contract will end even if the “goals” haven’t been met or there are still sessions to be completed.

There can be many reasons why this happens. Most of the time, it may be issues or misunderstandings between the couple and their therapist. Some may think or feel that ending the marriage counseling process is equal to being abandoned and this may cause a feeling of betrayal, abandonment, and even believing false promises on the part of the client.

This then may lead the client to want to stop the program all together.

  • Client-initiated termination

Types of termination in counseling

This is where the client initiates the termination of the marriage counseling program.

There are two main reasons why this happens. One reason is where the couple feels uneasy with the therapist and feels that they won’t be able to open up and give their complete cooperation in the therapy.

This usually happens in the first few sessions of the marriage counseling process. The other most common reason is that the client would feel that they have achieved the end of the counseling process, meaning they are confident that they have resolved the conflict and don’t need more sessions to follow.

In this event, the therapist can agree and can finalize the termination process.

  • Counselor-initiated termination

Usually, good news since the therapist sees that the goal has been met and is sure to know that the couple has made progress and doesn’t need more sessions. Depending on the situation and the progress of every session, the program doesn’t have to be completed mandatory.

In fact, as long as the goal is met, the counselor can terminate the program and call it a success. Though sometimes, it’s the clients who are not willing to end the counseling program as it has become a tool for them and they are often afraid of going back without assistance.

Moving towards the termination process and setting expectations

Choosing to enroll in a marriage counseling program has a lot of benefits and the main objective of marriage counseling is to make your marriage work out. With the use of effective and proven techniques, the couple will come to understand what marriage is and will learn to respect each other.

Every program includes a goal to be achieved and therefore an effective plan will always include setting expectations. Marriage counselors know that their clients will rely and trust them and sometimes, abruptly letting them know that the program is about to end may cause unexpected reactions.

It’s important to explain how each of the processes works and what methods shall be used. It’s also vital to be transparent about the progress and when the counseling will end.  Having an idea what is termination in counseling and when is it going to happen is something all clients will want to know ahead of time.

This way, the clients would have enough time to adjust.

Tips for effective termination in counseling

Successful methods of counseling termination is possible, marriage counselors would, of course, be familiar with how they would approach their clients and most of the time, they follow proven tips for termination in counseling.

  • Therapists or marriage counselors would explain how the termination process works. This is to be done in the beginning or the mid part of the program.
  • Establish clear communication and goals with your clients and be able to explain how the progress works. This way, they are also aware that they might be near the end of the program.
  • If ever, it’s the client’s decision to terminate the program early, it should be respected.
  • Let them know that they can seek counsel if they need it.
  • Allow clients to vent, share their emotions and thoughts about the termination of the program.

A closing chapter – a new beginning for couples

Marriage counseling is an important process, a phase wherein two people will decide to fight for their marriage. In this process, both will grow and as the relationship gets better – the program will near its end.

This termination won’t signal abandonment from someone who has guided you but as a way for the couple to give their marriage another chance.

What is termination in counseling without application?

At the end of every process is application and reality is, marriage will only be worked out by the couple practicing what they have learned and slowly growing through months and years of togetherness. Every couple after marriage counseling will move forward with the confidence that everything will work out.

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