Even happily married couples and long term relationships can hit obstacles along the way. When this happens, couples can either go it alone and try to work through their issues themselves, or they can seek the guidance of a trained and experienced couples counselor. While some couples feel their problems should be kept private, many more are finding the value of seeking help from an impartial and nonjudgmental third party.
Here are 3 ways individual counseling can help your relationship.
1. Identifying Behavioral Patterns
Most of us are aware of our partner’s behaviors but unaware of our own. And, most challenges faced by spouses is the result of the patterns between them. But when you only see half (or less) of the dysfunctional patterns, the problems in the relationship can seem confusing and overwhelming.
A therapist is trained to help individuals recognize their own negative patterns and how they manifest in a relationship. The result is both partners are empowered and able to take a step back during conflicts as they occur, preventing escalation.
As a bonus, a therapist can also point out the strengths and resources they find in your relationship so you can leverage and learn how to nourish them.
2. Change at the Root Level
Once your therapist has helped you identify negative patterns, they can then help you understand why they are happening and assist you in changing them. Most behavioral patterns are formed and ingrained when we are very young – before we become self-aware and before we’ve met our significant others.
Understanding why your partner reacts a certain way can create empathy and help communication. Once you’ve laid this solid foundation, your therapist can give you specific adjustments that can change your relationship for the better.
3. Deeper Intimacy
A therapist will not only tailor changes based on your unique dynamics as a couple, they will help you practice the adjustments and encourage you to remain vigilant and consistent. The result is a deeper intimacy and a deeper understanding of each other with a renewed commitment to meet each other’s needs and desires.
While you may first feel embarrassed discussing romantic problems in front of a stranger, ultimately a couples counselor can bring you both to a more fulfilling phase of your partnership.
If you or a loved one is interested in exploring treatment, please contact me today. I would be happy to speak with you about how I may be able to help. I am a licensed mental health counselor and have an office in Clearwater Florida. I work with individuals and couples to strength their relationships, improve communication and intimacy and help them to overcome trust injuries (secrets, infidelity, gambling etc).