Many people feel daunted or intimidated at the mere thought of talking to a counsellor about their relationship problems. I would like to alleviate any fears by explaining more about what counsellors do and what to expect so that more couples feel the courage to move forward in getting the help and support they need.
Like many counsellors, I offer a free 15-30-minute telephone consultation. Usually one partner (but preferably both) will make the enquiry. It is useful to write down questions you wish to ask before the call. This initial conversation is to see if you and the counsellor feel comfortable with each other in order to form a therapeutic alliance.
The First Session
Most clients feel vulnerable and anxious at the mere thought of disclosing the intimate details of their relationship. Some clients are excited and hopeful while others may feel hopeless. In my practice, I always offer my warmth and openness. I believe strongly that by being non-judgemental, warm and accepting are the key attributes in helping clients feel at ease, helping them open up to explore their goals in counselling.
Who Is The Client?
Both of you as a couple are the client. The counsellor’s role is working with you as a couple and your relationship. The counsellor will facilitate the sessions giving both partners an equal opportunity of time and expression to articulate their feelings.
What if One Partner Is Unable to Make the Session?
It is important that both partners attend as both of you together are the client. Life events can get in the way and while therapy is recommended on a consistent basis you can agree alternative arrangements with your therapist.
Things to Expect from Couples Counselling
Counsellors have no silver bullet. What they will do is help couples explore their relationship, changes that occurred and the desired goals. The role of the counsellor is not to change you but to facilitate the evolution of the dynamics of the relationship as you explore ways that you can improve your communication to help your relationship grow and develop in ways beneficial to you both.
Do We Need to Stay Together?
The choice on whether to stay in or leave the relationship is outside the counsellors role. The counsellor’s remit is to work with both of you on your goals.
Please get in touch with me for a free consultation
In couples counselling, the counsellor is seeking to explore and to help couples change the dynamics of the relationship. It is not about changing the client or their personality, although growth usually occurs in clients and the relationship through the process of counselling. Please feel free to reach out to me if you think your relationship can benefit from couples counselling. I also offer counselling for couples who wish to break-up amicably. firstname.lastname@example.org