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Therapy Blog for Orem, American Fork, Spanish Fork & South Jordan
Marriage Counseling Do’s and Don’ts
Marriage counseling has been shown to be effective and helpful for more couples than not. Many couples here in Utah have found success in marriage therapy. There are some things that couples do that seem to help in the process of their treatment and some things they do that seem to get in the way of progress.
Marriage Counseling Do’s
- Show up – going to therapy will give you a better chance of changing and making progress than not going. This one seems like a no-brainer, but for many couples it isn’t. Let someone who is a professional help you with your problems. They are trained to help and will apply a treatment that has been proven to be effective (Related Article: Couples Therapy).
- Talk about yourself – One of the temptations of marriage counseling is to talk about your spouse. You might want to tell the therapist about all your spouse does that hurts you so that they understand the situation. Talking about yourself is vulnerable and can be difficult (Related Article: Communication In Relationships). It can help you and your spouse become closer.
- Be safe for your spouse – Your partner needs to know that it’s safe to be vulnerable with you. Can they open up to you and be accepted and validated? Are they safe to be human and make mistakes? When you are safe for your spouse the two of you have a chance to become closer (Related Article: What Is Emotional Safety In A Relationship?).
Marriage Counseling Don’ts
- Expect the therapist to ‘fix’ you – The therapist will do everything they can to help, but ultimately it’s up to you to fix yourselves. It’s up to you to apply what you are learning in a manner that matters. No one else can make your relationship better, even if they have a role in helping you. This is good news because this means that you have the power and don’t need to completely rely on others.
- Stop before you are better – Many couples stop treatment before they are done. Sometimes they come into therapy escalated and in conflict. As soon as they stop fighting they believe that they are ‘done’ and ready to move on. Stopping your fights is not the same as learning how to connect with each other. You need to be able to connect in order to improve your relationship. The absence of fighting is not enough. So, keep going. Trust in the process of treatment to help you learn, practice and experience progress.
Marriage counseling can be effective. Many of your Utah neighbors have been successful in applying it.