When couples tell me they have become disillusioned with the state of their marriage, I often suggest disillusionment might not be all that bad. I say this because a real relationship cannot begin until the illusion ends, and sustaining an inauthentic relationship is little more than living a lie.
As a Covington Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist (LMFT), I help couples become more lovingly honest with one another to reveal a deepening trust – the glue that holds a relationship together.
Is marriage counseling effective?
Yes! Research shows that 75% of those who opt for couples counseling report an improvement in their relationship with their partner and 90% report an improvement in their mental well-being.
But for marriage counseling to be effective, both partners need to be ready to take responsibility for their part in the difficulties, accept each other’s faults, and be determined to repair their relationship.
When it comes to successful marriage counseling, timing is extremely important. The average couple begins marriage counseling after experiencing difficulties for a minimum of six years. The longer a couple waits to seek help, the more entrenched their communication problems have likely become, making them more resistant to treatment.
Why do partners seek couples counseling?
While relationships can be like snowflakes in many respects, there are some common complaints I’ve heard from my clients over the last thirty years:
- You’ve grown apart. Some partners in a long-term marriage lose connection and intimacy, becoming more like roommates than a married couple.
- You fight about money. Always a contentious issue for couples, money is the root of many arguments between spouses.
- You have trust issues. According to the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, 15 percent of married women and 25 percent of married men admit they have cheated on their spouse.
- You argue frequently. Although an argument is not necessarily a bad thing, frequent disagreements can result in tears, hurt feelings, and long-term damage to the relationship.
- You’re in the middle of a major life transition. Even strong marriages can suffer during a major illness, retirement, birth of a child, or when faced with an empty nest.
- You lack intimacy. According to a 2020 study published in the Journal of Sex & Marital Therapy, 47 percent of the 2,371 of recently divorced people surveyed said their marriage ended because of a lack of love or intimacy. While this survey was conducted in Denmark, the trend is equally evident here.
How can therapy help?
If you and your spouse are motivated to improve your relationship, counseling can help you look at problems from a different perspective, learn new ways to recognize and resolve conflicts, improve communication, and provide a neutral environment where the two of you can work through difficult issues.
However, a Covington marriage counselor will not “fix” your marriage. Rather, he or she will act as a consultant to help you look at your marriage with fresh eyes. Try to keep in mind that while you can’t control your spouse, you can modify your own behavior and change the dynamics of your relationship for the better.
Covington Marriage Counseling – Is It for You and Your Partner?
Your relationship was born in hope and this hope may still be alive. If you’re ready to break through the illusion and become more authentic with your partner, let’s talk. You can contact me to schedule a free introductory session, or call or send a text to (985) 778-6049. At this time, all sessions are by live video.