Couples counseling is often a necessary outgrowth of family counseling. Since a family is an interrelated system, if the parents are not happy in their relationship, it will affect the rest of the family.
We work with couples to help them overcome relational blocks, showing them how to communicate effectively and resolve differences.
Often the couples we see are the parents of families we see in family counseling. But we also do marriage counseling with couples who are not family counseling parents.
The Couple That Almost Gave Up
A couple in their fifties came to Bill Jacobs LPCC seeking help. They had been married for twenty years, but the last five years had been a running battle over financial issues.
The man confessed that he was afraid his spouse would leave him. Neither of them saw any way to resolve their problems.
We asked them each a few questions to demonstrate that they did not know how the other was thinking and feeling on some of the issues they brought up. And then we proposed to help them learn how to communicate more effectively.
They wanted to know more. We began immediately.
The next session, the man asked if there was any way to reduce the anger they both experienced between the first session and this one. Talking about the issues caused them both to get angry all over again.
We explained that until the issues were resolved they could expect to feel anger. It took five years to get this angry. It wasn't realistic to expect symptoms to remit overnight.
They courageously continued on, working hard in session and out of session on homework assignments we provided.
After ten weeks the couple came in and reported that they had no more conflicts—all the problems had been talked through and resolved.
We gave them one lasting assignment: Go for coffee once a week and talk about everything that might be troubling either of them about their relationship—but do it using the new tools they had learned.