Two main points arise from this situation. Both partners must be sincere in their desire to give the therapy the best chance of working and there is no guarantee that the counseling will work.
That makes finding the right therapist in your area all the more important. Therapy may fail not because the therapist isn’t highly qualified and experienced but because he or she wasn’t the right fit for that particular couple.
So how then to do you find the right therapist?
Well travel to therapy should be kept to a minimum where possible. If you have to travel long distances to a session you are more likely to feel tempted to cancel knowing there is a long commute ahead of you. So, where possible, shop local.
Use the local resources to help you in your therapist search. The pastor or priest of your local church will know of marriage guidance therapists. The church may even have such a service itself. You do not need to be a member of a church to avail yourself of their services.
Then there are your local health professionals. Your family doctor will know of fellow professionals who work in marriage therapy. And that’s where another important point emerges.
Make sure that your therapist specializes in marriage therapy. Therapists are not all the same. They may work with troubled teens or people suffering substance abuse. But if your troubled marriage is not influenced by those areas, then you need to switch your search. Remember therapists are not all the same and you must locate the right one for you.
Other recommendations can be helpful. Do you know a couple who has been to a marriage therapist? If so can they recommend their therapist? What was good about them? Someone without a biased opinion may be an ideal choice.
But having made your choice of a local therapist, do not stay with them if you are not happy. Therapy is such a delicate balancing act where the emotions of the clients and the advice of the expert are constantly being weighed and assessed. If the therapy is not working, it is a waste of time and money to persist. Find a therapist who has the respect of both partners.
And of course once that happens, the real work has only just begun. Both partners must work hard to follow the strategies put in place by the therapist.
Marriage and family therapists are professionals who seek to turn situations around. They need the full co-operation of the couple and only when all parties are fully committed can there be hope that the marriage will be repaired and given the chance to succeed.
There is no short cut and hard work and wisdom are the ingredients which can make changes to both the couple and the individuals.
Here are additional resources you might be interested in: