Can couples counselling save a relationship?
Yes, couple counselling can save your relationship. Ideally, couple counselling helps you to reconnect with the love that brought you together in the first place. Remember those early days of your relationship, endless conversations, sharing hopes and dreams, hours of being lost in the magic of lovemaking, totally besotted with one another? All too often, as a relationship progresses, real life intervenes, and lovers begin to drift away from the romance and excitement of those early days. Setting up a home together, starting a family, work and financial commitments can all take their toll. Those early days of sharing body and soul can get lost and resentment can build.
Couples often don’t seek relationship counselling until they are in crisis, and sometimes only because they are looking for a way out, maybe hoping the relationship counsellor will tell them it’s over. This, of course, is not the job of a relationship counsellor. Ideally please seek help as soon as there are problems, then it’s much easier to heal the rift.
If you and your partner are in agreement about saving your relationship then ask yourselves if you are prepared to make changes. A good relationship usually requires a lot of compromise, understanding and agreement. Relationship counselling may challenge you on some of your habits as a couple, time apart, socialising or holidaying separately.
Infidelity, alcohol, drug use, and gambling are sometimes factors in why a couple are seeking relationship counselling. These issues can be worked through as part of your counselling.
Couple therapy provides a safe space for couples to resolve problems and difficulties they have not been able to deal with on their own. Often we feel stuck with conflicts, assumptions, and misunderstandings and may find we keep repeating past mistakes. Couples counselling is there to help you explore and understand each other’s hopes and expectations of the relationship, without fear and negative assumptions.
Relationship counselling encourages you to open up without fear of judgement or criticism, as the counsellor helps you explore your relationship whilst finding new ways to navigate through old differences and assumptions to a place of understanding.
In your sessions, you are encouraged to use the “I” word, so you learn to say “I feel” rather than “You make me feel”. This is because most of us move into accusing and blaming, instead of really listening and understanding our partner. The counsellor will help ensure you are both able to understand each other, which can dramatically change your interaction, and therefore your relationship.
Sometimes there are problems within a relationship that predate you being a couple: things experienced in childhood, how you were parented, previous relationships, illness or trauma, that are impacting on your current relationship. Your counsellor may then suggest some one-to-one sessions to resolve these issues so as to better concentrate on your present relationship.
If you were once in love and happy together, then there is every chance you can revitalise your relationship and make it even better than before.
You have nothing to lose and everything to gain by trying couple counselling. Love is all you need.
Let’s talk about it
If you are seeking a counsellor, Diana Parkinson can help through talking therapies. Diana is an experienced counsellor ready to listen and work with you to help improve your happiness.