A relationship can be hard to navigate, especially when you and your partner don’t see eye-to-eye on everything from your future goals to how many times a week you should clean the house. When these disagreements become frequent and hurtful, it may be time to seek marriage counseling. Keep an eye out for these six signs that you and your partner may need a therapist’s help in order to
1) When Compromise Doesn’t Work
It can be tough to work out issues in a relationship, especially when two people see things very differently. In fact, no one said relationships were easy or simple and that’s why many people seek couples counseling. The goal of any disagreement is to make sure that both people win in one way or another. If your relationship problems feel gridlocked with little hope of resolving them, it may be time to reach out to a marriage therapist. The good news is that getting couples counseling doesn’t mean you’re doomed or not working hard enough—it means you recognize there is a real issue at hand and want a professional opinion on how to fix it!
2) When You’re Not Happy Anymore
If there’s a lack of love, affection, intimacy, or trust in your relationship, happiness will plummet and marriage counseling will be a good option. Although it’s normal to have periods of unhappiness, this period of disconnection shouldn’t go on too long without really affecting your marriage. The exception to this rule is when one partner is unhappy and wants something more out of their relationship but doesn’t have any desire to make changes and do the work. If you, or your spouse, are not happy anymore and are hoping that marriage counseling will fix things on its own, you might be disappointed. Couples counseling is hard work and will require a lot of effort.
3) When Arguments Go On Forever
No matter how calmly or rationally you or your partner want to discuss relationship problems, sometimes emotions get in the way. Some couples fight about a particular issue for months on end and don’t seem able to work through it—even if they’re both dedicated and want things to change. Long-standing disputes are often a sign that your relationship needs marriage counseling. Consider seeking help from a professional couples counselor.
4) When You Feel Bad About Yourself
One thing that’s important in a relationship is recognizing that no one person can make another happy all of the time. If you feel bad about yourself, your partner will eventually begin to feel like their efforts are not enough. Additionally, if you begin feeling bad about yourself, you’ll be less inclined to support your partner and will probably become more critical of them, which can take a toll on your relationship.
The importance of accepting and loving who you are cannot be overstated, especially when it comes to maintaining a healthy love life. If your own feelings about yourself are in turmoil and uncertainty, then it’s easy for those same feelings to be applied to others—including your spouse. When self-esteem issues arise within a relationship, couples counseling is often necessary.
5) The Relationship is Driving One of You Away
A relationship is only going to work if you are both happy and committed. But, as many couples can attest, if one of you wants out for whatever reason (you feel like you’re with someone who just doesn’t get you, or you find yourself drifting further away from your spouse), that relationship may not be able to weather the storm. I
f one of you wants out, a couples counselor can help determine whether that person truly is unhappy or if he or she simply has doubts about what being married means. A marriage therapist will also help evaluate whether there are specific problems in your relationship (e.g., an issue with communication) that need work in order for both partners to be happy in their marriage for years to come.
6) When You Feel Bad About Who You’ve Become
Sometimes your relationship brings out the worst in you. If you’ve been stuck in blame, defensiveness, and criticism for too long, you might not like who you’ve become. Or perhaps jealousy and mistrust are dominating your thoughts. You might find yourself daydreaming about who you used to be and wishing you could be that person again.
These are signs that your relationship might be in real trouble. Marriage counseling can help you communicate differently and change your relationship dynamics, even if your spouse isn’t ready. Though marriage counseling will likely be recommended, you could also start relationship counseling without your partner.
A lot of people think that marriage counseling is only for couples who are at the end of their rope, but it can actually be extremely helpful to go before you reach that point of no return. Whether your relationship is just starting to suffer or has been under duress for some time, there are certain signs that indicate it’s time to seek out the help of a professional couples counselor or marriage therapist.
If any of these sound familiar, you may want to take your relationship problems more seriously and invest in couples counseling sooner rather than later. By recognizing these signs early on, you and your partner can get the help you need in order to make your relationship better than ever before.
If you’re contemplating starting marriage counseling, it’s important to find a therapist that’s a good fit for you and your partner. Follow the questions from this post to find a marriage therapist that works for you.
In Colorado? Knot Counseling for Couples, Individuals + Families offers FREE CONSULTATIONS for marriage counseling to make sure we’re a good fit and so you learn what to expect in your first sessions. Call 720-583-5668 to schedule a call.