There are many approaches a marriage counselor might take, but the right approach is the only one that will help you improve your relationship. While there are some therapists with great intentions, if they don’t have the right approach, your professional help may not be effective. The following are four approaches that make marriage counseling an effective tool for repairing relationships.
Helping the Couple Understand the Relationship
A good therapist should help the couple understand their relationship from an objective point of view. The couple should learn how to stop blaming each other, and instead focus on what is happening to their relationship during different processes that involve each other. After the therapist has had time to listen to and evaluate the couple, he or she may see a pattern that should be focused on.
For example, money might be the root issue for a couple, though they don’t realize it themselves. The therapist can point out that whenever the couple begins to argue, it started with a money issue and escalated to other things. This understanding can be eye-opening and beneficial to the rest of the process.
Modifying Inappropriate Behaviors
Besides the typical arguing that many couples experience from time to time, some experience inappropriate behaviors from their spouse. This includes economic, physical and psychological harm or abuse. A therapist will work to help the spouses deescalate a situation such as this if it is only mild. If the situation is severe, the therapist may refer the offending partner to a treatment program, such as for drug abuse, domestic violence or anger management.
Improving Communication Skills
Sometimes communication can be hard. People experience fear in telling their spouse something because they don’t want to disappoint the other. Others might want to avoid communication to avoid an argument. There are many reasons couples can’t or won’t communicate effectively, but with coaching by a therapist, those skills can be improved.
Some ways in which a therapist may coach the couple in communication include teaching how to supportively listen and understand the other. He or she may provide each partner with tools to help them decide if a certain form of communication will help a situation or increase conflict.
Building on Strengths
Most marriages have some strengths, even if they are hard to see amidst the current problems. A therapist can help the couple build on those strengths, as well as pointing out the strengths in each other. Building this resiliency is especially important as the therapist sends the couple out into the world to deal with things on their own.
Learning More About Marriage Counseling
If you feel your marriage could use a boost, counseling could be your best option. There are many approaches that make marriage counseling effective, so contact a therapist, like a couples therapist in Palatine, IL, today to learn more.
Thank you to the experts at Lotus Wellness Center, for their contributions to counseling and therapy.