We’ve all been there. Perhaps one of you has a fear of abandonment, or you have different communication styles, causing stress in the relationship. Regardless of what is going on, everyone can benefit from professional guidance regarding their love lives. Couples or marriage counseling can be helpful for couples at any stage in their relationship — whether it’s your first date or you’re trying to rebuild trust after an affair. Counseling provides an objective third party who can bring clarity to problems that are blocking further growth as a couple.
If you feel like your relationship could use some assistance, here are some signs that indicate the need for marriage or couples counseling.
There is constant fighting, resentment, or arguing. You need Couples Counseling.
Disagreements are normal — even healthy — in a relationship. But there is a difference between a healthy disagreement and a constant state of fighting and arguing. Couples stuck in a constant fighting state often run out of reasons to argue, so they start finding reasons to criticize one another.
When this becomes a pattern, it can tear a relationship apart. If you find yourself and your partner constantly fighting, it’s important to seek help before the problem gets out of control.
One or both partners feel unheard, unloved, or unappreciated.
If you or your partner feel like you aren’t being heard or appreciated, it’s common to look elsewhere for validation. People often turn to others because they believe they can’t receive what they need from their significant other.
Couples counseling provides an opportunity for you to say what you’ve been feeling and have it heard, as well as receive validation for the things you do for your partner.
It’s often helpful for couples to have an outside source highlight what each person brings to the relationship and ways they can be appreciated. The counselor can also help you and your partner identify why you’ve been feeling unappreciated and help you communicate that to one another in healthy ways.
Ongoing issues that you and your partner can’t seem to resolve on your own.
Every relationship needs to be worked through, but some issues are more complicated than others. Issues like infidelity, a desire to have children, money issues, significant trauma in one or both partners’ pasts, and parenting styles are often too big to be worked through on your own.
Couples counseling helps couples navigate their way through these kinds of issues by providing a safe space to talk them through. Couples or marriage counselors are often trained in mediation or other conflict resolution techniques specifically designed for couples.
You find yourself asking, “Is this all there is?”
Relationships are a constant process of becoming and growing. If you’ve been together for a while and you find yourself asking if this is all there is, couples counseling can help you find ways to nurture your relationship.
Couples counseling can help you identify your strengths and weaknesses as a couple and set new goals for your relationship. More importantly, it helps you and your partner learn how to support each other in meeting those goals.
One or both of you have trust issues.
Trust is an important part of any relationship, but it takes time to build after infidelity. If you or your partner have trust issues, it can greatly impact your ability to work through other issues in your relationship.
Couples counseling can provide a safe space to talk through trust issues while also helping you identify ways you can work on building trust with your partner. Counseling can help you and your partner identify what you can do to earn one another’s trust.
You aren’t meeting your relationship goals.
Most people enter relationships with certain goals in mind. You might want to spend more time with your partner, or you might want to improve your communication skills.
Depending on how long you’ve been together, it can be easy to get caught up in day-to-day activities and let your relationship goals fall by the wayside. Couples counseling can help you identify your relationship goals and develop a plan for meeting them.
As you can see, there are many indications that a couples or marriage counseling session could be beneficial. If you and your partner are having trouble communicating effectively, want to address trust issues, or want to set new goals for your relationship, there is no better time than now to seek help.