Couples therapy (also referred to as marriage counseling) is a type of psychotherapy aimed at helping couples recognize and resolve conflicts in order to improve their marital relationships. Depending on the marriage problems driving you to seek therapy, marriage counseling can help you make thoughtful decisions to rebuild your relationship or even part ways amicably where the problems are irreconcilable.
Traditionally, marriage counseling has been provided by licensed therapists working in institutions or in private practice. With the advancement in Internet technology, the interaction between a therapist and the client doesn't have to be physical anymore. As a matter of fact, online therapy has gained worldwide acceptance as a convenient and easy-to-access form of counseling. The online therapists available on the virtual therapist network are fully trained, experienced, and licensed to handle every kind of marital problems you may be having.
Warning signs of a Troubled Marriage
Being in a position to identify the indicators of a troubled marriage before it is too late can give you a unique opportunity to seize the moment and turn your marriage around. The main problem in marriages are people waiting too long before they can find a therapist for professional help. Problems that could have otherwise been solved in a few sessions become crises that threaten to break up healthy marriages.
The following are some of the indicators your marriage is headed the wrong direction and online therapy might be warranted:
- Dwindling affection and warmth for each other
- Insufficient time together and feelings of loneliness
- Reducing levels of intimacy
- Selfishness and reduced commitment in your marriage
- The blame game, contempt, and frequent conflicts
While these signs may not appear all at once, seeing any one of them should prompt you to seek professional guidance and support.
Benefits of Marriage Counseling
Because of their personalities, exposure, and false optimism, some people stay in unhappy marriages until they sink into resentment where the only viable option is divorce. By not voicing your unhappiness, but rather going with the flow hoping things will straighten up, you may find yourself deep in a marriage chasm and unable to pull yourself out. This is where online therapy comes in and can give your marriage a chance by way of professional assistance.
Some of the unique benefits you will enjoy in marriage counseling include:
Healthy Conflict Resolution - Among the things you will learn in couples therapy is communication skills. You will be trained on how to express yourself, be a good listener, and process what your partner is saying before reacting. This is essential in conflict resolution.
Non-Offensive Assertion – When discussing issues in the family context, the fear of hurting the other person becomes more real with every word said. Marriage counseling will help you to put forward your request without making undue demands that may spark conflict.
Working through and Processing Unresolved Issues – Marriage counseling provides a safe haven for expressing your feelings but doesn't guarantee every argument or contentious issue will be resolved amicably. However, in the face of unresolved marriage problems, the sound advice and strategies you will learn from your online therapist will help you to either cope or leave the marriage without a sense of guilt or anger.
A Deeper Understanding of Your Partner – A marriage therapist can open your understanding and help you to appreciate the needs of your spouse. This, in turn, makes it relatively easy to establish a connection within the marriage.
In addition to the above benefits, a marriage counselor will teach you relationship skills, mediate conflict, monitor your progress, as well as give objective feedback. This will help you to see and acknowledge the progress you are making.
How to Prepare and What to Expect in Marriage Counseling
As opposed to conventional counseling where a physical meet-up is a must, the only preparation required for online therapy is to find a therapist who is experienced and a good fit for you. At the Virtual Therapist Network, this simply requires a short registration and then browsing through the profiles of online therapists available for their educational qualifications, levels of experience, fees, and treatment plans. This will give you a clear picture of what to expect when you actually book an online therapy session.
In many cases, your online therapist may work with other care providers in cases where you or your partner is going through issues like substance abuse or mental illness. This will ensure you benefit from a comprehensive spectrum of treatment.
Your partner may object to the whole idea of online therapy. However, this shouldn't prevent you from attending online sessions because ultimately both of you will benefit more from the invaluable advice and learning you've been given.
Since marriage problems vary in magnitude and dynamics, your online counseling session(s) may either be short term or long term. Your main focus should be on the end result and what you stand to gain as opposed to the duration it takes.
A troubled marriage is one of those nightmares no couple wants to find themselves in. This is precisely why the Virtual Therapist Network has brought together professional marriage counselors to help you with your marriage problems.