Couples who are going through major issues and are not getting along may believe that marriage counseling is the answer. However, the effectiveness of marriage therapy is directly related to the level of motivation of both partners and the amount of time they are willing to invest in it. If one or both partners have “ended” the relationship, marriage counseling may not be effective. Marriage counseling should provide a safe space for both partners to express their thoughts and feelings. It is just one tool that will help you better understand the role that you and your partner play in the relationship.
However, it is important to remember that you and your partner should also do the necessary work between sessions. Sometimes problems in marriage can be too deep-seated and long-standing for counseling to be effective. Instead of investing in counseling to try to change your partner, invest in recognizing your behaviors in the relationship and look for how you want to change to improve your marriage. Marriage therapy isn't recommended for couples struggling with domestic violence or for those who are already “detached” from the relationship.