The Benefits of Couples Counciling
All relationships run into bumps, whether from miscommunication, different goals, or different values. When couples can’t seem to resolve these issues, couples counseling may be useful. Talking to someone else about personal problems may feel awkward, but it can be a good way to cut through the confusion to find the heart of the matter. The experience can even bring couples closer together.
What Is Couples Counseling?
Couples counseling is when a couple sits down with a therapist to discuss issues relating to their marriage or relationship. Counseling can help partners gain a better appreciation for themselves, for each other, and for the hopes and dreams they each bring to the relationship. A particular emphasis may be on problem-solving strategies, such as deciding how to spend money or how to reconcile two different sexual desires. If communication between partners is difficult and affection has waned, couples counseling can help partners identify the cause of the strife.
Sexuality in Counseling
Even if sex isn’t discussed outright, sex and sexuality will play a key role in couples counseling. Despite how society and media may make it seem, sex is not an easy thing to figure out, and it’s still largely a taboo subject to discuss in public. In counseling, a therapist will create a comfortable, welcoming environment to ask the questions that may seem odd or embarrassing. Many couples don’t see eye to eye on sexual matters, and this can lead to conflict. Because sexuality is so important to our perception of ourselves, it’s important to address.
Sexuality includes how individuals feel about and express affection and compassion. When someone is having a bad day, their partner may offer a back rub or a foot massage to help them de-stress. But if all the person wants is to be left alone to decompress, forcing physical contact can actually exacerbate the issue. Counseling can help couples learn more about how they each express and desire affection, which is crucial for maintaining a long-term, caring relationship.
Availability and Benefits
Couples counseling is available across the country and from a variety of sources. Independently licensed therapists offer couples counseling, and finding one is as easy as opening the phone book or going online. Be sure to shop around to find a therapist both partners like and are comfortable talking to. Counseling can bring up deeply emotional topics, and both partners need to feel safe talking about them.
The benefits of couples counseling are tremendous. A happy home life translates into a happier life at work and in social settings. Couples can be introduced to problem-solving strategies that wouldn’t have normally been considered, and these strategies can continue to be used throughout the relationship. Perhaps the most important takeaway from couples counseling is a new appreciation for personal responsibility in a relationship. Partners must be willing to take responsibility for the part they play in a problem or disagreement, and while this mental shift can be humbling, it also deeply enriches understanding of the self and of each other.
Resources and Articles on Couples Counseling: