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Could Counselling Help Your Relationship?

By: Emma Jones - Updated: 24 Oct 2010 | comments*Discuss
Counselling Counsellor Relationship

Counselling is not just for celebrities or people who have had a traumatic experience, it can also be very useful for repairing broken relationships. Many people are sceptical about counselling and wary of giving it a go. This can be for a variety of reasons but usually because they are scared of what they may find out. If you relationship is on the rocks and it has come to a make or break situation then counselling may be just the input that you need.

Making the Decision to Get Help

There are many things that can prompt a couple to get counselling. Whether one person has been unfaithful, you are struggling with the dynamics of children or work issues, or you are arguing and growing apart, there is no right reason. Often couples aren’t even sure themselves what the problem is and this is where counselling can help. There is no need to feel embarrassed or ashamed about seeking outside help. It is worse to be unhappy than admit that you have a problem.

Persuading an Unwilling Partner

Often, one partner is more keen to seek counselling than the other and this can be very frustrating. Try to understand their reluctance. Often it is not because they are being stubborn or unwilling to save the relationship but usually because they are scared. They may be scared to uncover their own feelings, to find out what you are thinking or to face the truth that the relationship may be over. Try and talk them around gently and explain how important it is to you and how much you want to save the relationship.

Finding a Counsellor

When you are going to open up your heart to someone and share your problems with them, you want it to be someone who you trust and respect. This is why it is important to find a counsellor that you both feel comfortable with. Relate (www.relate.org.uk) is the best place to start as they have listings of counsellors across the country and will help you if you cannot afford the fees. If are not happy with your counsellor on your first meeting them don’t be afraid to try a new one.

Being Open and Receptive

Although you may get both of you to the counselling session, it will no be very effective if you are not truthful about your feelings. This can take time and patience but closing yourself off will only make the process harder. Often you don’t want to admit to certain things so you don’t hurt your partner but you will do more hurt by holding them back and not giving the relationship a chance to heal. It is also natural to feel embarrassed about sharing your problems with a stranger but this is what they are trained for and they will not judge you.

Committing to Counselling

If you decide to undergo counselling then you both need to be committed to it. The end result may still be that you decide to spilt up, but at least you will know that you did everything you could to try and save the relationship. Listen to your counsellor and work on any tasks that she gives you. Make time in your busy life to make your relationship the priority and give it the attention that it deserves.

If you are unsure whether counselling is right for you then think about what the alternative is. If you are ill, you go to the doctor to fix it, if your car is broken you take it to the mechanics. Yet most people are unwilling to pay the same attention to a sick relationship. Problems don’t solve themselves and by turning to the professionals you have the chance to rekindle the reasons you got together and be happy again.

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