There is a stigma in American society about seeking help—particularly for problems of an intimate nature. But the truth is, marital problems never go away by themselves; they get worse over time, because people keep using the same tools to solve them.
Marriage counseling breaks couples out of this rut. An unbiased professional, trained to deal with all sorts of relationship challenges, puts your issue(s) under a microscope, finds the roots, and teaches you to relate in a productive way.
After talking with each of you separately to understand what lies behind the surface problem, the counselor creates a plan of attack. It usually involves talk therapy in their office, along with hands-on practice at home. Every week you report back, and the plan is tweaked.
Most couples are ready to finish therapy in 2-5 months. In that time, they have seen enough progress and gained enough tools to continue on their own, maybe with a tune-up now and then.
Do we Have to be Considering Divorce to Call a Counselor?
Absolutely not. In fact, marriage counseling is most effective when started before the irritation becomes a crisis. Rebuilding your connection and the resulting intimacy is much easier when only slightly torn, not ripped in two.
What if it Doesn’t Work?
Sometimes it doesn’t. Maybe the couple waited too long, or one of the partners wasn’t willing to do their part. Other times, the therapist wasn’t the right fit. If that happens, try someone else! If you don’t see progress within a month, move on again. It can take time to pick someone with whom you both click.
Whether it works or not, most couples are glad they tried therapy before giving up. At least they knew they gave it a chance. Isn’t your union worth it?