If you and your partner are experiencing chronic problems, or you're unhappy in the marriage, you could be perfect candidates for couples’ therapy. Plenty of couples explore counseling to overcome hurdles, and continue to work with a trained counselor even after the initial, immediate problems are solved. In fact, many of the strongest relationships are built on techniques and practices learned through engaged couples counseling.
If you’re like many other individuals, however, you may hesitate to bring the idea of getting help up to your partner. You’re not alone. It's common for us to get calls from the spouse who wants to come to counseling, but doesn't know how to get the other to buy in. Here’s how you can do it in a non-confrontational way.
A Guide to Talking About Couples’ Therapy with Your Partner
Oftentimes, no one in a relationship is entirely thrilled with the idea of going to couples’ counseling. After all, it usually suggests something isn’t going the way either individual had envisioned the relationship to go. But in order to have real, honest conversations about what’s happening and how it can be solved, you’ll need to let your guard down a little and tell your loved one how you’re feeling.
Explain How You Feel
To get your partner to see why therapy may be warranted, explain to them how the issue is making you feel and how it’s impacting your relationship. For example, if you’re experiencing a rough patch in which you’re fighting often, describe the toll it’s taking on you emotionally. Try to avoid blame, however; instead level with your partner and invite them to say how they feel about the issue, too.
Set Goals Together
Counseling doesn’t have to be viewed as a last-ditch effort to save a relationship. Instead, it can be seen as a solution for working through differences or preventing further issues from developing. You and your partner can decide on outcomes you hope to achieve through going to therapy, such as learning to disagree without erupting into major arguments.
Discuss the Benefits
Going to any type of counseling for the first time can seem daunting, but now is a good time to remind your partner of some advantages of seeking help. For one thing, you’ll be able to have a deeper understanding of each other—and of yourself. You may learn more effective communication strategies, which can result in a deeper connection. Oftentimes, couples who go to therapy rediscover their passion for one another and go on to have a healthier relationship overall.
If you’re ready to explore the benefits of going to couples’ therapy firsthand, allow Chuck Beardsley LCSW to help. Serving the Mountainside, NJ community, this experienced couples’ counselor welcomes couples who are seeking help in overcoming relationship challenges. He’ll help you develop solutions that work for you and your partner in reconnecting to work through differences in a constructive and loving way. Learn more about his approach to helping couples here or call (908) 274-3189 to set up an appointment.