Marriage and/or Couples counseling is probably the single best thing that couples in troubled relationships or marriages can do to heal their relationship and offers them the best chance at success in overcoming the inevitable hurdles couples encounter.

Marriage counseling, also called couples therapy, helps couples – married or not – understand and resolve conflicts and improve their relationship. No marriage/relationship is perfect; each person brings his/her own ideas, values, opinions and personal history into the relationship and often they don't match their partners. Adding to this process, is the fact that most couples aren't consciously aware of these differences, so, when differences arise, he/she is surprised, caught off guard, and certainly unprepared for how to resolve the conflict.

HOW DOES COUPLES COUNSELING WORK?

Marriage counseling gives couples the tools to communicate better, negotiate differences, problem solve and even argue in a healthier way. Marriage counseling can also help couples who simply want to strengthen their bonds and gain a better understanding of each other.

HOW DO WE KNOW IF WE NEED COUNSELING?

If you're looking at this section, perhaps it's because deep down inside you, there's a nagging feeling about the state of your relationship that doesn't go away. You may not have even identified what that feeling is yet, but as you're reading this, something's ringing true for you.

Maybe you've come to a point in your relationship where you're feeling stuck, unhappy, unfulfilled, lonely, frustrated. Perhaps you're both so hurt, resentful, and angry, that all you do is argue, or worse, even when you do try to "work things out", one or both of you explodes.

Are you and/or your spouse in a second marriage and you feel there are really three people in your marriage?

Maybe you're in a long term marriage, your children have grown and moved on with their lives, and you and your spouse feel like strangers?

Keeping a marriage healthy, alive and fulfilling takes work and is often a difficult task. When a couple in a troubled relationship is able to recognize and jointly work out their differences, it's wonderful. This process is seldom easy, however, and once problems have become chronic, partners may feel angry, scared, or betrayed by the other, making compromise feel unwanted or even unsafe. In such cases having the benefit of a professional who is highly skilled, objective, and empathic, who is attuned and listens intently, while remaining neutral and not taking sides, can help you to improve communication, work through differences and begin the process of problem solving and healing, often making the difference between a marriage that fails and one that recovers itself.

WHAT WILL WE DO IN OUR SESSION?

Couples counseling takes place in the safe and protected haven offered by a marital or couples therapist, in an atmosphere where each individual is supported by the therapist in order to feel free to talk about their hurts, disappointments, fears. A good therapist provides a trustworthy and safe environment which can contain and manage couples' anger, frustration and contempt, while limiting angry and hysterical emotional displays, and promoting calm problem solving. In general, therapists provide a space in which it becomes possible for couples to step out of defensiveness and work on problems in a productive and rational manner. A skilled marriage therapist offers support and intervention that can help distrusting, disengaged partners to safely address their difficulties.