Couples therapy can be a healthy and effective solution for many relationships in trouble. If your spouse objects to the idea of counseling because it's a "waste of time," or he fears you and the counselor will gang up on him, it can be tough trying to convince him to attend even one session. The following four tips can help you introduce the idea of counseling in a positive light that is non-threatening to your spouse.
1. Introduce the Idea of Couples Therapy at the Right Time
Although you may be at the end of your rope because of problems in the relationship, wait until you are both in a calm and reasonable mood before you bring up the idea of attending couples counseling. Your partner will be much less likely to accept the idea if it's introduced while one of you is angry or you're in the middle of a fight. When it's brought up during a peaceful moment between the two of you, the idea of therapy won't seem as threatening or scary to your spouse.
2. Emphasize Solutions Not Feelings
Many people, both male and female, are uncomfortable expressing their fears and vulnerabilities to their spouses, so the thought of baring their souls to a therapist often seems even more intimidating. When approaching topic of couples therapy, emphasize the need for finding solutions to your relationship problems, instead of focusing on the fact that you'll both be talking about your feelings with a third party present. After a few appointments, your partner will naturally start to open up a bit more, but to get to this point, choose the path of least resistance by focusing on the solutions aspect of therapy.
3. Only Request a One-Time Commitment
If your partner is really opposed to the idea of couples counseling, just ask for a one-time commitment. Often, the hardest part is getting a spouse to attend that first appointment, so don't present the idea of therapy with a long-term commitment attached to it. Ask your partner to attend only one session and go from there.
4. Make a List of Your Relationship Concerns
When you compose a list of your concerns, it shows that you've already thought long and hard about the issues in your relationship. This will cement the idea in your spouse's mind that couples therapy is important to you and not just a passing whim. Encourage your mate to make his own list of relationship concerns so you can both begin therapy on equal ground.
These four tips will help you present the idea of couples counseling as a positive step for both of you, rather than a punishment for your spouse. By doing so, you are much more likely to get a positive reaction from your partner when discussing your desire for therapy.Share
26 February 2015
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