Should your relationship professional be in a relationship?
Probably. But the real answer is it’s up to each couple.
Couples have a variety of options as it relates to selecting a resource or professional to help cultivate their relationship. From books, blogs, and relationship experts, it is a couple’s choice who or what they allow to shape/reshape the partnership. It’s not always easy to acknowledge, seek guidance and open up and be vulnerable to someone on the outside of the relationship.
The challenge comes in the beginning when a couple realizes the relationship could use some improvements. It’s one of the hardest things to do, admit things aren’t going the way we planned as a couple. From that point, deciding what to do next presents another tough choice. Do we suffer silently, point fingers or seek guidance from a professional? Whatever selection is made affects the future relationship either negatively or positively.
Our relationships matter. What we put into them, how we treat them and what happens when they don’t feel so great are all important. Researching and experimenting what other couples have utilized to make their relationship work should be on our agenda. But when it comes to finding the best solutions, couples should be very selective; this is our love life we’re talking about.
Whatever type of service we seek, we should confirm the professional is knowledgeable, confident and understands our situation. Every person and couple is different. It’s important to decide together, what type of relationship professional would be best suited for our specific issues.
My pastor always proclaims, when speaking of our marriage ministry, that the best person to work with couples who have challenges in their marriage is one who has also had relationship challenges. It makes sense. It’s easier to guide, coach and counsel someone on the areas we’ve personally experienced. A couple also benefits by sharing with someone who has been there and done that. I wouldn’t want a parenting professional who isn’t actually a parent guiding me on the proper way to raise children. But I would seek a relationship pro who understands the dynamics of a relationship.
The professional must be able to relate to the couple by being willing to share a little of their relationship life, when appropriate. It is helpful to hear how others have overcome the struggles we think we are the only ones facing. It is comforting to know that the person or couple we trust with our union is capable and equipped with the experience and training necessary. Questions to ponder include are they degreed or certified, are they in a relationship or marriage, and are they passionate about a career helping couples? Remember, you and your partner are the best judges as to what works for you specifically.
The instant you notice the union is in trouble, don’t be afraid to seek the resources and guidance needed to move you forward. The great news is that helping professionals come from various backgrounds and experiences, be sure to find the best choice for you.
BMWK, what are your requirements for a relationship professional?