Couple’s therapy is a type of psychotherapy in which a therapist with clinical experience working with couples, usually specialized in a proven couple’s therapy method, helps two people involved in a romantic relationship gain insight into their relationship, resolve conflict and improve relationship satisfaction utilizing a variety of therapeutic interventions. Although the practice of couple’s therapy may vary depending on the therapist’s theoretical orientation, all couple’s therapy tends to involve the following general elements:
- A focus on a specific problem (sexual difficulties, infidelity, addiction, jealousy)
- Active participation on the part of the therapist in treating the relationship itself, rather than each individual separately.
- Solution-focused, change-oriented interventions early on in treatment.
- A clear establishment of treatment objectives.
Research shows that more than 97% of couples who participate in couple’s therapy say they received the help they needed from couple’s therapy. In addition, 93% of couples said therapy gave them more effective tools for dealing with conflict.
Couple’s therapy will usually begin with some standard interview questions regarding the history of the relationship as well as some exploration into each partner’s family-of-origin, values and cultural background. The therapist might use the initial sessions for crisis intervention if necessary.
The couple’s therapist will then assist the couple in identifying the issue that will be the focus of treatment, establishing treatment goals and planning a structure for treatment. During the treatment phase, the therapist will help the couple gain insight into the relational dynamics maintaining the problem, while helping both partners understand each of their roles in the dysfunctional interactions. This will help them change the way they perceive the relationship and each other.
Most couples can come away from couple’s therapy having gained insight into relational patterns, increased emotional expression and developed the skills necessary to communicate and problem-solve with their partners more effectively.
Who Should Consider Couple’s Therapy?
Couple’s therapy is beneficial for any kind of relationship, including:
Straight or gay relationships
Relationships facing acculturation issues (different culture/ethnic backgrounds)
Young teen or college relationships
Relationships with a large age gap
Relationships that are at any stage, including dating, engaged, or married
Should you seek counseling or get a divorce?
If your relationship with your partner is unhealthy, getting a divorce should not be the first option. You want to know that, regardless of the outcome, YOU did everything within your power to save your relationship, your marriage, your family. You could always remarry your spouse if later on you realize you made a mistake but to avoid the hassles of a divorce and remarriage, it is best to make sure that divorce is that last option.
If you have a desire to stay married to your spouse, I will be delighted to help. I believe that when you decide to marry someone, you marry for life, for better or for worse in sickness and in health and you make your marriage work, whatever it takes, no matter what. However, I also believe in a marriage based on respect, good communication, trust, and honesty which are the foundations of a healthy and functional marriage. Love is never enough without the foundations of a solid marriage. Couple’s counseling can be a meaningful way to restore the foundation of the marriage and clarify whether divorce is the appropriate decision if nothing else works.
How is Online Couple’s Therapy Different from Traditional Couple’s Therapy?
At this time, I continue to offer virtual and in-person couple’s therapy in a safe and secure environment. In the age of a global health crisis, we have learned that virtual couple’s therapy has several advantages that are not afforded in traditional face-to-face couple’s therapy. First, there is the opportunity for much more communication given the ability to share as much as one wants, without any interruptions. The ability to process one’s own thoughts before sharing them in the therapy room results in partners communicating more appropriately and more efficiently.
This method of couple’s therapy is also ideal for couples where one or both partners frequently travel or have very different schedules and are unable to coordinate a time to attend couple’s therapy sessions together. Also, couples with children who have difficulty finding childcare can greatly benefit from the accessibility of having their therapy session via doxi.me. I would be honored to help you restore your relationship to the best of times between the two of you.