What To Expect During Divorce Counseling And Are There Benefits?

By Ashley Brown|Updated June 21, 2022
CheckedMedically Reviewed By Cessel Boyd-Lewis, LCMHC

All About Divorce Counseling

People often think about going to couples counseling when they are trying to save a marriage. However, if you are making the decision to divorce or have already decided, then you may also want to visit with a couples counselor to participate in divorce counseling.

Many emotions may come up when you are going through a divorce, and you will likely need support to get through the painful process.

Have you heard of divorce counseling? Many divorcing couples choose to use this resource to help them transition through divorce. It is a great tool to help people deal with stressful and life-changing events or for people who have already started families and need help figuring out how to co-parent after the divorce.

Keep reading to learn more about what to expect during divorce and from divorce counseling, if you seek out this helpful service.

What To Expect During The Process Of Divorce

Divorce Can Leave You Feeling Lost
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From the start of the divorce process to the end, you’ll have to deal with not only the tangible aspects of the separation, but the emotional components as well. You may or may not feel pressure to open up to those around you. Some people might try to pry and find out the details of your divorce, whether or not you’re comfortable with it. Emotions can run high during the divorce process and many people going through a divorce face a grieving process that consists of five stages: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance.

For some, getting through these stages of divorce or grief can be challenging, and it can be hard to figure out exactly how you will move on with your life. In these cases, you might seek divorce counseling. Sometimes, when both parties are struggling, they will enter counseling together and mutually work through the process.

What To Expect From Divorce Counseling

Many people wonder what to expect when they enter any form of counseling, including divorce counseling. Divorce counseling is a short-term kind of counseling where you and your current spousal partner sit down and work through any concerns related to your personal divorce process. During your first session, you can expect that a counselor will ask you questions to get an idea as to what they can help you and your current spousal partner with. For example, a divorce counselor might help you work through disagreements or communication disparities. You will get to decide how long you attend divorce counseling based on your needs and when you feel as though you’ve gotten what you need out of the experience.

If you’re interested in divorce counseling, there are a variety of ways to go about it. If it fits your lifestyle and schedule, you can even meet with a therapist online. Therapy online may be a good option for busy couples who live in remote areas or struggle to commute but still need to make time to address issues in their relationship.

Pre- and Post-Divorce Counseling

Pre-divorce counseling is divorce counseling that’s sought out by couples who are preparing for divorce, whereas post-divorce counseling refers to divorce counseling for former couples who are already divorced. After a divorce, you and your former spouse may still have concerns to work through. In any form of divorce counseling, your counselor will not make any decisions for you but guide and help you and the person you seek therapy with come to your own conclusions. Pre-divorce counseling and post-divorce counseling are safe spaces to work through issues in a respectful manner with a professional present to help you through any stumbling blocks.

Signs You Need Divorce Counseling

Divorce counseling can benefit a wide variety of people in a wide variety of circumstances during the difficult time. However, there are some things to look out for that can indicate divorce counseling as a beneficial option for you. Here are some potential signs that you need divorce counseling:

  • Frequent or volatile arguments
  • Difficulty coming to an agreement about important issues related to the separation, such as those related to finances or childcare
  • Communication disparities
  • Worries about how the divorce may affect your kids or others around you
  • Questions about how to navigate specific situations or external conversations related to the divorce

While these are all appropriate reasons to seek the support of a mental health professional, this is by no means an extensive list. If you and your partner feel that you may benefit from the help of a licensed professional counselor during the difficult time of the divorce process, you should absolutely seek divorce counseling which helps couples through the ways divorce can change you. You can also seek individual or couples counseling during a divorce. Remember that if you’re going through a divorce, you are not alone.

When Should You End An Abusive Marriage?

There are circumstances where it’s crucial to end a marriage. One of those is when a partner is abusive. In these circumstances of domestic violence, it may not be healthy to seek divorce counseling. It’s better to find a therapist for yourself who can guide you safely through the divorce process. Whether you work with a counselor or mental health professional in private practice or in online therapy, you need to seek support. Your mental health matters and you don’t need to be in your abuser’s presence for divorce counseling. It’s okay to see a marriage and family therapist for yourself. As a result of being in an abusive marriage, you may feel anxious about leaving. Your anxiety could prevent you from leaving. “Anxiety depression” may happen after you’ve ruminated over, leaving your partner. It’s understandable to overthink things when you want to leave an abusive partner. Remember that there’s hope. A family therapist will have insight into the complications of an abusive marriage. However, divorce counseling should be a process where both partners respect each other. When you’re in an abusive marriage, your safety is a priority. Your long term health is crucial, particularly if there are children involved. You can find a therapist who offers individual treatment rather than seeking divorce counseling.

