Updated: Nov 9, 2022
For a generation raised on Disney love stories and other Hollywood happy endings, it can be hard to admit that sometimes, real love can take real work. It doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with you, or even your relationship. It means you are humans who need guidance in an emotional situation. And rather than being a sign of trouble, couples therapy is a sign that you are both invested in creating a better, more fulfilling bond together.
Why Get Couples Counselling?
The idea that you have to be on the verge of breaking up to seek out couples counselling is just plain inaccurate. There are plenty of reasons for wanting to go through this process together, and one of them may simply be a longing to get closer and resolve any communication or intimacy problems before they arise. Others may include the desire to learn:
How to manage conflict in a relationship.
You are two people with different needs, skills, goals, and love languages. Conflict is inevitable – succumbing to it is not. Couples counselling helps mediate conflicts and help you both understand each other in a more thorough, profound way.
How to overcome a lack of sexual intimacy.
A factor like this is more common than you think, but it is usually a complicated issue that ties into all other aspects of a relationship in varying degrees. Couples therapy is a way to trace those threads back to the primary source and unlock your unhindered feelings.
How to spend more time together.
Life gets busy, and the last year has been very stressful for almost everyone. Our partners may be so wrapped up in their own lives that meaningful quality time is suffering. Avoiding that discussion with your partner and harbouring anger about it won’t solve the problem, but approaching it proactively with a trained counsellor can make a big difference.
How to forgive someone after infidelity or betrayal.
Humans are complex and, unfortunately, prone to making mistakes. If you and your partner have experienced infidelity or another lapse in trust, couples counselling should be at the top of the list for ways to resolve it and move forward in your relationship. It will help you let go of resentment and eventually rebuild a foundation of mutual trust and respect.
How Couples Counselling Works
Despite what you might have seen in movies, couples therapy isn’t about assigning blame or attacking one partner’s habits or behaviour. It’s an opportunity to grow, deal with problems in a neutral space, and get an unbiased perspective. Often, people find that their problems are neither unique, nor as bad as they expected.
Is couples counselling effective?
Psychology Today puts the successful resolution rate for couples therapy at about 75%, but it’s important to remember that there is no “guarantee” included. After all, success looks different to different people – and even to the same person, at different stages in their life. These sessions are extremely effective at providing you with tools that you can use to make your own decisions based on what you think is best, and allowing you a way to express yourself honestly and without fear. This self-confidence is an important part of healthy relationships, and can form the basis of greater intimacy and closeness. So even when couples counselling doesn’t work out in reconciliation, you can be sure that the decision will be well-informed and thoroughly thought out.
Couples Counselling Exercises
While there’s no magic formula to fix underlying severe problems in a couples’ relationship, there are small and purposeful steps you can take to start building a new foundation. Even simple actions like the ones laid out here – e.g. trying to be more honest about your needs, resolving disagreements before they fester, and making time for each other – can have sweeping impacts if done consistently and with purpose.
Remember, choosing to go to couples counselling is a positive step that enhances relationships, not a step backward. It’s a place where you and your partner can work on things together and create an even stronger bond than you had before. It’s not something to fear, it’s something to look forward to and value. So if you think it’s right for you, let us know and we’ll help you and your partner create an incredible future together.