Does the idea of coming to couples counseling send a shiver of fear down your spine? If you answered yes, you’re in good company.
Many couples know they need help, but they worry that the therapist won’t really be able to deliver. Maybe he or she will just spout the same old “solutions” they’ve already thought of before – or recommend things they’re not willing to do.
If you’re worried about the value of couples counseling, let me reassure you that in my work with hundreds of couples in the Las Vegas area, I’ve seen how powerful it can be in helping people restore love, communication, and trust in their relationships. Here are 5 common fears that you may have – and the reasons they shouldn’t hold you back.
Worry #1: The therapist will judge us.
The truth is, many couples face issues just like the ones you’re having — which means your therapist has likely worked with others who are in the same boat. Every couple is unique, but your therapist is unlikely to be shocked by anything you share.
Therapists are generally understanding and nonjudgmental. They are skilled at being open to your needs without imposing their views on you.
Worry #2: The therapist won’t have any solutions we haven’t already tried.
Often, finding a solution for a particular issue isn’t the main goal of couples counseling – although the process may begin with an open discussion of what you feel needs to change. Your therapist will help you learn new ways to communicate about issues so you don’t fall into painful, unproductive patterns that can harm your relationship. The issues you bring into the room will lead to healing on an entirely different level than you expected.
Worry #3: The therapist will choose sides.
An experienced couples therapist will not favor one partner over the other, although there may be times when one partner is the focus of a particular session. Other times, the focus will switch. No matter how strongly you believe that one of you is the “real problem”, the therapist knows that it takes two people to create a whole relationship – and two people to create progress.
Worry #4: Marriage counseling is a waste of time and money.
This can only happen if one or both of you are not committed to the process. If you’re open to counseling and you bring your best to it, you can accomplish a great deal in every session. Your therapist may also give you simple assignments to do before your next session, which can accelerate your progress.
Couples therapy is a time that is 100% devoted to your relationship. It may be the only time you and your partner are able to sit down together and focus on one another. Having a skilled professional who is thoroughly trained in couples dynamics will make your conversations even more productive.
Worry #5: We’ll just sit there and fight the whole time.
Some sessions can lead to arguments, but your therapist has tools to manage conflict and return your focus to the deeper issues that are causing repetitive flare-ups between you. You’ll learn more about what triggers these fights and how to turn them into productive conversations that actually strengthen the bond between you.
Don’t let fear block you from creating the relationship you want
As the founder of Couple Counseling here in Las Vegas, I have helped hundreds of couples address their fears and anxieties as they begin therapy. If you are ready to build a more loving, satisfying relationship, I am here to help. Get in touch with me now to schedule our first conversation.