If you feel like your relationship is struggling and you are going through more than just a “rough patch,” you and your partner may start to wonder whether divorce is the only sensible option. While it is true that divorce can be the best choice for many couples, accepting some outside help can sometimes help you repair a relationship and overcome the problems that are getting between you.
There are several signs that your relationship may benefit from marriage counselling, these include:
Struggling With Differences
Every couple has their differences. Sometimes these are easy to accept, and sometimes less so. If you are struggling with differences and can’t see a solution, then it might be time to get a third party involved. An outside perspective can help you work together to resolve these issues.
Communication is a big part of any relationship, so when problems appear in this area the entire relationship can be put in jeopardy. Most commonly, communication will turn negative or will break down almost entirely and leave couples feeling disconnected and like they are “just occupying the same space.” These issues can be hard to overcome alone, but counselling can help you find healthier ways to communicate.
If one or both partners even consider having affairs, this is usually a sign of problems in a relationship. If an affair has actually taken place, then this can cause even more serious problems between partners. Overcoming an affair is possible, but it takes a lot of work to forgive and rebuild trust. Counselling can help you find a way to achieve this. Alternatively, if the relationship really is at an end, it can help you to confidently reach this realisation and know that you did everything to try and save it.
When a relationship is under strain, one or both partners can start building up negative feelings and these can translate into negative behaviours. This can result in words and actions that are spiteful, unpleasant or calculated to hurt one’s partner, even if the person acting this way really does want to save the relationship and work things out. Marital therapy can help couples get to the root of the negative feelings that are behind these patterns of behaviour, and find healthier and less damaging ways to express and deal with those feelings.
Only Together for the Children
Far too often, couples find they really feel their relationship has failed and they are only staying together for the sake of their children. While their intentions are very good indeed, this can actually be harmful. Most children can tell if their parents are not really getting on, and staying in a strained relationship can actually hurt them. Counselling can help couples to work out their differences and move forward in a way that is better and happier for the whole family, or else decide whether the relationship really is over and whether it is better to separate than stay put just for the kids.
This article was contributed by experienced psychotherapist Michael Kallenbach from Relationship Counselling London.