When couples decide to seek marriage counseling, they may be unsure of what to expect. The first session is an important opportunity for the therapist to get to know the couple and understand their relationship issues. During this session, the therapist will discuss the basics of couples counseling, such as confidentiality, policies, and methodology. They will also ask questions to get an understanding of the couple's priorities and set goals for their sessions.
The therapist will want to know the main problems the couple is experiencing and what causes most of their stress within the relationship. This could include parenting conflicts, intimacy issues, communication problems, or other types of distress. The first session is just a starting point and will only scratch the surface of why the couple is there. It's important to note that marriage counseling doesn't necessarily require both partners to attend.
While there are many benefits of couples therapy for married couples, sometimes marriage counseling doesn't work. Knowing ahead of time what to expect from marriage therapy can help ease any anxiety or fear about going. Marriage or relationship counseling can be a goal-oriented process that helps couples move to a better place in their relationship. It can help them better understand and feel deeper empathy for each other.
Couples may even seek therapy at the beginning of a marriage; it doesn't have to be just for couples who have been married for decades.
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