Whether they are arguing over infidelity, money issues, or how to parent together, couples therapy can help address the most challenging relationship problems. Sessions typically focus on communication skills building, empathizing, and conflict resolution.
Using approaches based on attachment theory, therapists encourage couples to access their emotional bond and restore their ability to respond to one another. The result is a long-lasting, positive change.
It’s a Safe Space
Couples counseling can help with many issues, including poor communication and feeling disconnected. Your therapist will provide you and your partner a safe space to discuss any issue affecting your relationship. This includes discussing roles in the relationship, sex, money, religious sentiments, and more. Your therapist will also work with you and your partner to break down barriers that have prevented you from talking openly and honestly about the issues in your relationship.
Fighting and arguments are standard in most relationships, but if you and your partner regularly find yourselves engaging in unhealthy conflict, it’s a good idea to consider couples therapy. Licensed marriage and family therapists (LMFT) are experts in relationships. They can help you uncover the source of your problems and improve your communication and understanding of one another.
They can also address any underlying issues contributing to your conflicts, such as personal problems or stressors. They will also teach you new methods to connect with your partner while de-escalating arguments and avoiding negative behaviors contributing to an unproductive stalemate.
It’s a Learning Experience
Many couples think that fighting is a normal part of a relationship and that they shouldn’t need therapy to help them overcome it. However, a therapist can help you and your partner learn to communicate more effectively and address the issues contributing to the conflict.
A therapist can also help you access the underlying emotions that drive your behavior. This is an essential step in learning to stop blaming each other and instead focus on solving problems.
Effective couples therapy Seattle teaches you to talk in supportive, understanding, and emotionally connected ways. This can help you reduce dysfunctional behaviors and make your relationships fun! It’s a great idea to seek marriage counseling early in your relationship to avoid potential issues. But it’s also helpful for struggling couples, especially if they’ve been having trouble for a long time. This is when a therapist can be most beneficial.
When couples come to therapy, they often share private or intimate information. For this reason, therapists need to be clear about their secret policy. Some therapists use a “no secrets” policy, which states they will not hold confidential information between two participants when the couple is in treatment together.
Other therapists may choose to take a case-by-case approach. In either case, therapists should discuss the confidentiality policy with their clients at the outset of therapy and obtain written consent to share information between the partners. Sometimes, it may be necessary to break confidentiality in situations such as suicidal thoughts or homicidal threats. It is common for a therapist to share this information with law enforcement officials to prevent potential harm to others. In these circumstances, the therapist is legally required to do so. However, the therapist must be prepared to defend the decision to disclose the information in court.
Some people feel uncomfortable with couples therapy, and their concerns are legitimate. But it’s important to remember that everyone has rough patches in their relationships. Many couples seek counseling after experiencing infidelity, financial deception, or other breaches of trust.
You and your partner will learn to communicate better and resolve conflict during treatment. Couples therapists use exercises that encourage open expression of emotions in a safe, controlled environment. These techniques are often based on Imago relationship theory and can improve emotional understanding, empathy, and closeness.
Power couple therapy also teaches you about the different brain circuits involved in relating to one another. Using an action systems lens, couples learn that over- or under-activation of these circuits creates relationship problems. It also illuminates the importance of the seeking system in long-term committed relationships, highlighting that adventure, novelty, and a sense of risk are vital to sustaining healthy love and romance.