“Jack” met “Jill”. Everything was great! Jack would spend his day at work, come home, and spend the whole evening with Jill. He loved her and enjoyed this time with Jill.
Jill felt the same way. She absolutely loved Jack! Jill loved spending every moment of her day with him – once he came home from work. She would call her friends and brag about Jack. Almost every day! But she stopped seeing her friends as much. They were just getting in the way of her time with Jack. Soon, the phone calls happened less and less.
Jack and Jill spent so much time together that they only went to work and spent time with each other. They loved each other that much. But they lost touch with their friends. And their hobbies.
Over time, they grew distant. One day, Jack and Jill were arguing – again. Jill felt like she had to keep repeating herself. Jack just didn’t listen. At all. She felt disrespected and like she wasn’t important to Jack anymore. She felt isolated from her friends and stuck in the relationship.
Jack felt like he could say and do nothing right. At all. All that he ever heard from Jill was what he was doing wrong. He felt like she didn’t see what he was doing for the relationship. He just wanted the conversation to end so they could move forward with the relationship.
Neither of them liked arguing. They just couldn’t stop. They didn’t know what to do. Finally, Jill told Jack to move out. And was serious. They realized that their relationship was failing, but that they lost their friends and hobbies.
Jack and Jill didn’t want the relationship to end. They just didn’t know what to do.
Jack and Jill are like most couples that can benefit from couples counseling.
Ways Couples Therapy Can Help Jack and Jill:
1) Frequent Arguments are Reduced
Every couple disagrees at some point. But having the same argument over and over means the underlying frustration, concerns, etc. aren’t being addressed. Couples counseling can help uncover the root of these arguments.
2) Couples Therapy Increases Effective Communication
Couples counseling can also help couples learn to argue more effectively. There are several common roadblocks couples face in arguments. Seeing a counselor can help highlight these difficulties without judgement and help teach more effective ways to communicate.
3) Couples Therapy Provides a Neutral Perspective
In some arguments, Jill was right. In others, Jack was right. Sometimes they were both wrong… and right. Sorting through everything can be confusing. Especially when you are in the middle of it. A trained counselor remains neutral and provides objective feedback – to both people in the couple. This leads to everyone feeling validated, heard, and understood.
4) Couples Therapy Can Positively Change Your View of Your Partner
If you ever bought a new (to you) vehicle, you probably started seeing that color or make and model all over the road. You were familiar with that car, so you see it all over the road. The same thing happens in relationships. When we start to see the negatives about our partner, couples counseling can help us shift to seeing more positives.
5) Objective Accountability
Meeting with someone weekly can provide accountability. I mean, who really wants to tell a counselor they argued. Again. Especially when they just learned how to disagree better? Sometimes that alone can help both partners to communicate better. Even when progress is slow, your counselor can help you find ways forward without criticism or judgement.
The foundation of any quality, long-term relationship is friendship. Let’s face it, no one wants to wake up and dread seeing their partner. Instead, don’t we want to enjoy spending time with our partner? Don’t we – ideally – want to know them well, and for them to know us well? Couples counseling can help re-kindle that spark of friendship and help it grow.
So Now What?
Jack and Jill had a pretty typical relationship. When problems showed up the relationship started to fall apart. It happens. Even when a relationship seems pretty far gone, couples counseling can help both people find new ways of relating to each other. These same skills can help a pretty good relationship go great!