Marriage Counseling

What to Expect at Marriage Counseling

What to expect during marriage therapy?  It heals relationships and is not a prizefight in which the therapist is the referee. When the therapist takes sides, marriage counseling becomes a waste of your time.  The therapist asks each person three questions:

a)  Do you want to improve your relationship?

b)  Do you want to hold it together until you can safely leave each other?

c)  Do you want to have a “good” divorce?

The choice right now decides what to expect at marriage therapy.  It’s hard to know what to expect at marriage counseling when there is a lot of uncertainty.  Waffling is normal but is not helpful in therapy.  Choices made now make clear how to solve the problems that kept your relationship in a state of war.    

Once you make a decision, your therapist will hold you to your commitment to what you chose.  Unclear decisions become secrets that destroy trust.  It’s not easy to choose and to follow through with it but it is also the beginning of a new relationship.

“Short-term pain, long-term gain”  It seems easier to not make decisions because they seem too final.  Avoiding short-term pain is a short-term solution.  The pain drags on and becomes a long-term relationship quagmire.  Cut your losses by making hard decisions.  Improve your relationship by trusting a therapist will limit acrimony and moving you toward healing.  

Can you hold on long enough to split up?  Sometimes, it causes long-term bitterness without having anything to show for it.  Finally, divorces are never good but can last indefinitely.  

The goal is to have no one win.  I’d like everyone to choose “a” but I’d be satisfied if both people make the same choice.  Agreement on “b” or “c” choice may lead to choosing “a” because the fight is over and no one is the undisputed champion.  I try to hide it but in my heart, I want everyone to choose “a.”  I’ve studied marriage and family therapy for years and always try to do what’s best for everyone.   Here is the list of therapies that I do to help couples. 

I try to give everyone choices, but in the end, I just wish that everyone would choose “a.”