You might be feeling like your marriage is so hard, and thereâ€™s no way out. There is a better way, and we want to help.Â
Is your marriage in crisis? Do you find yourself having the same fight over an over with your spouse? Have you or your partner recently had an affair and you have no idea what to do? Are you finding it hard to communicate anything but frustration and anger with the person you love? If you answer yes to any of these, then marriage counseling would be helpful for you. At New Vision Counseling and Consulting in Oklahoma City and Edmond, we want to help you!
How do I get started with marriage counseling?
The first step is to find a marriage therapist. At New Vision Counseling and Consulting we specialize in treating couples and marriages. When seeking out a marriage counselor, it is important to find a therapist that spends a lot of time working with couples. There are a lot of therapists out there, but not all have been trained to specifically work with couples, and this matters! If you are seeking counseling, make sure to ask if marriage counseling is a specialty of the counselor or therapist.
Then, call and set up an appointment. Starting counseling can be intimidating for sure, but the longer you wait to get started, the longer you are putting off getting help. Donâ€™t delay getting the help that you need. Often, I will ask couples how long they have been experiencing the problem that brought them into therapy, and they will say, â€śItâ€™s been going on for yearsâ€ť. Years! That is a long time to suffer with a problem without getting help! However, the best time to start is now, no matter how long the problem has been around. If you feel stuck, reach out!
What can I expect to happen in marriage therapy?
First, you can expect that your therapist will get to know you and answer any questions you have about the process. Also, your therapist will ask you questions about the problem that brought you to therapy. Sometimes itâ€™s obvious, like an affair, and other times it is not so obvious. You may know the problem is â€ścommunicationâ€ť, but be unsure as to why your communication is not working. Your therapist will help you identify the problem to be worked on in therapy.
Next, you can expect that your therapist will develop a plan of action with you. Different therapists have different approaches, and they should be able to give you an idea of what therapy will look like. Then, the therapist will guide you through the process and find ways to help you change your relationship in positive ways.
Finally, you can expect to be challenged in therapy. Therapy is not always fun and comfortable. However, if you are up for the challenge and push through the difficult parts, chances are you will benefit from therapy. Much of your therapy success will depend on you and your partner trying new things and being willing to change.
How do I get the most out of marriage therapy?
Come to therapy ready to do whatever it takes to help your relationship succeed! Be willing to take an honest look at yourself and focus on what you can do to change your part of the relationship. The more you focus on what you can do to make your marriage better, the better chances of success you will have. Donâ€™t wait on your spouse to change before you do!
Also, hang in there! Sometimes things get worse until they get better. You and your spouse may find yourselves fighting more than you did before therapy. This does not necessarily mean therapy is not working, it may mean your relationship is trying to change, but with change comes resistance. If there is no resistance, then nothing is changing. It is also common to start strong and make a lot of changes at first, but then after several sessions, you have a big blow up and revert to your old ways. Again, this is not a failure, this is an opportunity to practice what you learned and find your way back to health again. We donâ€™t grow without struggles!
At the same time, if you feel like the therapy is not helping, donâ€™t quit! Discuss this with your therapist. A good therapist invites feedback and is willing to pivot if something is not working. Sometimes a therapist and just not a good fit with a couple, and thatâ€™s okay! Try a different therapist. Your current therapist can even give you a recommendation.
What if my partner is not on board and wonâ€™t do therapy?
Still get help yourself. You do not have to wait until your partner is ready in order to start working on your part of the relationship. While this is not â€śmarriage counselingâ€ť, finding a therapist that can help you in your relationship can benefit the marriage. This may go without saying, but also find a therapist who is marriage-affirmingâ€”someone who wants your relationship to succeed if at all possible.
One of the greatest things you can do for your relationships is work on yourself. I tell people, â€śIt takes two to tango, but only one to changeâ€ť. If you change your part in a relationship and refuse to do what youâ€™ve always done, the other person will have to change in some way. Learn to react differently to your partner, and you may find it makes a meaningful difference.
While no one can guarantee success in therapy, we can guarantee you that we will give you our best and do our best to help your relationship! We are here to provide the best possible marriage counseling in OKC, Edmond, and the surrounding area. Contact us to schedule an appointment right away so you can get started on saving your marriage!
Marriage Counseling OKC by Ben Thompson, LMFT