Are You Seeking Marriage, Relationship or Premarital Counseling?
- Do you want to have the best relationship of your life?
- Do you want your marriage to last?
- Perhaps you want to be crystal clear on you and your partner’s expectations before you tie the knot.
- Are there lingering issues that you don’t feel comfortable discussing with your partner?
- Have you both fallen into communication patterns that are shaped by silence, resentment or nagging?
Feeling uncertain about the future of your relationship or being in persistent conflict with your partner can be a lonely and frustrating experience. One or both of you may be expressing doubts or reservations that often led to feelings of stress, sadness and deep dissatisfaction. Although you want to rebuild your relationship and/or feel prepared to take it to the next level, you may not know how, which leaves you questioning if a long-term satisfying partnership is even feasible.
Whether you’ve been with your partner or spouse for decades or are just now making one of biggest decisions of your life to marry, all relationships change overtime. You may want to cultivate a better understanding of how to effectively work through current and future challenges as a team.
All Couples Struggle
It’s completely normal for couples to disagree, face challenges and have doubts or reservations, even if they’re small or fleeting. Being in love is nothing short of magical, but what happens when the magic fades? Relationship difficulties often heighten during times of transition, such as moving in together, having children, changing careers, becoming engaged or married, experiencing a loss, going back to school and more. Stress of all kinds can impact relationships. It may not seem like it now, but it takes work to stay in love. Overtime, it’s easy for your relationship to take the backseat to work, children or other responsibilities.
The good news is that according to a survey published in the Journal of Family Psychology, couples who receive premarital counseling report higher levels of marital satisfaction and are 30 percent more likely to stay married.
Don’t be like most couples, who wait an average of six years before seeking professional marriage help. Now is the time to proactively invest in your current and future love life by learning the skills needed to sustain a long-lasting loving bond.
Relationship and Pre Marriage Counseling Can Help Clarify Issues and Create a Positive Path Forward
Couples therapy provides a safe space for you and your partner to each express yourselves openly and honestly and talk through the concerns that are driving your doubts, disconnection or discord. The overall goal of couples counseling is to identify and address any existing or potential areas of conflict in the relationship (hopefully before those issues become serious concerns), and teach you both how to effectively discuss and resolve conflict in a supportive, loving and respectful manner.
Whether you’ve finally found someone you want to spend your life with, who gets and accepts you for who you are– quirks, foibles and all, or you want to reignite the spark in your partnership; relationship counseling can help. Regardless of the stage your relationship is in, it’s important to discuss the ins and outs of your life together and understand each other’s expectations and desires. Successful, happy partnerships have a strong foundation of communication, emotional connection, friendship and agreement. Together, and with compassion, we’ll discuss and practice ways to protect these elements. We may also examine your family of origin, career and financial goals, parenting styles as well as your history of relationships with peers and romantic partners. In a safe, compassionate environment, you can come to understand why you think, feel and behave the way you do and gain a greater sense of control over how you express your emotions, thoughts, and beliefs to your partner and others. As you become increasingly aware of your own needs and how to communicate them, you can begin to experience inner balance, set clear boundaries, and enjoy greater harmony in all your relationships, including your relationship you have with yourself.
We all enter relationships with high expectations of “how it’s going to be.” But as time goes by, things change. But things can continue to change for the better. Have you ever seen a couple in their 80s with that spark, respect and openness in their relationship? It is rare find, but I’ll tell you what when you see it, it’s a beautiful thing. The love you have for your partner has lead you to this threshold, and it’s the commitment you share that will ultimately protect the bond in the long run. With the empathetic relationship advice of an experienced couples counselor, it’s possible to foster the love you both share.
You may still have questions or concerns about couples counseling…
I want to go but my partner does not.
It’s normal for at least one of you to feel apprehensive about couple’s therapy. Counseling is often considered for people who have something “wrong” with them. But let me assure you, there is absolutely nothing wrong with asking for help when you need it. Having a neutral third party professional help you clarify concerns can only strengthen the bond you already have.
If you are having difficulty getting your partner to join our sessions, here are four tips:
- In a serious, calm voice without interruptions, clearly describe your feelings. Briefly review the things you have already tried to “fix” in the relationship. Explain that your next (and perhaps final) attempt is to seek therapy.
- Do not blame or yell.
- Keep it brief. Don’t go on and on, sitting for hours recycling the same stories and feelings.
- Instead of concentrating on negative behaviors (“We need therapy because you do everything wrong!”), focus on the hope for the positive (“I want to laugh more and have fun with you … and therapy can help us do that.”). How can your partner argue with that?
Why do we need counseling before we are even married?
What if you could address topics that could potentially be major issues — deal breakers, even — down the road. Marriage problems could range from finances, parenting styles, career paths all the way to current small irritations. Wouldn’t you like to avoid the common pitfalls that often come with a long-term relationship?
I am in the process of planning a wedding, and my finances are stretched thin. How much will therapy cost?
Although there is a cost involved with this work, it may help to consider pre-marital counseling as part of your wedding planning costs. Much like you set a budget and plan for retirement financially, premarital counseling secures your investment for the long run. The overall cost of therapy will depend on your goals and what comes up during our sessions. We may only need a few sessions to build understanding and satisfaction.
You Can Have A Wonderful Long-Lasting Relationship
If you still have questions or concerns about relationship counseling or my practice located in Denver, CO, please call 720-295-8553 for a free 20-minute phone consultation. If you’re ready to schedule an appointment, please contact me. I’m happy to discuss how couples therapy or premarital counseling can help you and your partner’s love life. I offer services on a sliding scale.