Lately I’ve been hearing about newly engaged couples going to counseling and I cringe. Couples counseling is not how to save your relationship – relationship education is. Because it normalizes, not pathologizes relationships.
Have you ever taken a course on long-term relationships? Probably not. Most people haven’t. Have you studied your own relationship? What are love, intimacy, sex, desire, stress, commitment, freedom, connection, and personal growth? Do you know how to take care of yourself and how relationships unfold? When you understand these topics, you will know how to save a relationship and make it thrive.
Most of us are not too screwed up to sustain a relationship once we know what one is! Then we’ll be able to focus on what’s going right, not what’s going wrong.
The process of learning and discovering new transformative information is a fun and exciting exploration. If you’re still having issues that you don’t understand once you gain more knowledge, you might need some professional guidance.
But therapy should be a last resort, not the first step.
Unfortunately, our only model is a therapeutic one that hasn’t been that successful. The divorce rate continues to rise. Seeing a therapist should be short-term in the majority of cases. The ancient Chinese proverb says it best: “Give someone a fish and it feeds them for a day. Teach someone to fish and they have food for a lifetime.” Staying away from therapy as much as possible is how to save your relationship because you need to learn how to become your own therapist.
- What are your views on divorce? (What’s your marriage history?)
- What kind of therapy do you practice? What is your paradigm?
Do you have a book recommendation?
- How long are most of your clients in therapy?
- How long have you been practicing and what’s your success rate?