When to seek marriage counselling
There is generally an assumption that couples therapy only begins when a serious crisis arises in the relationship. Research shows that on average it takes a couple 7 years of struggle before they reach out to start relationship therapy. However, there is no need to wait for a small problem to become a large one, and therefore no such thing as the right time for therapy. You and your partner should be willing to engage in a process of growth and transformation to gain the most out of couples therapy as you can.
Reasons for counselling
A form of self-care
Millennial couples are generally approaching relationship counselling and therapy as a form of self-care, rather than crisis management. We consequently see more young couples come to therapy early on in their relationship to learn about themselves and their relationship skills and values. Some couples are aware of the impact of their family origin on their relationship and want to learn new ways of being a couple from the very start.
Coming to therapy at the early stage of the relationship, the ‘honeymoon stage’, can prepare you with the knowledge and tools to understand the different relationship stages, and the tools to repair and connect when inevitably you face the ‘power struggle stage’ of the relationship.
If you feel lonely in your relationship, or you or your partner is in pain, you can find it challenging to communicate calmly and effectively. By avoiding your partner or triggering them, you can repeat the same script over and over without knowing how to break the cycle. In these cases, reaching out for therapy is highly recommended. In Imago Relationship Therapy we teach couples the steps to transform conflict into connection.
Relationship Crises or Trauma
In cases of affairs, addiction or family losses, it is strongly recommended to start a therapeutic intervention to support both partners with emotional processing, grief, forgiveness or any other appropriate intervention that support the clients’ wellbeing and healthy relationship.
Couples therapy can be very helpful during difficult times. It can teach you how to deal with various issues and re-build the connections in your relationship. Find your Imago Therapist.
Looking for a ‘Judge’
Many come to couples therapy with the misassumption that the therapist will act as the ‘judge’ of who is right and who is wrong. Soon, they discover that the therapist, and especially Imago Relationship therapists, are there to guide them into a safe, connecting and joyful relationship. By raising consciousness about the underlying issues in the relationship, as well as the unconscious agendas each partner brings from their own past, couples learn to communicate more deeply and empathetically with each other.
Learning to communicate effectively in the beginning of your relationship can really help to provide a solid foundation for growth. Our ‘Getting The Love You Want‘ weekend workshop can assist you with having meaningful relationships without the need for couples counselling.
Why Imago relationship therapy?
In Imago relationship therapy, couples are taught the 3 steps of the Dialogue. They learn how to listen fully without defensiveness and judgement, and how to talk without criticism. This helps couples to discover each other and deepen the connection between them, allowing them to become present with one another.
In all cases, reaching out for therapy is a sign of the strength of the couple and their relationship. Engaging in couples therapy will consciously empower you to create, live and maintain the relationship of your dreams.