Some of our favorite moments and some of our most difficult moments in life are centered around relationship.
Whether you are dating, engaged, or married, couples tend to have patterns of relating to one another. Sometimes these patterns foster healthy connection and other times these patterns can become toxic and destructive. In the face of hardships, couples can get stuck repeating unhealthy patterns hoping for different results. This can be an extremely discouraging and frustrating place for couples. During difficult times, couples can experience increased conflict or drift apart emotionally. When this downward spiral becomes difficult to manage, some of the following thoughts and phrases become common:
“All we do is fight.”
“I just don’t think he cares.”
“Something is wrong with our sex life.”
“I feel so alone in this marriage.”
“I think I’d be ok if he/she left me, and this scares me.”
“I sometimes fantasize about leaving.”
The pattern, or relational dance, we have with our partner is often developed in early stages of the relationship. We have unspoken rules to the dance, and we tend to find a partner with a similar dance and a similar set of rules. This dance works for a season, but as each partner changes and grows, a couple’s therapist can be instrumental in learning a new dance or way to relate.
Couple’s Counseling Can Help Create ‘Better Moments’
Your couple’s therapist begins by getting to know you and your partner and begin to identify your dance. They will work with you over time to coach, guide, and point out self-defeating patterns that prevent you from attaining the intimacy you desire. Your couple’s therapist will utilize your strengths while walking alongside you in a safe, non-judgmental space. This setting can help you and your partner practice a new and healthier relational dance that fosters emotional connection.
You may still have some concerns, such as...
“I want to set up an appointment but I am worried about the cost.”
One of the most common questions we receive is related to the time and cost investment of couples therapy. In the short-term, it can seem like a difficult and expensive process, but the payoffs are many. Couples counseling is significantly less emotionally and financially draining than a divorce. Investing in a closer, more intimate relationship can set a positive example for children in the home. Improving emotional connection and safety in the relationship can promote health, improved job performance, and an all-around surge in quality of life. Lots of people understand that the benefits far outweigh the cost but still need some strategies to make it more feasible for their current situation. At Journeys, we work with you to help find ways to offset the cost of therapy. Seeing your therapist bi-weekly can help spread out the cost. Submitting receipts to your insurance for reimbursement works for many couples. Your therapist will work with your unique situation to find options that work for you and your partner.
“I want to get help, but I am afraid that if we come in as a couple, I’ll be ‘ganged’ up on in session”
A well-trained couples specialist will be sensitive to these types of concerns and have years of experience with couple’s in similar situations. Your therapist will help raise awareness of both destructive and healthy patterns as a couple; this focus is on the dynamics of two people, and less about singling out one person’s ‘flaws’. As awareness of these patterns increase, you are in a better position to resolve conflict, increase connection, and create a more sustainable relationship.
"Is my couple’s therapist going to convince us that we need long-term therapy?"
In early sessions you will work with your couple’s therapist to develop goals and a plan for therapy. Your therapist will work with you to assess the complexity of the issues you face as a couple and recommend an appropriate time-frame for therapy. Some issues can be resolved in relatively few sessions, while others are more complex and may take longer to work through.
We generally recommend scheduling an initial assessment with a Journeys counselor to evaluate what your teen or family's specific needs are, as well as determining best options for treatment and more precise answers to the questions you may have about the process. The Journeys team strives to provide you with the perfect fit professionally, and will happily direct you to the counselor with the best personality, expertise and approach for your family.
We invite you to browse our specialties and read up on any issues that might apply to you and your family. You can click on the suggested therapists to schedule a consultation or check out our team to connect with a therapist that's right for your situation. Most of our team members see a variety of clients, so feel free to read up on multiple options!
Need help? Contact our administrative assistant here with any questions, concerns or to be matched with a therapist that is best suited for you and your family's needs.