COUPLE’S THERAPY: – ARE YOU IN OR OUT?
Most couples feel like it only when they are really having issues or at the point of divorce is when they need to go for therapy. Couples are often uncertain what to expect from the process of couple’s therapy, they are not sure of what to expect of the therapist or even if the therapist has any expectations of them.
Racine R. Henry, PhD, a licensed marriage and family therapist, tells Bustle, “Couples therapy is a good choice for a couple whenever they feel like they are stuck and can’t figure out a realistic solution,” “Going to therapy does not mean that your relationship is failing or that something is inherently wrong. We all get stuck sometimes and just having a neutral person involved can work wonders.”
If you and your partner are not sure whether you need therapy? consider these questions about yourself, your partner, and your marriage: –
- Did you marry at an early age?
- Did you not graduate from high school?
- Are you in a lower income bracket?
- Are you in an interfaith marriage?
- Did your parents’ divorce?
- Do you often criticize one another?
- Is there a lot of defensiveness in your marriage?
- Do you tend to withdraw from one another?
- Do you feel contempt and anger for one another?
- Do you believe your communication is poor?
- Is there infidelity, addiction, or abuse in your marriage?
You might also be wondering aside those mentioned above, who are also likely to benefit from couple’s therapy?
- Younger couples
- Non-sexist and egalitarian couples
- Couples who are still in love with each other
- Couples who are open to therapy and change
- Partners willing to look at themselves and their flaws
Couples who wait too long before seeking help, when one spouse is set on divorce, couples who are closed to any suggestions that may save the marriage, one partner addicted to alcohol, drugs or pornography and unwilling to quite, marriage with one partner showing up to sessions and not invested in the work are the type of couples to get the least from couple’s therapy.
If you answered “yes” to most of these questions, then you both should book an appointment with a therapist.
Most times, couples come with the notion that each one will describe their distress and the therapist will somehow assist them to create a happier, more functional relationship.
For us as human to want to do anything, we first ask what are the goals and objectives? The major aim of therapy is to increase your knowledge about yourself, your partner and also the patterns of interaction between you. The goal is to increase your clarity about:
- The life you want to build
- The partner to aspire to be
- The relationship you want to create
- Individual blocks to becoming the kind of partner you aspire to be
- The knowledge and skills necessary to be the kind of partner you spire to be
To be able to achieve al the aim and objectives above and create sustained improvement in your relationship you need: –
- Vision of the kind of life you want to build
- The right attitude and skills to work as a team
- To have an individual life from your partner
- Motivation to keep going
- Give time to review progress
- To be willing to take some difficult tradeoffs and make tough choices for each person.
Now that we have looked at who to consider therapy, couples that will benefit from it, those that are likely to get the least from it, the aim and objective, now comes the question:- ARE YOU IN OR OUT?