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5 Warning Signs That You and Your Significant Other Need Relationship Counseling

5 Reasons to Seek Relationship Therapy

  • Separate Lives
  • Poor Communication
  • Keeping Secrets
  • Lack of Support
  • Showing Contempt

A marriage and family therapy degree can prepare a person to do relationship counseling. This type of counseling can help couples who are struggling in their relationship and bring them back together, but often people do not realize their relationship is in trouble until it is too late. Below are five signs of relationship trouble.

1. Separate Lives

Busy careers and the demands of raising children are among the challenges that can drive couples apart. Even sharing the same home, couples can find themselves living separate lives if they are not careful. These couples may not necessarily be fighting, but their relationship can still be damaged. Couples in this situation might want to seek therapy to find out how to reconnect.

2. Poor Communication

According to Huffington Post, there are a few ways that communication can break down. Couples may simply stop talking, they might only have negative interactions or they may have serious issues both are afraid to discuss. There are many other types of communication issues couples may run into. For example, stonewalling happens when one person is trying to discuss issues but the other keeps putting up obstacles. Relationship counseling can help a couple start to communicate effectively again.

3. Keeping Secrets

Secrets do not have to be big ones, like having an affair, to be harmful. Keeping secrets can mean hiding financial information from one another, hiding information about a new friend or simply not sharing feelings honestly. Finding the right balance between privacy and keeping secrets to a harmful degree can be difficult, especially since that balance may vary from couple to couple. A relationship counselor can help a couple identify those boundaries and communicate about them effectively as well as share any secrets they have been keeping that they need to reveal.

4. Lack of Support

Like secret-keeping and poor communication, a lack of support between couples can take many forms. It can be major, such as not supporting a partner through an illness or another difficult life transition like unemployment or the death of a parent. However, a lack of support can also be something that builds up over time with a series of incidents. For example, one spouse might feel the other spouse does not listen to complaints about the day at work, or a spouse might feel undermined by the other at a social event. With a therapist who has a marriage and family therapy degree, couples might be able to communicate better about what kind of support they need.

5. Showing Contempt

Couples can show contempt for one another in a number of different ways. They might snipe at one another verbally, or they might speak disrespectfully about one another in front of family, friends or even their children. Some experts believe that when couples have reached this point, it can be difficult for them to repair their relationship, but even these couples may be able to recover if they are able to talk through the underlying conflict with a therapist and learn to interact in ways that are more loving.

Whether couples decide to stay together or split up, counseling can be helpful. Relationship counseling by someone with a marriage and family therapy degree can help them negotiate the breakup, or it can help them enjoy a long and healthy relationship.