Hacking the Code of Marital Conflict

6 Common Questions About Couples Counseling ANSWERED

Many couples face challenges in their relationship, which can range from communication problems to infidelity.

If you’re having trouble communicating with your partner, managing conflict, experiencing a loss of trust, or feeling disconnected, it may be time to consider couples counseling. Seeking help is a sign of strength, and can prevent more serious problems from developing down the line.

I’m Sarah Watt, a couples therapist at Silver River Counseling, and in this article, we’ll explore 6 common questions about couples counseling.

Emotions University

Knowing about emotions is a life game-changer, and we believe it should be accessible to everyone. Enroll today!

How Long Does Couples Counseling Take?


The length of time varies depending on the couple and the issues they’re facing. Some couples may see improvement after just a few sessions, while others may need to continue therapy for several months or even years.

The approach that appears to be most helpful in couples work is to look to your counselor as a resource, both in facing the present issues and into the future if a need arises. We all need resources and tools in our toolbox and having a good couples counselor, that you trust, can be an invaluable resource in the future.

Will Couples Therapy Work For Us?


One thing to consider in making it a success is being committed to doing the work both inside and outside of the sessions. In my experience, the couples who invest the time in effort in couples counseling get the best return.

Are Our Relationship Issues Too Much of a Problem to Be Fixed?


Couples therapists are often asked something close to this in the process of therapy and it is not appropriate for them to respond with anything other than support and guidance towards the goals identified.

Ultimately, it is up to the individuals to decide whether or not they should stay together or part ways.

If they should choose to part ways this too can be addressed with support of a couples counselor, the goal would simply change from one of staying together to one of peaceful separation.

What If There’s So Much Hostility We Cannot Stand to Be in the Same Room?


The counselor may make a decision to have you both meet individually if the tension is too high to be productive in the same space.

There are often times when longer session times may also be recommended to accommodate this need and work towards a goal of being able to process with both parties present.

What If There is a History of Domestic Violence or Substance Abuse Issues?


Following the initial intake it will be recommended that meetings take place individually for a time until safety and boundaries are well established and appear to be consistently honored.

If these issues are denied by one party but shared in confidence by the other, discretion will be used to approach this matter with the utmost care and attention to safety. 

What If My Partner Doesn’t Want to Go to Couples Counseling?


Couples therapy takes an active commitment from both parties so if this is not the case starting out, the therapist will most likely recommend individuals in lieu of couples until a time both can agree to the therapeutic couples process.

It can be difficult if your partner is resistant to seeking help, but it’s important to remember that you can still benefit from therapy even if your partner doesn’t participate. Begin your therapy process and work towards your goals.

Your strength and changes in your own recovery can trickle down to change in your home and in your relationship. Even if only one party is working you can start making gains for the better of you both.

If you think your relationship can be supported and strengthened with couples counseling, schedule an appointment with us at Silver River Counseling today. I would love to work with you towards your relationship goals.