Love Yourself Enough to Get Divorced

Divorce can be a lengthy process, but it’s worth it if you’re not happy. You may be afraid to leave the marriage because there was intimacy involved. You may be used to regular sex life. Perhaps having that sexual intimacy makes you feel good about yourself. It’s crucial to remember that you don’t have to base your self esteem on your sexual relationship with your spouse. It’s time to work on loving yourself. In your divorce, you will find clarity and a way to love yourself.

Face Complex Emotions 

In divorce counseling, you will discuss positive and negative emotions. A skilled divorce counselor will help you, and your spouse looks at things in a balanced way during the difficult time. There are good things that come out of getting divorced sometimes. A therapist will help you, and your spouse sees what positive things can come out of separating. There is such a thing as a good divorce and it’s possible to have a good divorce. That’s one of the goals of divorce counseling. A family therapist understands the complexity of marital relationships during a difficult time. You and your spouse can discuss these issues with a family therapist online who does divorce counseling.

Starting Over After Divorce

One thing that keeps people from pursuing divorce counseling is the idea of starting over. A divorce counselor understands that it can be hard to imagine yourself starting anew. When children are involved, you may worry about how they will handle the divorce. A divorce counselor can support you in helping your children cope with the transition. You may benefit from pursuing online counseling to help you learn to start over. An online therapist skilled in divorce counseling will support you in developing the courage to start over. It’s natural to feel afraid of getting divorced. When you pursue therapy online with your spouse in divorce counseling, you will begin the process of seeing yourself as separate from them. They are mental health professionals who specialize in therapy, divorce, and marriage related concerns.

A divorce counselor may provide therapy online or in your local area. You can also consider online counseling as a viable option and find a divorce counselor who is used to working with clients in therapy online. When you’re a licensed therapist, you can list your practice online. Therapists who provide in-person counseling may advertise on the Internet Whether you and your spouse want to meet with a therapist online or in your local area, there are many options for divorce counseling.

Seeking Help Through The Divorce Process

counseling, counselor, divorce

Divorce Can Leave You Feeling Lost

When you are ready to seek help, you owe it to yourself to see what is out there. Mediation and cooperation are parts of the process that are essential, and will also help transition your newfound roles into something everyone can live with. With the proper therapy, you can get along without having to fight in court and without upsetting your kids and yourself. When you learn how to talk to each other and process your feelings, you can co-exist peacefully and move forward.

If you need a helping hand with this, you can trust ReGain. They have licensed counselors that are ready and willing to help you. It is an online service, meaning you can talk to a counselor from your couch, workplace, or wherever you feel comfortable. There is a lot more variety and versatility present when it comes to online therapy, compared to in-person therapy. Below are some reviews of ReGain counselors, from people who sought out divorce counseling.

Counselor Reviews

“Dr. Anstadt is amazing. I appreciate him always reaching out to make sure things are going smoothly in between our sessions. He follows up and genuinely cares about my situation. I would recommend Dr. Anstadt to anyone who is seeking insight on co-parenting and new relationships after divorce. Thank you for everything!”

“Christina was very helpful when I told her I left my spouse. I wasn’t sure what I wanted, a divorce or reconciliation. She helped me start processing where I was, to where do I see myself, to what do I want, to how do I see myself getting obtaining these goals. She did not influence any of my decisions but guided me with thought-provoking questions. Throughout our short sessions, she continued to reassure me that she or someone else would always be there for me. Thank you, Christina, for your professionalism, your guidance, and your compassion to help others. I look forward to continuing my therapy sessions with you, as my goals are not yet met.”

Conclusion

Divorce counseling offers many benefits for any person or former couple going through a divorce. It can help two people work through a difficult situation, with a neutral third party guiding them through the process. It can help any individual who may be struggling with the emotional effects of this change. Divorce counselors can help people through discussion, teaching coping skills, improving self-care, guiding in the development of a new life plan, and much more.

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