Making the decision to seek marriage counseling is often a challenging process. Fear kicks in with the uncertainty of outcome, losing control of self and partner, disclosing your personal feelings, and even admitting there is a problem. These fears are common but do not have to stop you from getting help.
In my experience, couples enter counseling with fear as the underlying culprit. Fear can hinder communication, clouds our perception of issues, keeps us in a protective stance of defense. These reactions prevent us from feeling heard and appreciated and certainly prevent us from hearing our partner. They also obstruct change and lock us into negative cycles that stifle the relationship and increase overall frustration. And communication is one of the most important factors in maintaining a healthy relationship.
The time spent in marriage counseling should be a safe place for each of you to explore the issues, find common ground, recognize the negative patterns, and seek solutions. Marriage counseling is not about blaming or changing your partner but learning to be accountable for your own growth while, at the same time, reconnecting to the common values you share and to what is working in the relationship. You each have strengths and differences that can, and should, enrich your relationship.
Marriage counseling can help you to see how each of you contribute to the issues and how each of you can be part of the solution. Therapy should be solution-focused and not just problem oriented. We focus on specific actions each person can take to improve communication and become more fulfilled in the relationship.
We too often lose sight of what we love and appreciate about our partner and it is alright to say we need help. No relationship is perfect. However, achieving a vibrant, loving and mutually respectful relationship requires attention and dedication.
“Love recognizes no barriers. It jumps hurdles, leaps fences, penetrates walls to arrive at its destination full of hope.”
– Maya Angelou
Do not let fear stop you from improving your relationship and quality of life. Marriage counseling can help you gain a new perspective and thus a new opportunity for change and growth together.
What to Expect in Marriage Counseling
Here are a few things to expect in marriage counseling:
- A safe and empathetic environment to share feelings and issues
- Returning to the basics of appreciation and gratitude
- Temporary feelings of vulnerability as issues are discussed
- Learning skills to be supportive during this process
- Improved ability to communicate and listen to one another
- Understanding core emotions and how to communicate one’s needs
- Personal growth by being accountable and responsible for yourself and your own happiness
- Increased understanding of negative cycles that keep you stuck and ways you can make lasting changes
- Get in touch with your core values – knowing what is important to you
- Reduction in relationship pitfalls such as criticism and generalizations
- Building on friendship and things that are working in the relationship
The Boca Raton Therapists at Morgan Center use the latest therapy modalities to help you address your relationship issues and achieve a happier life. For more information, or to schedule a consultation, please contact us at (561) 366-2476.