Basic Couples Therapy

Whatever happens in the future, you can work together right now to have the most fulfilling relationship possible.

Most things in life seem to get easier with time. Unfortunately, marriage doesn’t seem to be that way. Humans are complicated creatures that are always growing and changing. Naturally, our relationships change, too. Couples therapy can help you navigate those individual and relational changes so that you can have the best possible relationship over time.

What is Couples Therapy?

Couples therapy is the opportunity for both partners to come together in the presence of a therapist in order to resolve conflicts, improve communication and set goals.

When you get married, you are filled with hopes and dreams for the future. Couples therapy can help both of you get back on the same page so that you can realize those hopes and dreams.

Alternatively, you may discover that your dreams have changed. In that case, couples therapy can help you understand one another’s new perspectives. Whatever happens in the future, you can work together right now to have the most fulfilling relationship possible.

Why Couples Therapy is Important

By now we have all heard the statistic that fifty percent of marriages end in divorce. If you’re in a second, third, or subsequent marriage, then the likelihood of divorce is statistically even greater. Plus, did you know that the overall divorce rate among people over the age of 50 has doubled in the last two decades?!

In other words, it feels like the odds are stacked against a happy marriage, especially as you get older. However, this does not mean that your own marriage isn’t going to work. You can beat the odds and build a relationship together that not only survives but thrives.

You can have the marriage that you’ve dreamed of. However, it does take work. Couples therapy is a key part of that work. But, believe it or not, couples therapy can also be fun.

When Is It Time to Go to Couples Therapy?

There is no wrong time to go to couples therapy. If both of you are open to the possibility of working on your marriage to at least some degree then couples therapy can help. That said, people often come to therapy during times of stress or transition.

Challenging Transitions in Relationships

If you are currently or have recently gone through one of the following things then you might benefit greatly from couples therapy:

  • Children are in transition – moving out of the house or moving back in after college.
  • Employment and/or financial changes
  • Medical issues have arisen changing the dynamic in your relationship.
  • Passion and excitement have waned and you’d like to get them back. You’re “roommates” more than partners.
  • Some transitions are slow to happen but you see them in retrospect.
  • You are newly married and trying to adjust to a blended family and/or living together.
  • Your children have “left the nest” and/or you’ve retired and you’re wondering what’s next in your marriage.

Something Doesn’t Feel Quite Right

Alternatively, you may be in more of an emotional transition. Some couples go along for years without acknowledging that there’s something missing. After spending a long time focused on children and careers, they begin to get older and start wondering, “is this all there is?” Just because your marriage hasn’t “failed” doesn’t mean that it’s successful in the way that you want it to be.

Ask yourself:

  • Do I have the connection that I want?
  • Am I supported in the ways that matter to me today?
  • What dreams do I have for this relationship that may be unfulfilled?
  • Is our intimate life what I desire?
  • What type of partner am I and is that who I want to be?

Sometimes you just get to a point where you realize that you want more out of life. Couples therapy can help you identify what you each want, articulate it to one another, and problem solve together to move forward.

“Fortunately, the payoff of taking the time to coax the marriage into its fullest expression is immense.”
– Eli J. Finkel

What to Expect in Couples Therapy

Your couples therapist may see each of you individually for a session or two in order to get a complete picture of what’s happening in the relationship. However, most of your sessions will take place together as a couple.

Some of the things that you’ll have the opportunity to do in couples therapy include:

  • Tell your “relationship story” so that you can both get on the same page about the past, present, and future.
  • Discuss and resolve past problems in the relationship so that you’re not hanging on to them moving forward.
  • Practice sharing authentically and listening to one another with an open mind. We get into habitual communication patterns over time that may not serve us. Couples therapy helps you learn new communication skills.
  • Reconnect intellectually and intimately. Some aspects of couples therapy are fun and exciting.
  • Make decisions together about the future.

When you try to talk to one another alone, you may encounter a lot of baggage, frustration, and dead-ends. Couples therapy can help you break through those barriers. Reach out today to make an appointment.