Everyone has ups and downs in their relationships, especially if those relationships are long-term. These challenges can bring tough questions to the table, such as whether to stay together or part ways. In many cases, it helps to have a neutral, levelheaded third party help you navigate the storms. It’s even better to have a caring therapist with experience who can help you understand each other and yourselves better as well as teach you ways to communicate and cope with strong emotions.
Couples who seek this therapy may be dealing with substance abuse issues, infidelity, sexual problems, anger, or other conflicts – such as over finances or parenting. Or it can be used before the wedding to help couples strengthen their relationship and prepare for both the good times and the challenges that lie ahead. Much of marriage counseling focuses on teaching vital communication skills and learning how you can put them to work in your relationship. The more open and honest you are about your struggles, the more helpful your counselor can be.
If your partner is unwilling to go to counseling with you, you may go on your own. While it may not be quite as effective as having both parties there, you may be surprised at how much you’ll learn about what you can do to help strengthen yourself and your relationship. This type of therapy is usually short-term, so don’t hesitate to go, even if it’s just to talk to someone about your struggles.