5 Reasons To Go To Couples Therapy
When you first fall in love with someone, life can feel close to perfect for a while. But then the high of new love wears off and life starts to return to “normal”… and that’s where the real relationship begins.
Let’s face it… relationships can be hard work. Even the most perfectly-matched partnerships require work to communicate, meet one another’s needs, and work through differences in styles and approaches to life. Therapy can help you and your significant other address some of these challenges in a safe and neutral environment.
If you’re wondering if couples therapy might be helpful for your relationship, check out these reasons why couples work with a therapist can be beneficial and see if any of these might be challenges you’re facing.
Coping With a Major Relationship Challenge
One of the biggest reasons couples come to therapy together is to deal with a significant setback in their relationship. This might include an affair or some other betrayal, one partner feeling less committed to the future of the relationship, or a significant loss that the relationship has experienced.
By working with a couples therapist, you and your partner can have a safe space to identify and explore all of the emotions you might be experiencing as a result of this setback. Your therapist will also help each of you learn to listen to one another, manage your reactions to what your partner is sharing, and create realistic expectations of each other to support healing after this setback.
Getting On The Same Page
Whether it’s related to parenting, finances, or sexual intimacy, there are bound to be disagreements whenever two people try to tackle life together… One person is a spender and one is a saver… one parent wants more rules and the other parent wants more freedom for the kids… one partner wants to be intimate much more often than the other… It’s somewhat of a stereotype but there’s a reason these three topics (finances, parenting, and sex) are the most common reasons couples seek therapy together.
Couples therapy can help partners talk through their thoughts and feelings about these topics, address the disagreements, and come together to find a compromise in how they reconcile these differences.
Making A Major Life Decision
Relationships can be strained when major life decisions need to be made. This could include things like relocating to a different area, deciding to change your living situation, wanting to leave a job (a decision that could impact finances), or whether or not to have kids.
When making major life decisions like this, it can be helpful to have a neutral space to explore all of your options. A couples therapist can help you and your partner describe all of the things you might be worried about related to the big decision and figure out a plan forward together.
Preparing for A Big Life Change
Whether planned or not, big life changes such as getting married, buying a home, or preparing for a child can pose unique challenges for couples to navigate. During these times, couples might find themselves fighting more often as they enter into these changes.
Couples therapy can help both of you learn how to communicate what your needs are and set (or reset) realistic expectations about the situation and each other.
Learning How to Fight Fairly
Conflict is unavoidable in relationships. It’s impossible for two people to go through life together without having some heated disagreements along the way. Moreover, partners often have different styles of fighting… one partner is overly-aggressive or passive aggressive… or one partner is a people-pleaser and avoids confrontation… or one partner doesn’t hold themselves accountable and always blames the other person.
A couples therapist can help two people learn how to fight fairly. Using skills like “I” statements, active listening, and sticking to the topic at hand can help a couple stay calm and approachable as they work through their conflict.
Healthy relationships require long-term investments in each other. Couples therapy can help with this in a variety of ways, including building new communication skills, learning how to listen to one another, and finding activities to help rebuild the connection between you and your partner.
This Valentine’s Day, you can give your relationship a gift. Check out more about couples therapy at Lincoln Park Therapy Group and reach out to us to schedule a time to meet with one of our therapists. We’re here for you and we’d love to help.