The Montfort Group

Three Misconceptions about Couples Counseling

Do you need couples counseling? Most marriages hit a rough patch at some point – life happens and the relationship suffers. Maybe it’s a co-parenting issue or a crisis event like infidelity. Perhaps it’s a loss of connection and intimacy. Whatever the reason, it can leave you feeling stuck about how to make things better. However, that’s when you might consider seeing a couples’ therapist. Many couples wait too long to seek help with their relationship because of misconceptions about what couples counseling is like. And that can be a big deterrent to getting the help you need. You may be familiar with some of them including these three:

1. The couples therapist will take sides. 

There are multiple perspectives and experiences in a relationship. A good therapist will listen thoughtfully to each partner’s story. They will help to set goals and work to establish a relationship with each person. Although time will be spent focusing on the needs and emotions of one partner at a time, it doesn’t mean the therapist is siding with one client. A good therapist strives to maintain neutrality in the session and wants you both to be successful. If you have concerns that are not addressed, bring it up with your therapist.

2. Couples counseling takes forever. 

Therapy doesn’t have to be a long drawn out process. The length of time depends on what’s going on, how long it’s been and how motivated you both are to make changes in the relationship. It can take anywhere from 12 to 20 sessions, on average, to feel the shift and relief of better understanding and communications. Couples counseling, is hard work and you have to be prepared to invest the time and money.

3. Marriage counseling is for couples heading towards a divorce. 

Many couples come to therapy as a result of a crisis or recurring problem they can’t resolve on their own but it doesn’t mean that they are headed for divorce. They recognize that something’s not working, have a real desire to change and want to stay together! A skilled therapist can help both parties navigate the issues and offer skills for better communication and understanding. There doesn’t have to be a crisis or serious problem, but a real desire to change what’s not working at the time. Why wait until the situation becomes unbearable? Seeking couples counseling is not a sign of weakness, it’s actually a sign of strength that you recognize the relationship could be better!

Most importantly, don’t let fears about couples counseling prevent you from seeking help for your relationship concerns. Contact the Montfort Group to speak with one of our therapists if you have questions or would you’d like to learn more about the process.

Laurie Poole, MS, LPC

Laurie Poole, MS, LPC

Laurie is a Licensed Professional Counselor with her Masters of Science in Counseling from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX. She is also a graduate of McGill University in Montreal. She received advanced practical training in Emotionally Focused Therapy for couples and families at UT Southwestern, where she spent five years in the Department of Psychiatry’s Family Studies Clinic working with diverse clients of all ages. In addition, she has completed training in Collaborative Law for couples seeking divorce to find solutions in a more amicable way.

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