How You And Your Partner Can Benefit From The Marriage Counselor

Medically reviewed by Majesty Purvis, LCMHC
Updated May 6, 2024by Regain Editorial Team

Counseling from a marriage counselor can be useful for many couples that feel they are struggling in their marriage. There can be many reasons couples may feel that they need to receive marriage counseling. For example, people may change, children may come into the picture, and major stressors like losing a job may all impact a couple's relationship. Although some couples may feel embarrassed to speak with a counselor, the marriage counselor can be there to provide a safe and judgment-free environment. Couple’s therapy can greatly reduce the chance that a couple joins the many who have divorced or have unhealthy marriages. Marriage counseling can be completed in person or online.

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Are you and your partner interested in online marriage therapy?

The marriage counselor is there to help

There are numerous benefits couples can receive from counseling. The marriage counselor, or marriage and family therapist, can help couples develop good communication skills and other tools that can help the couple both immediately and when issues arise in the future. Couples that receive counseling can greatly increase the chance that they will stay together in the future. This can especially be the case when couples choose to see a counselor early in their relationship and before any serious issues arise.

The important thing can be to recognize that the counselor is most likely going to push you. They may require you to go through exercises and do different things in your relationship that may make you feel uncomfortable. They may make you feel annoyed or frustrated as you're working on your relationship as well. You should know that the counselor may always be there to help, and they may always do what they can to keep making your relationship better and improve your mental health. Yes, you may feel unhappy with them at times, but there can be some great things that you can experience from your counseling if you let them help.

You may need to open up

When it comes to marriage counseling, you're likely going to need to open up and be completely honest and vulnerable. There is generally nothing that’s off-limits with this type of counseling. There may be a lot of things you'll need to talk about, but if you're not completely open and honest, you may not see the changes that you and your partner want. Please make sure you're willing and able to be completely open with your partner and the marriage and family therapist, or you may not make the progress you’re hoping for.

You may need to make permanent changes

To make any kind of difference in your relationship, you and your partner may need to be willing to make changes to the way that you do things. You may need to make minor changes, or you may need to make more major ones. It can all depend on what's going on in your relationship at the moment. The most important thing can be that you're open to whatever your counselor or your partner might want from you.

What to expect from a counseling session

Within a counseling session, the marriage counselor is generally not there to judge whether a couple should stay together. The counselor usually aims to help couples work through issues that may be difficult to address without the help of a counselor present. The marriage counselor will not normally choose sides and typically only seeks to moderate the conversation between the partners. A counselor may also request that they meet one-on-one with each partner, and then with both partners together, to get a fuller picture of the relationship and its current issues.

Your counselor will likely give you tasks and exercises to do outside of your sessions as well. These may include things like giving each other compliments, disagreeing healthily, practicing different techniques, and more. You may be given different types of homework depending on the different issues that you and your partner are experiencing. You may also be given things to think about so that you can come back to your next session with ideas of things that you want to talk with your partner about or get advice about.

It can be important to note that your counselor is generally trying to bring you and your partner together, and that means they are not normally going to take sides in arguments or help you prove your partner wrong. They may also focus on healthy ways that you can make changes to improve your relationship. That may require you and your partner to both work hard and to make sure that you're not trying to turn your counselor on your partner or trying to blame anything on one party or the other. 

Marital counseling can be for everyone

Many couples feel that they need to have severe problems to visit a counselor. However, if couples wait until there are already deep-seated issues, it may be too late to visit a counselor. Couples in a marriage should generally aim to be proactive about counseling, rather than reactive. A marriage counselor can help couples maintain a healthy relationship or address stressors that may be unresolved. When one partner goes through a traumatic event, individual counseling can greatly help. However, it may be beneficial for both partners to discuss events, particularly if these events have impacted both partners.

Talking to a counselor can ensure that your relationship continues to grow. There's generally no reason that you should allow your relationship to remain just the way it is because everything is “just fine.” Instead, you might take the initiative and try to make your relationship something special. You might be surprised at just what you and your partner can achieve if you put your minds to it and work at it. There doesn't necessarily need to be a lot of hard work involved, just a lot of attention and care.

How to get started with marriage counseling

While many couples may prefer to meet face-to-face with a counselor, it is not necessarily guaranteed that the best counselor is located in your area. If you live in a rural area or have been hopelessly searching for a counselor, trying online marital counseling may be in your best interest. Online counseling can enable couples to choose from a wider variety of counselors, find someone that both individuals feel comfortable with, and schedule sessions outside of typical office hours if needed. 

According to this study, there is generally no difference in efficacy between online couples therapy and traditional in-office couples and family therapy. No matter which option you choose, you may rest assured that you’re getting high-quality help from a licensed professional.

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Are you and your partner interested in online marriage therapy?

Takeaway

Marriage counseling can be beneficial to anyone who is married, whether they are currently experiencing issues or not. Attending sessions with the marriage counselor both of you feel comfortable with can empower you to tackle difficulties head-on, grow closer, and improve your overall relationship health. Marriage counseling can also help you open up and improve communication with your partner. To connect with a licensed marriage and family therapist, you can join an online therapy platform or seek out a professional in your local area.

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