Signs That Couple Counseling Is A Good Idea
Updated May 12, 2021
Medically Reviewed By: Whitney White, MS. CMHC, NCC., LPC
It's sporadic outside of movies for a relationship to stand the test of time without suffering any problems whatsoever. It's perfectly normal to go through some troubled times when it seems like splitting up is the better option.
For as much as we'd like for it to be otherwise, the reality is the movies, and fairy tales are not indicative of real life. Relationship struggles are a part of life. All couples go through rough patches or experience tough times, and that's OK. Going through hardship doesn't have to be the end of a relationship; as a matter of fact, many couples manage to bounce back from challenges and become a stronger union as a result. There is nothing wrong with recognizing that you need help as a couple, so long as both parties are willing to seek and accept said help proactively.
When this happens, one of the best avenues to pursue is couple counseling conducted by a licensed therapist specializing in relationship problems. If any of the below points apply to your relationship, considering a visit to one of these may be exactly what you need to live more happily.
You're Fighting All The Time
We should be clear about this: it's normal to get into arguments, which is nothing to be ashamed of. Different people have different expectations, and disagreeing on matters such as finances and children is only natural. When this becomes constant, though, meaning that you're afraid to have real conversations about important things to you both, something is certainly going wrong. A relationship adviser can help you uncover the roots of aggression, and more importantly, teach you ways of keeping your discussions constructive. It is entirely possible to hold divergent opinions without resorting to name-calling, yelling, or the silent treatment.
If you find yourself constantly fighting with your significant other, then this is often indicative of a larger issue at hand. Make no mistake: fights happen, disagreements happen, and even the best of couples don't always see eye to eye. However, when you and your partner argue more than you have good times, then that means it's time to step back and take a closer look at what you're arguing about. Sometimes, certain arguments are merely symptoms of a more insidious problem that lies underneath. This is an area where couple counseling can prove to be of value.
You Pretend That Everything Is Going Well
While fighting is bad, feeling that you can't complain about your partner's behavior can be even worse. It goes without saying that open communication is vitally important to the health of any relationship. If certain things are continually being ignored and swept under the carpet even when you feel that you can legitimately be upset about them, counseling is almost certain to become necessary sooner or later. You may not wish to think about it, but some of the goodwill and trust between you are eroded every time this happens. Walking on eggshells is never a good solution for the long term.
There is great danger in pretending that all is well, even in the face of the genuine issue. The fact of the matter is that no couple is perfect. People love to glamourize partners who seemingly have it all in this day and age, but you never know what's happening behind closed doors. The grass is not always greener on the other side, and pretending like everything is going well when it's not is a recipe for disaster. For you and your partner to survive as a couple, you need to get real. You need to be honest with one another and truly evaluate the state of your relationship and various ways to improve. This is an area where couple counseling can be of help.
Your Partner Refuses To Discuss The Idea Of Couple Counseling
Being together is sometimes easier than others but committing to a partner also means being willing to work hard to get through the rough patches. It may be frightening to air your dirty laundry in front of a stranger, even one who's qualified to help you and sworn to confidentiality, but there comes the point where this can't be put off any longer. If your lover refuses even to consider going to counseling, this probably means that they feel threatened about your relationship or unwilling to make an effort. Ironically, not wanting to go probably means that you're in real need of help.
It's important to understand that refusal to discuss the idea of couples counseling is not good. Even if your partner has reservations, concerns, or anxiety about working with a professional, at the very least, they ought to be willing to sit down and discuss matters with you. This shows that they care about your relationship. As previously stated, if your partner is adamantly and truly against couple counseling, then this is truly a sign of a grave issue. Whether or not you can persuade your partner could very well determine whether or not your relationship succeeds or fails. Remember, couples therapy can only work if both you and your significant other are open to it.
You're Facing A Major Life Change
Getting married, moving in together, starting a family - these are just some of the watershed moments a relationship can go through. Many couples have made the mistake of thinking that they're ready for what comes next, only to realize later that their expectations and priorities were not identical. A counselor can help you to clear the air and understand just what is most important to each of you.
Believe it or not, even the most exciting life changes can shake things up. As human beings, we tend to adapt to routines and set schedules. This is all well and good, but the ability to adapt to change is also very critical. If you and your significant other are having a tough time dealing with a new stage of life or feel as though this is impacting your relationship, it might be a good idea to look into couples therapy. A counselor can look at your situation from a professional, unbiased perspective and truly offer meaningful insight that can change your life.
You're Not Matching Up Sexually
Different people have different libidos and erotic desires. All couples aren't equally able to discuss their sexuality, meaning that this kind of issue can be left unaddressed for years. In some cases, this can even lead to infidelity or breakups. Numerous relationship counselors specialize in helping people talk through whatever difficulties they may be facing in the bedroom, which is often necessary to find common ground.
If you and your partner struggle with sex or intimacy, this can be tough and challenging. You both may question why this is happening or feel as though you are at fault for this. In actuality, many reasons and factors can contribute to couples who struggle with sexual and intimate compatibility. Instead of trying to figure these out by yourselves, being willing to sit down with a counselor can make a difference and be significantly helpful.
When it comes to sexual and intimate patterns, it's natural for you and your partner to have concerns or anxiety about sharing personal details with a stranger. However, it's important to remember that your counselor is not there to judge you or poke fun at yours. A counselor is a professional who specializes in helping people. It may be difficult to talk about issues of this nature in the beginning, but in the long run, it will pay off greatly. It's better to talk about these things now and get them out of the way than to keep struggling with sexual or intimate matters and have your relationship deteriorate.
Important Things To Remember
As you prepare for couple counseling and take that big leap, there are some things that you should remember. First and foremost, success from couple counseling does not happen overnight. It takes time, hard work, consistency, and your partner being willing to evaluate your behavior. Sometimes you both will hear feedback from your counselor, which doesn't necessarily please you, but that's part of the process. The counselor is there to help you improve your relationship, not simply tell you what you want to hear.
Another thing to remember is that couples counseling is not a guarantee that your relationship will improve. Even the best counselor in the world can only do so much if you and your partner are unwilling to put in the work. Putting in the work isn't always easy; this can involve making certain lifestyle changes, changing the way you communicate, and otherwise bettering yourselves as individuals. Sometimes people in relationships grow apart, and the best way to improve a partnership is to end it. This may or may not be the case for you and your significant other. In all honesty, many factors determine the outcome of couples therapy. However, it always begins and ends with you and your partner.
At the end of the day, we all face challenges and tough times, and that's OK. What defines us is not how many times we fall but how many times we can get back up and continue pushing no matter what. Anything can be accomplished or overcome if you are determined and willing to make it happen.
One of the best ways to succeed in the face of challenges or struggles is to have a great support system in your corner. This is where Regain comes into play. Here at Regain, we have an amazing team of counselors who would be thrilled to work with you, regardless of your relationship status or situation. We recognize that everyone faces challenges regardless of who they are or where they come from. We also recognize that nobody deserves to feel as though they are alone and without anyone to turn to.
You can contact Regain at any time simply by clicking here.
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