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All couples experience some problems with communication, intimacy, beliefs, personality-conflicts, etc. at one time or another. Are the differences strong enough to create chaos or even the inability to co-exist? There are a few ways to assess whether your relationship needs and is ready for on-line counseling. The underlying initial question is Do I want to continue the relationship?
1. Do both partners agree that the relationship is worth saving?
If one partner has made up their mind to leave the relationship then long term therapy is not the answer although a session with a therapist to close the relationship is worth the investment. If each person wants to continue the relationship then therapy is for you.
2. If each person can admit that the issues in the relationship have not been solvable together, then a third party needs to help.
Arguing, tuning out or just existing in the same house are no way to live together. If the communication problems won’t go away or if the same argument repeats itself then a counselor will help to mend the issues.
3. Can you embrace the fact that accepting a therapist’s help isn’t a sign of weakness but a positive step forward?
Friends and family are a great resource- a good outlet if you need to share problems but they will always give subjective advice no matter what their intentions are. Often times they will be surprised and perhaps judge why you would seek a professional. Keep in mind that their judgments may have deep personal roots and that you are making a positive step. Your decision will only result in a happier partnership.
4. Do you each agree that you are responsible for the problems?
Relationships are a partnership. Placing all blame on the other is counterproductive. Even if a specific event or personality trait is what is leading you to therapy, both participants will need to explore their feelings, behavior, and reaction.
5. Are your expectations for the therapist positive and realistic?
While the therapist will help guide you, explore the origins of your behavior and feelings and give suggestions for better communication, child-rearing, intimacy, etc. it is you that needs to complete the ‘homework’ and take ownership. The therapist cannot ‘fix’ you or your relationship without your participation.
6. Are your expectations for change in the relationship realistic?
Are you ready to accept and adopt changes in behavior? Are you ready to change while (and not wait for) your partner also takes steps forward? Tell your partner that you are willing and hoping to do this for the relationship and agree that this will not be an overnight process.
The advantage to on-line counseling is that you can speak or email a counselor when the time is convenient and complete homework and experience change in a timely way.
Congratulations and enjoy the positive process.
Take Online Family Therapy or Relationship Counseling for marriage and relationship problems now.