My husband and I have been through many years of marriage counseling, more than ten in fact. We’ve seen it all, heard it all, and even experienced it all ourselves. That doesn’t mean we know everything, nor do we think that every marriage counseling session, regardless of the subject under discussion, is a waste of time. Far, from it. In fact, I’d say that a good marriage counseling session can be the most valuable and instructive experience a couple can have, short of divorce.
Ok, enough of that. What is marriage counseling really about? Are there hard and fast rules about what it should and shouldn’t be? Yes, and no. As with anything else, there are some fundamental rules that are true of all couples counseling and those rules should be followed regardless of how strongly each couple wants to go in different directions.
The first basic rule of marriage counseling is honesty. This sounds like common sense but there are many cases where couples counseling goes awry because the counselors become dishonest with their clients, misleading them in one way or another in order to help them work through their problems. If you go to a marriage counselor, never lie to them, never try to get them to lie to you, or never assume guilt in any way. In fact, if you feel guilty about lying, tell the truth even if it’s not an easy truth, that way you won’t become a target for the other person in question, and he or she will only end up helping you get your marriage back on track instead of destroying it.
Next, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Unless you can handle the issue on your own, don’t hesitate to bring up issues in the marriage that aren’t getting the attention they deserve from either party. If you need a breather from the conversation for a few moments, feel free to ask your counselor for one. This is perfectly acceptable in most cases.
Lastly, don’t be afraid to follow your own heart on whatever decision you make regarding the marriage. Everyone has their own opinion on what is going on in a marriage, and everyone will have a different interpretation of each situation. If you truly believe your partner needs help more than you do, then you should believe that as well and you should respect their wishes.
There are a lot of things that go into marriage counseling. However, these tips will go a long way towards ensuring that you are able to have a more successful session. Always remain honest with your counselor and don’t be afraid to disagree with him or her. Don’t let your guard down and believe everything your counselor tells you. If you follow this advice, you’ll be much better off when it comes time to actually go through the steps involved in marriage counseling with your partner.