Have you ever thought about going on a couples counseling retreat with your partner? You've probably gone on vacations together, and you may have had great fun. You may have also had some vacations that weren't so great after your relationship started to exhibit some problems. And now, you may be in counseling to work on your marriage. But did you know that combining the two can be a great way to save your marriage and have a great time while you're doing it?
Why A Couples Counseling Retreat?
When you and your partner go to couple counseling, you're working on your relationship by talking to each other and your therapist. When you leave the office and go back to your regular lives, you may forget what you discussed until the next session comes around. You find yourself in a pattern, and even though you're trying to work on things, it just doesn't seem to be working out. With a couples counseling retreat, you don't have to worry about that because you're always in the counseling.
A retreat could be just a few days, or it could be a week or longer. It's all about you and how much time you have to commit. In addition, these retreats are happening all over. When you go to one, you're going to be fully immersed in a whole lot of fun and none of the stress that you normally have when you're going about your normal daily life. Instead of leaving a counseling session and having to deal with problems with the kids or figuring out a dinner plan, you can walk out of the session and sit down and talk to each other. You can relax together and not worry about anything.
What It Means
When you go on these types of retreats, you're going to be with other couples who are experiencing some problems as well. That means you're all going to have the chance to talk to each other and figure out what's going on in each of your relationships and how you can all help each other. You and your partner are also going to have some alone time, without kids, work, or anything else to distract you from each other. It's going to be just like getting into that honeymoon phase again.
Because you're going to have uninterrupted time to work on what your therapist is covering with you, the lessons you learn will be better instilled in your mind. You'll also find that you and your partner are communicating more because you're away from all the stress, which can do wonders for your relationship on its own. With attendance to these retreats, you're going to be setting yourself up for a much better relationship and a whole lot of fun, too, which is definitely what you may need in your marriage.
A marriage retreat is an intensive counseling opportunity for couples. They are generally scheduled to last for three days. The couple must feel comfortable with their counselor. Some retreats concentrate on counseling sessions with a counselor in individualized couples therapy, and some retreats also include group sessions. Couples may have the opportunity to participate in exercises and activities designed to strengthen the bond between them.
Not every couple has to be on the brink of divorce before they consider attending a couples retreat. There is much to be learned if you are beginning a relationship together or have been a couple for a long time. It is not a requirement for you to be experiencing severe problems in your relationship, either. A retreat is a perfect time for re-establishing goals and renewing your commitment to each other. You can give all your attention to one another without having children, jobs, housework, and financial worries get in the way.
Most couples who take part in a retreat have been seeing a counselor for some time, and the counselor has identified that the couple is experiencing some distress. A retreat gives a couple of time together without the distraction of work and children, and other responsibilities. It is an opportunity to reconnect with each other and take part in intense counseling that otherwise would not be possible in a clinic setting where the couple is seen weekly or biweekly. According to Marriage Rescue, "Marriage retreats have proven to be between 70% and 90% effective therapy." This appears when the couple is sincerely motivated to find harmony together and fully committed to the relationship.
However, some couples wait too long to seek help to repair their marriage. Many couples live in a strained marriage for years before one of them broaches the subject of marriage counseling. The longer the wait, the deeper the resentments, and the more difficult it is to reach effective communication without accusations.
The other essential item is that both parties have to recognize their problems and define them. Does one partner bottle their frustrations and refuse to talk about differences of opinion? Is one of the partners unwilling to forgive? Has intimacy died? Has mutual respect disappeared? Each person has to admit to their contribution of negativity or lack of romance within the marriage. It does no good to blame one another without accepting the part each played in causing the fracture of the marriage and the unhappiness they feel. They then have to be willing to seek help - not just one partner, but both. Each person in the marriage has to want to reconcile and live peaceably together. They want to reconnect.
How to Deal with Differences
A counselor can facilitate trust between the couple by insisting on honesty and encouraging them to verbalize their discontent. The fear of being criticized for how they feel is eliminated. The couple will learn that they can be friends even though they have differences of opinion. If they work together to solve their issues, their bond together will be stronger.
The couple will learn to accept that differences do not always lead to divorce. They will learn to respect each other's opinions, likes, dislikes, hopes, and quirks. They will learn to appreciate what makes each of them unique.
