How Does Marriage Counselling Work – Things to Know Before Getting Marriage Counselling

Posted by on Jan 19, 2014 in Marriage Counselling | 0 comments

If you’re anything like the majority of people you have likely already talked with your close friends and family about your marital problems.  That’s good and an important step.  Sometimes our friends can give much needed advice and solace.  But now you’re reaching out for further help.  As well meaning as your friends are, they likely don’t have any training or professional experience in dealing with relationship issues or marriage problems.

Caught up in the busyness of life, it can be challenging taking time to reflect and grow.  But it is ‘do or die’ now.  In order to achieve results through marriage counselling you are going to have to become aware of your own internal beliefs. That brings us to a very important question:

Where do we generally get our relationship and marriage knowledge from? 

Just for a brief moment reflect on where you believe you got your relationship and marriage knowledge from?  For most people it comes from their experiences as a child observing things going on around them.  Most of this conditioning you are likely not even aware of!  And a lot, of that knowledge is not the best way to handle marital problems.


Does marriage counselling work?  Yes, but it takes some work…

I bet you were hoping for a simple yes or no, Unhappy-Married-Couplebut the answer is not a simple one.  It all depends on a number of different factors. For example it depends on what your expected outcome is:  Is this the last ditch effort to save your marriage? Are you looking for a magic instant fix?  Are you prepared, willing and able to put some effort in?

Here are some other important questions to consider:

Are you committed to being and doing your best?
Are you ready to learn about yourself and to learn about your partner?
What do you see the role of your counsellor to be?
What is the style of the marriage counsellor?

After years of counselling couples and married partners, I believe that “Marriage Counselling” is about understanding yourself and your partner, to improve your life together.  This takes effort and practice!  That may turn some away, but you are smarter than that!  You know your spouse is worth it.  Your marriage is worth it.  And, so are you.  By committing to make things better and choosing the right approach fixing your marriage is usually possible.

As Stephen Covey stated – “Seek first to understand and then to be understood.”  Think about where your spouse is coming from first, before diving into how they are making you feel.  It’s so easy to get caught up in how your spouse is making you feel.  That matters.  It really, does!  But sometimes you just need to take a step back and focus on how your spouse is feeling

It may not quite seem like it, but this is a powerful step in taking care of yourself and saving your marriage.

And, the more self care and self understanding you have the better chances you have of making this work.  This also means you’ll be better equipped to have a more wonderful, balanced, and fun relationship (not just with your spouse but with everyone).


So how does marriage counselling work?

“How does marriage counselling work?” is a very common question for couples who are in trouble.  The answer is that it works by growth.  It is a personal, as well as a “together” journey and learning experience.  That may sound airy fairy, but it’s not.  The place you are at now needs to be changed.  You wouldn’t be here if it didn’t.  So growth needs to occur if you are going to save your marriage. 

It may start with you.  Then with you and your partner together.  It is a process of working together and individually with a trained professional, like myself.  Many people have a vision of sitting down and airing out the sheets, so to speak.  But often when you just say everything that is not going well you just make things worse.  So, we’re not going to sit down and make matters worse!

In marraige counselling sometimes both partners come together for the first session or two, then we have individual sessions.  And then the couple comes back together.  Each case is special and has it’s own dynamics and that is why an adaptable and experienced professional is important.

The ultimate outcome is for both you and your spouse to come away improved, with more tools, knowledge, insights and resources for your individual lives and your life together.


How much is the investment?

There is an investment of time, money, and commitment to participate.

The time and money invested for your future will vary.  Depending on your situation. What I am about to say may not be popular with everyone, but it has to do with actually saving your marriage.  It’s not about telling you it’s easy.  I know you want a result, so I will just tell you the truth.

More often than you’d believe, people come to me and expect that just sitting down and talking with me is going to fix their marriage.  They come in and don’t put in any effort on their own, even when we talk about what they should be doing.  As I’ve already mentioned, the reality is that you will have to do work outside of our sessions … if you truly want to save your marriage.

Your time investment depends mostly on you.  on your willingness to be involved with “homework”, “homeplay” and being an active participant in making it successful.

Extra reading, studies, journaling, workshops, etc. are often important to making this work.  Everything prescribed by the right marriage counsellor should be a step in the right direction.  There are no random steps.

Plus there are often sliding scales and payment options available too.  (At least with my services).  You can just give me a call, and we’ll have a brief consultation and talk about how much your investment will cost.


When may it not be the right time to get marriage counselling?

The simple answer to this question is that you must be ready to grow. If you are not ready to explore and enhance yourself, how is it possible to enhance your relationship and eliminate your marriage problems?  The simple answer is that ‘it’s not’.

So be ready or start to be ready, by exploring for yourself.  Even if your partner isn’t showing any interest in fixing your marriage right away.  (We can work together to get them on board).

In many cases, even when one person starts their own self exploration their marriage starts to improve quickly.  At the very least, begin by journaling or meditating.  To some these may seem like lofty activities, but those who have used these activities successfully know their effectiveness.  If nothing else, as you begin to grow, your partner is likely to take notice, and hopefully be inspired by your passion and initiative.

Shifts and changes occur in wonderful ways.  The insightful moments and “aha” insights help both you and your spouse to remember the wondrous aspects of your relationship and marriage.

I congratulate you on your exploration and willingness to make your relationship and marriage really work in the best of ways for you both.

Working on yourself will have a profound impact on your relationship.  A happier, wiser, balanced and more contented you is a HUGE shift!

Call me to get your life and relationship back on track (and to get a free consultation).  I look forward to hearing from you.  (250) 380-0702.

Let’s do this together and save your relationship,


p.s. I wanted to take a second to just say a few important words directly to you.  Though it may not seem like it now, your marriage can be saved.  It’s not always easy, and I’ll be darned if it won’t take some work (from you and your spouse).  However, you are on the right track now in looking for help.  I hope that it works out for you.  And, it would be an honor to help you with your marriage.

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