Marriage is perhaps the most important relation in an adult’s life. That’s why it needs extra care and attention, especially when things are not exactly gung ho. This is where marriage or marital therapy comes in.
Marriage counselling is the process of counselling the married couple to recognize and to reconcile or at least manage differences and repeating patterns of stress upon the marital relationship.
Basic practices of marital therapy
- The basic practices of marital therapy focus primarily on the process of communicating. Counselors use a method called active listening.
- Another method used is called “Cinematic immersion”. Both these methods have one important thing in common- they help counselors create a safe environment where each partner can express feelings and hear the feelings of the other.
- Emotionally focused therapy for couples or EFT-C is also used. This is based on attachment theory and uses emotion as an agent of change and target, both.
- Behavioral couples’ therapy is another method used. It is actually a proven way out of marital discord. This method focuses on integrating the twin goals of acceptance and change for couples in therapy.
The successful couples usually make concrete changes to accommodate the needs of the partner and also show greater emotional acceptance of the other.
Role of the relationship counselor
A couple therapist is usually someone with a degree in psychiatry or counseling. And her primary role is to listen, understand and facilitate better communication between the couple. The counselor also:
- Provides a confidential tete-a tete, which normalizes feelings
- Enables each partner to be heard and to hear themselves
- Works as a mirror to reflect the marriage’s difficulties to the partners
- Outlines the potential and direction for change
- Delivers important information
- Improves communication
- Identifies the repetitive, negative interaction cycle that drives a problematic marriage as a pattern
- Understands the source of emotions behind that negative pattern
- Re-organizes these key emotional responses to offset the pattern
- Creates new patterns of interaction
- Increases emotional attachment between partners
When should you seek marital therapy?
- When you avoid communicating or your communication has become negative- This usually means bad language, verbal abuse, and sometimes physical abuse.
- When you or your partner have sought out other sexual partners – Marital therapy can save a marriage after an affair if both partners want and work out the kinks in their relationship.
- Lack of intimacy in the marriage- This is the stage when partners just occupy the same space without communication, or exchange of feelings or touch.
Marriage counseling is a long process. And another thing to remember is that it can’t save a marriage that is unsalvageable. So, go in for marital therapy with an aim to do what’s the best for you and your partner.
In case you have a concern or query you can always consult a specialist
& get answers to your questions!