Most counselors believe that if a couple was attracted to each other at the beginning of their relationship, that attraction could be rekindled, as long as things have not become violent. How long the couple has been disconnected or has been at odds with each other is less important. What matters most is that the couple values the relationship, and they want to find solutions that will be acceptable to both of them.
It is very difficult when a couple is experiencing troubling issues in their relationship. They often think a vacation could be beneficial. However, because they have no one to give them the tools to communicate more effectively, the vacation is often ruined by arguments erupting. The negative feelings that they had at home follow them on vacation.
A couple's retreat is different. It is designed to help each person learn to talk to each other without having arguments that interfere with their understanding. A counselor helps alleviate this problem and facilitates effective communication to promote intimacy. The retreat also provides an atmosphere that will seem like a vacation. There will be time for relaxation and fun activities, as well as time for therapy sessions. The primary goal of a couple's retreat is to re-establish companionship and mutual respect for one another.
If you and your partner are interested in therapy or if you're looking for more information on couples retreats, you can check out ReGain.us to make sure that you're getting exactly what you need. You'll be able to work on your relationship in a comfortable environment while at the retreat and after you return home. Regain uses therapists that are available online whenever you need them. That means no more driving to an office for the appointment or sitting in a room where you're not comfortable talking to a stranger. You can stay in your own home and talk about anything and everything you want with a therapist right on the Internet-connected device in front of you.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Do Marriage Retreats Work?
Marriage retreats really work when done properly. Studies show that marriage retreats are a great way to restore couples in crisis and bring their relationship back to life. Research also shows that undertaking intensive retreats like marriage counseling retreats positively impact 70 percent of retreats couples. Such an intensive retreat goes a long way to help couples experiencing physical, emotional, or any form of abuse. Going on an intensive retreat that includes marriage counseling is one way to be more intentional and strategic about growing and improving your relationship with your partner. Couples retreats, otherwise known as marriage retreats, or marriage counseling retreats, are exclusive vacations for couples that include special packages like counseling sessions and retreats.
Different relationship experts offer these intensive retreats for couples throughout America. There's also a private intensive couple retreat tailored towards a couple's unique situation and needs. During marriage counseling retreats, you get to learn about yourself and your spouse on a much deeper level, enhance your relationship, deepen your emotional connection to your partner, improve your overall sense of value and respect for each other and enjoy yourselves away from the hustle and bustle of life. You are having a whale of a time with your partner away from your kids' disturbances. You won't have to think about cooking dinner. These marriage retreats are better options than crap TV programs you watch every night to unwind and seek relief from the day's stress.
Couples retreats are not only for married people or those in a common-law marriage. You don't be legally married before you can go on a retreat. What you need is commitment and love is each other, for your future and to your relationship.
What do you do on a couples retreat?
A couples retreat plays host to lectures, discussions, role-plays, exercises, and games. Retreat couples can combine these activities with a romantic vacation experience as well. During the warm-up segment of your retreat, your facilitator will garner information about your marriage or relationship via a structured interview. Your facilitator may also help you to identify and clarify your couples retreat goal.
Marriage counseling retreats can last a day or two. You can find marriage retreats in different group sizes. The marriage counseling group size varies from large groups of 30 to 50 participants to private couples retreat tailored for intensive couples. Marriage counseling retreats offer couples a huge chance to get their relationship back on track while they take a romantic getaway away from everyday stress.
Whether a day retreat or one that lasts for a couple of days, a marriage intensive retreat usually occurs in a serene, comfortable, and attractive place. This kind of atmosphere enables retreats couples to get personalized attention while reordering and rejuvenating their relationship. You can have a quick weekend getaway on a tropical island or near a winery. If you are considering a day retreat, Valentine's day will be a great choice.
During day retreat, intensive couples can do the following things: feast on delicious foods together, go on a walk together, practice mindful eating as you enjoy a delicious dinner you create together, pen down ten things you admire in each other, and then go out to launch/dinner and share them over your favorite dessert visit a gallery/museum and learn something new, watch sunrise/sunset together, have an evening of milk and cookies by candlelight.
