Often couples come to Chenal Family Therapy PLC seeking counseling as a last ditch effort to save their relationship. By this time they have been through months, if not years, of off-and-on conflict, detachment, or even possibly an affair. Sorting through the resentment and rebuilding trust can make therapeutic exercises a challenge, much more so than if they could have identified the issue and sought out couples counseling earlier.
Instead of waiting until it may be too late, be on the lookout for these four common challenges that can lead to much larger relationship problems:
1. You’re frequently bickering about the same issues
All couples have disagreements. The point of couples counseling isn’t to teach you how to not argue or never get upset with one another. Couples counseling helps you learn how to reach compromises and communicate effectively in order to resolve problems. If you find that you are having heated disagreements often or old issues keep getting brought up then it is likely that these are unresolved issues and past resentments that a couples therapist will help you work through.
2. You’re not as close as you once were
It’s common for couples to feel disconnected at times. Work stress, kids, and other responsibilities can take a toll on every relationship. These stresses create distance overtime. At its worst, a couple may feel they are simply roommates sharing daily tasks. Couples counseling will teach you how to make time for each other and rebuild your connection. You might even find that by strengthening your relationship you’re better able to handle life stress in general.
3. Your goals and interests have changed
Sometimes as we grow as individuals, we grow apart in relationships. For example, what was once a fun activity for both of you may no longer be interesting to your partner. Or maybe one of you has decided to switch careers or go back to school. These changes can be challenging to navigate and leave you frustrated with your partner. Couples counseling helps you learn how to support each other and respect your differences before resentment and doubt builds.
4. You find yourself (or your partner) keeping secrets
Everyone has a right to privacy and autonomy, even when in a relationship. It’s expected that some things will be kept to yourself, but it is damaging to your relationship when that information impacts your significant other and you’re intentionally being deceptive in order to avoid confrontation. This can include hiding your spending habits, addiction, and cheating. Many times there are other issues occurring in the relationship and this is the clearest sign that you and your partner need couples counseling. Trust and respect are just as important as communication in a healthy relationship and a good couples therapist will help you rebuild what was lost due to deception.
By identifying one or more of these early on you will be better able to seek help before you’re at a breaking point and greatly improve your chances of safeguarding your relationship from future stress. These signs can be applied to any relationship, whether you are married or in a committed relationship to your partner. Every couple faces challenges that are unique to their relationship, and at Chenal Family Therapy our therapists specialize in providing individualized treatment.
Sarah Umphries, MS, LPE-I
Chenal Family Therapy PLC – Texarkana
For scheduling with Chenal Family Therapy please reach out to our scheduling team 501-781-2230.