You jump as your spouse slams the bedroom door. It’s been days, weeks even, since your last civil conversation. You can’t even remember the last time you held hands or went on a date.
If this sounds like your marriage, it may be helpful to consider marriage counseling. Marriage counseling has been shown to positively impact 70% of couples that take it on.
If you’re on the fence, keep reading for the nine key signs you and your spouse may need marriage counseling.
1. Poor Communication
One of the most common signs you need marriage counseling is a lack of healthy communication. It may be that communication has broken down over time. Your conversations may feel shallow or center around practical issues only, like housework.
Or it could be that, when you do talk, the conversations dissolve into arguments more often than not. And that brings us to our second key sign.
2. Constant Stress
Continuous exposure to stress can negatively impact your mental and emotional health. If you and your spouse are tense around one another, the potential for further blow-ups is going to be high.
If you’re arguing regularly, your home will not feel like a safe, relaxing space. A key sign that you’re dealing with this kind of situation is wanting to stay out of the house for as long as possible. You may find yourself leaving earlier or working later just to getaway.
3. Lack of Intimacy
Another of the key marriage counseling signs is a lack of intimacy. A desire to be intimate with your partner stems from trust, confidence, and affection. When you’re having problems, you won’t be as interested in intimacy as you might have been before.
This isn’t a reason to throw out your marriage. You may feel as though you can’t get those feelings back. But the desire for intimacy can grow stronger with help from a marriage counselor.
4. No Trust
When you lose your partner’s trust or they lose yours, it can feel like a mountainous task to get it back. But without trust, you won’t be able to communicate well.
You may find you aren’t as open to sharing your interests or worries. Being vulnerable with your partner may feel impossible or scary.
Know that, even though it’s hard, you and your partner can reestablish trust. Marriage counseling services can help you regain it and get back to having a happy marriage. It can also teach you ways to move forward and avoid losing one another’s trust again.
5. Big Life Changes
The best marriage counseling pros know that change often causes clients to seek help. Even the act of getting married can cause you to search for a marriage counselor.
Changes like getting married, moving in together, or having a baby won’t only affect you. They’ll affect the dynamics between you and your spouse, too.
You used to get up at 8:00 am, grab a quick bite, and down some much-needed coffee before heading out the door. But then you married a morning person. They’re up at 6:00 am and wake you up as they noisily prepare breakfast.
Or you and your spouse used to enjoy regular date nights to reconnect during busy weeks at work. But since the baby, all you’ve talked about is diaper changes and chores that aren’t getting done.
Change throws your rhythms out of whack. If you need help navigating new seasons, try searching for “marriage counseling near me.”
Addictions can be detrimental to a marriage, so it’s important to treat them seriously. Even minor addictions, like daily alcohol consumption, can impact your relationship.
If your spouse has any kind of addiction, counseling is something that can help them get past it. It may be beneficial for them to seek out addiction counseling first. Or, do it in tandem with any sessions you take as a couple.
7. Mental Health Issues
Similarly, mental health issues can put a huge strain on a relationship. It makes it even harder to maintain proper communication and healthy habits.
Whoever is struggling should seek help from a licensed mental health counselor. Then, going to marriage counseling can help you navigate the healing journey together
8. Dishonesty or Disloyalty
Nothing hurts a marriage like discovering dishonesty or disloyalty. You may have discovered your partner was keeping secrets or hiding an affair. In your mind, divorce may be the only option.
But finding alternatives to divorce can save you even more heartache. Not to mention the expenses of hiring a lawyer, finding a new place, and splitting up assets.
When partners hide things, there’s usually a root reason beneath it. The chances are, they still love and care for you. They just need to work through a deeper issue.
Working through these situations with a marriage counselor is a lot of work. Take time to process the situation, stepping into couples counseling when you’re ready. If you’re both willing to move forward together, you’ll be able to make it work.
9. Blaming One Another
Blame can sneak into your relationship even if you don’t mean for it to. It starts when you’re standing at the sink doing a load of dishes. You think to yourself, if my partner did more of his/her dishes, there wouldn’t be so many to do.
Then you start seeing your partner as lazy. They’re the reason the toilet is still broken. Or it’s their fault you have to do all the cooking.
Blame often comes down to miscommunication. You aren’t voicing your needs in a way your partner is receptive to. Or, your partner knows your needs but isn’t helpfully responding to them.
Catch yourself in the moments when you’re blaming your spouse. See how often you’re doing it. If the problem is persistent or causing issues between you, seek counseling.
Finding Marriage Counseling
Marriage counseling can set your relationship back on track. Divorce may seem like the easier option at first. But counseling can give you decades of happiness and satisfaction with your partner.
Counseling takes commitment and dedication. If you’re both willing to do the work, your relationship can flourish again.
Embark on the journey to a stronger marriage through a couples retreat. Learn more by getting in touch here.