At day retreat, you and your spouse/partner can have a romantic movie night, take a moment and sway to the music, go to a flea market or thrift store and give each other $5 to buy the best present for the other, have breakfast in bed (morning or night), take the evening and recall about wonderful moments like your first date, first kiss, etc. You can use all these ideas to make your day retreat a great blast.
What is the success rate of couples counseling?
New approaches to marriage counseling like the Gottman Approach and Emotion-Focused Therapy, or EFT, is achieving tremendous results. For example, Emotion-Focused Therapy has a 75% success rate, according to the American Psychological Association. The American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists reports an overall success rate of 98%. The high success rate of couples therapy retreats contributes to a steady decline in the divorce rate in the United States. Today, counseling can indeed save and strengthen a marriage.
Intensive couples that opt for the Gottman therapy retreat are called "Gottman couples." The Gottman method is a science-backed approach that seeks to help intensive couples share admiration and fondness, build love maps, manage conflicts, build trust and commitment, cultivate positive perspective ( seeing your spouse as a friend, not as an enemy), make dreams come true and turn towards each other as opposed to turning away from each other.
Gottman couples could be emotionally distanced couples on the verge of separation. If you opt for the Gottman method, the first thing that your therapist will do is conduct a thorough relationship assessment before moving on to therapeutic interventions. Gottman certified therapists would usually have the intensive couples complete the Gottman Relationship Checkup. This is an online questionnaire that each intensive couple fills out to tell the couple's therapist about their experience in the relationship. It’s quite in-depth (over 400 questions) and takes 1-2 hours to complete.
After completing the Gottman relationship assessment, your therapist will help you decide how often to come to therapy and how long your sessions will be. Typically for Gottman couples, sessions are 50 or 80 minutes. Through their research, the Gottmans have found that couples who consistently attend couples therapy every week for at least the first 4-6 sessions see the best outcomes instead of having less frequent sessions. So, you can have your Gottman retreat as a day retreat a couple of times. Gottman marriage and couples therapy has helped to salvage many relationships tettering on the brink of collapse.
What to expect from couples counseling?
There are many things to expect from an ideal marriage counseling retreat. Counseling couples should expect to learn powerful skills that will help them solidify and improve their relationship, constructively resolve their conflicts and deepen their intimacy. There are many retreat options to choose from. What to expect from a retreat depends on the kind of retreat option you opt for. For example, in private couples retreat, marriage counseling and other activities are structured to address a particular problem, need, or situation. For example, counseling couples can choose couples retreats that focus on learning how to resolve conflicts, develop good communication skills, balance different personalities and traits, refuel relationships after an affair, rekindle sexual life, etc. So, counseling couples can expect a retreat that's customized for their specific situation or unique need.
If you love connecting with new people and you feel excited in a group retreat environment, you can go for couples retreats with up to ten people as counseling couples. However, working with other intensive couples may not be a good idea if you want something strictly for you and your partner. In a private couples retreat, private and sensitive matters are dealt with. Apart from exploring their relationship's depths or personality, intensive couples can also enjoy amazing recreational opportunities like fine dining options, intimate moments in the serene retreat destinations, different outdoor activities, etc. While a day retreat is also a great idea, especially for intensive couples who have busy schedules or cannot leave their children alone, they won't explore and enjoy all other attractions and events that the retreat destinations offer.
How much does a couples retreat cost?
Costs of couples retreat vary depending on your relationship situation, the location of couples retreat destination, expertise or experience level of the therapist, or whether you're making a group retreat or a private retreat, a day retreat, or a week-long retreat. The cost of a day retreat is lower than retreats last longer. The cost for a two-day private retreat is $2,900 per couple, the cost for a three-day private retreat is $3,900 per couple, and the cost for a longer retreat is an additional $1,300 for each day. The costs include both marriage counseling fees and fun activities. According to a national survey, marriage counseling costs vary from about $75 to $200 per hour. With a day retreat, counseling couples can full-blown counseling sessions without breaking the bank.
Opting for a day retreat is not only cost-effective but also ideal for partners whose careers, jobs, and the daily responsibility of taking care of their children cannot allow them to go on a longer trip. If you cannot make a couple of retreats but still want the help of a trained counselor, you and your partner can resort to a couples workshop. Couples' workshops can come in the following ways: singular classes, day-long workshops, and weekend-long workshops.