In a perfect world they might not be necessary, but as it is, couples counseling practitioners are in high demand. In that city and elsewhere, struggling marriages are an all-too common problem. A major reason behind struggling unions is adultery. Particularly these days, when nearly everyone is on Facebook or participating in some kind of online socializing, putting more importance on a digital relationship than one does into their own marriage is an evergrowing reality. Infidelity, however, doesn’t have to spell the end of a marriage. Whether that is the ideal approach or not, couples counseling can help heal the wound or enable a couple to part as respectfully and cordially as possible.
One statistic frequently bandied about is that 50 percent of all marriages in the united states end in divorce. While this is correct overall, we have to look at other factors such as age and whether it’s a first, second or third marriage. By way of example, only 5-6% of marriages between people aged 35 to 39 end in divorce when compared with 35-40% of marriages when the people are 20 to 24 years of age.
Social networking is a contributing factor in this high rate, especially for younger couples. It’s easy to place a wedge between a couple when there are so many comforting and supportive (virtual) buddies to be made. This is not to criticize social media sites, but to emphasize the importance of creating and maintaining trust and communication within a marital partnership. A counselor can help with this.
Unfaithfulness can wreck a marriage in addition to masking other potentially hidden troubles lurking in a person’s psyche. Down the road, the spouse who was cheated on may feel hurt, angry, depressed, vengeful, etc. The person may decide to attempt to save the relationship or may want to end it. Either way, couples counseling helps people sort out the issues and ease a transition.
When addressing infidelity, a couples counselor is preferable to an individual therapist or psychiatrist. They are specially qualified to fully explore the issues that steer people to cheat rather than skim the surface. Relationship therapy functions in stages:
•Throughout the trauma stage, the betrayed spouse and the offender experience a whirlwind of feelings and potentially physical symptoms of depression
•Learning and talking about what led to the affair is the next phase. It is still emotionally draining and psychologically stressful, but both parties are able to speak more clearly
•After the issues are identified, working on them is the next and perhaps lengthiest period of counseling. Feelings are more controllable, and this is where people decide to work on the marriage to save it or end it amicably
Though it depends on the pair, this process often lasts up to two years. If both people involved want to save the marriage, the time commitment required is a small price to pay. Relationships can be saved after adultery, but this takes communication, complete honesty, and a great deal of hard work. While healing a marriage after infidelity is one element of a counselor’s work, relationship counseling can benefit strong marriages as well. In a healthy marriage, each partner is able to listen and properly defuse conflict, and understands and values their spouse’s opinions and feelings. By helping to reinforce these positives, a marriage can only grow stronger.
Locating a recognized, specially trained couples or relationship counselor might take a little research, but they’re out there. Feeling at ease with the therapist is extremely important, so select wisely. It just may be the best choice you ever make.