by Tiffany Sanders, Ph.D
Couples too often wait until their relationship is on the verge of a break-up or when one partner is “done” before they decide to attend couples counseling. Many couples hesitate to go because they don’t want to be told what to do in their relationship, and often they believe they can fix the problems on their own. However, relationships are hard work and a licensed counselor can help couples weather a storm that is threatening their union. Here are 7 reasons to attend couples counseling to revitalize, save or improve your relationship.
1) Enhance communication
Unreliable strategies such as the “silent treatment,” shouting or using disrespectful words can damage a relationship. In couples counseling, discover effective, healthy communication strategies to ensure that both of your wants, needs and frustrations are heard in a respectful manner, while learning how to create a relationship that encourages sharing, talking and connecting.
2) Increase intimacy
Ignoring you partners pleas for intimacy and/or sex can lead to a lack of connectedness, foster feelings of insecurity and rejections, and increase the likelihood of infidelity. Couples counseling can not only help you discover your partner’s language of love, but it can also provide you with tips and strategies to keep the spice in the relationship.
3) Work through infidelity
Relationships can recover and be saved when rocked by infidelity. In couples counseling, learn what factors contributed to infidelity, safeguard your relationship from future occurrences of infidelity, and learn ways to forgive, trust and to be trusted.
4) Let go of the past
Baggage from past issues of abandonment, trust or lack of follow through can fracture a relationship, and your partner may be unaware you are still stewing over those issues from the past! In couples counseling learn to become unstuck, find ways to move on, forgive and focus on your happiness and the future.
5) When you think you might be happier with someone else
If you have been with your partner for many years, things can become boring. Attention from a past lover or coworker has you wondering if you could be happier with someone else. However, the grass is not always greener on the other side. In couples counseling learn how to reconnect with your partner and regain the excitement to create a lasting relationship.
6) Disagreements in raising childrenIf you have been with your partner for many years, things can become boring. Attention from a past lover or coworker has you wondering if you could be happier with someone else. However, the grass is not always greener on the other side. In couples counseling learn how to reconnect with your partner and regain the excitement to create a lasting relationship.
The way you parent, discipline, and nurture your children anger or frustrate your partner. Couples counseling can help you agree upon effective strategies to raise your children and reduce inconsistencies in parenting which can breed children who misbehave.
7) Money management
He loves new gadgets and electronics, recklessly spends money, and pays the bills late while you are frugal, saving money for a rainy day, purchase of a home and retirement. Working with a counselor can get at the root of the financial problem or reckless spending, and outline financial goals for the family to save and to enjoy the pleasures of life.
Have you ever been to couples counseling? What was your experience?
Tiffany D. Sanders, PhD, is a relationship expert, licensed psychologist, owner of Sanders & Associates, a group counseling practice based in Naperville, IL, and author of the book My Purpose is For Real: 7 Simple Steps to Get Back on Track to Achieve Your Dreams