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Try Marriage Counseling Before Divorce
Marriage counseling is often seen as a last resort before divorce. Is this a bad thing? I don’t think so. It’s best that you try couples therapy as soon as you see problems in your relationship (Related Article: Couples Counseling – Why Waiting Can Hurt). Most couples wait too long, even years too long before they first need counseling (see Dr. John Gottman’s work).
So, let’s talk about why marriage counseling before you get divorced, if you have waited this long, still can help and isn’t necessarily bad.
What Marriage Therapy Before Divorce Can Do
Marriage counseling can put you and your spouse on a path of healing. It will give you opportunities to grow closer together as you struggle through your problems (Related Article: Marriage Counseling – One Common Myth). This is one of the tricks of successful marriages. You get closer together as you work through your problems. You don’t have to wait until you are ‘problem free’ to then get close. No, you can actually get close as you work on your marriage problems together. You get closer because of your marriage problems, not in spite of them.
Also, marriage counseling can help you address areas of individual growth that you have probably always needed. Your relationship will benefit from your individual work as well (Related Article: Counseling for Individuals).
What Marriage Therapy Before Divorce Can’t Do
Marriage counseling won’t do the work for you – you have to do it. Your relationship problems will still be there if you go into marriage counseling. However, you do have a chance to actually work on them, but they will initially still be a problem. Just going to therapy isn’t going to fix that. So, put in the work. If your relationship is worth saving in your eyes, sacrifice and be humble, courageous and willing.
It won’t magically fix your marriage problems. Marriage counseling at this point in your relationship has the potential to make things worse as you have a lot of problems that have built up over the years. You both have habits that have contributed to your marriage problems that need correcting. There is a lot of hurt and pain that also needs to be healed. This takes time and a lot of work on you and your spouse’s part.
If you are thinking about divorce, try marriage counseling. It isn’t guaranteed to work, but certainly will give you a chance to turn things around.