Are you thinking of going to a couple counselor? Are you wondering how much it will help?
Consider a few fast facts about couples who have seen a counselor:
- 98% say they received “good to excellent” therapy
- 97% felt they got the help they needed
- 93% felt better equipped to deal with problems at home
There’s no doubt about it: Counseling for couples works. Still, you might feel intimidated about your first visit to the office.
What will you talk about during the session? Will you have to answer embarrassing questions? Most importantly, is it really going to help your relationship?
In this post, we’ll discuss 5 things you can expect when you go for couple counseling. Read on to learn more!
1. Questions About Your Relationship
“What brings you in today?” may be one of the first questions you hear when you go for couple counseling.
Your counselor will want to know the issues and difficulties that have led you to their door. They’ll want to know how you met, how long you’ve been together, and what drew you together.
Rather than harping on the negative, a good counselor will also look for the strengths in your relationship and how you can build on those.
2. Questions About Your History
In addition to your current relationship, your counselor will also want to know about your individual backgrounds.
What type of childhood did each of you have? Did you come from a home that was warm and loving or cold and dysfunctional?
Each of us is shaped by our childhood environment. Your counselor will seek to understand the underlying reasons for your thoughts and actions.
3. Mutual and Individual Goals
What do you hope to achieve from your couple counseling sessions?
Do you want to argue less? Have sex more often? Improve your communication and listening skills?
Your counselor will ask each of you what you hope to gain from the therapy. As you describe your vision of an ideal relationship, your counselor will create a path to get you there.
4. Feedback from Your Counselor
Rather than sitting there listening to you talk (or argue), a good counselor will guide the discussion.
They’ll ask you to speak to each other in a calm, clear manner. They’ll also offer suggestions for how to improve your communication skills.
Keep in mind, too, that each counselor has their own communication style. Robin Bryant, Ph. D. may use different methods than a counselor at a non-profit organization.
5. Tools to Use at Home
While couple counseling sessions are a start, the real work begins at home.
During your sessions, your counselor may give you “homework” to practice during your daily routine. They might point out behaviors that are harmful to the relationship and offer healthier alternatives to try at home.
You should also expect to give and receive feedback throughout the process so you can continue towards your goal of a happier relationship.
Are You Ready to Visit a Couple Counselor?
The thought of visiting a couple counselor may seem intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be.
Rather than waiting for things to get worse at home, why not pick up the phone and schedule that consultation?
Couple counseling may be exactly what you and your partner need to improve (or save) your relationship.
Of course, counseling isn’t the only aspect of a happy, healthy lifestyle. Check out our recent health posts for more great advice.