He thought marriage counseling should be all about educating a couple; “they don’t need therapy” he used to say. It is the same today for our courses. They offer practical understanding, when asked. I say you can use ‘what got you here’ as an incentive to do what you need to do, starting now. In reality, it does damage to both individuals, and the marriage as a whole. Not to write on a screen. You want to find out why its happening. The deep study of free will precludes anyone from intruding on the free will of the other. This is not the case for marriage. They may present their ideas in a “sophisticated” way, but ideas are not enough. This terrible marriage advice would have completely ruined my marriage, and mostly because I’d still be single if I … They share schools of “consensus”, not factually based knowledge. People get married and treat each other like they treat everyone else; but worse, due to what I call over-familiarity. Doesn’t that make sense? It is just human nature to make our complaints really sound good so we get sympathy…right? They help create a more positive context for great losses or trauma. Not just words on paper, that wouldn’t help anyone. I say that knowing that many readers did split before. If you come home disagreeing with your spouse saying, “Well, my therapist said…” then you need to become a little more aware of the influence your individual therapy is having on your marriage. So, the difference between the psychological profession and hard science professions is that any M.D. How you will feel is terrible, as you relive the painful experiences. Good therapists for marriages, never try to solve problems, or even help couples solve their problems. Individual therapy is often very helpful. Then we can look at problems that may need addressing. Here is one example I have heard over the years from more than one couple: “We’ve been married 20 years and it has been pretty bad, but now I have no desire to work on the relationship and I am ready for divorce.” They went together for years of bad marriage counseling that didn’t help, yet they still stayed together. When you are married you have the perfect set-up for selfless service, love, and consideration. Their profession has no business claiming they can help marriages. That’s an unspoken, and important, expectation. Many of the above mistakes in marriage actually seem “normal” to you, especially the ‘loving your kids more than your spouse’. Sign up for the Shabbat Shalom newsletter and more! It means there is a build up of knowledge, and a lot of “testing” of protocols. Nicholas 5 years ago As a counselor in training, I find your points very interesting. “A few years ago I started seeing an individual therapist…” she begins. “My sister in law made an appointment for marriage counseling because her husband greeted their dog before her when coming home from work.” — Freyja_the_derpyderp. They know they cannot help your marriage, but they want the income. You need to learn about marriage and all the components that together make for a happy and fulfilling marriage. Its every man for them self. Why is getting to know you or the “problems” necessary for a therapist to help your marriage? We skip the symptoms, and go to the heart of “why” your marriage is failing, and what you need to now do to stop the slide towards divorce, and redirect your efforts to love and harmony for the rest of your lives. Put it this way. What are your expectations from other professionals? 1. Their “new and improved” is a cover-up, nothing more. Our programs are definite, clear, understandable, and effective. Issues and problems you experience today will simply cease to exist once your marriage’s underlying dynamics are marriage friendly. That’s a “hard data” reality. Your marriage problem isn’t. They laughed, and said my efforts to keep them ‘consistent’ was like herding cats. whatever), that got you serious about trying to fix things, might by some people be used as an excuse to give up. It seems logical, I know! For me, one of the biggest impacts of determining my Enneagram type was the understanding it brought to my marriage. I hope we can help yours. From our experience with couples facing infidelity, they don’t want a lengthy book to read. Creating parapets of protection is another part of what you need to learn, as this is part of the underlying dynamics. The same kind of expectations are reasonable for a plumber, computer repair person, dentist, or doctor. Marriage is not a business, where problems need immediate solutions. Its not even close to the same as a medical degree. The key to happiness is always rooted in love, no matter what. Psychologists are not like medical doctors or licensed plumbers; who have to prove they know what they are doing in order to be licensed. The underlying dynamics of your marriage are always the roots of the problems. Then, as is the nature of a healthy marriage, things only get better from there; every single day. can evaluate your body’s health using specific tests of various organs, and by using the same tests and analysis all other M.D.s use. Psychological studies are loose, at best, often building on ideas they found, and liked, in other ‘loose’ studies, that were “accepted” by an academic board. : The Five Step Action Plan to Saving Your Marriage, available for download at www.theRelationshipRabbi.com/is-my-marriage-over. Further proof is that even wealthy people, who generally have access to the “best” of everything, suffer from the same rate of unhappiness and divorce. Some therapists claim they are needed for negotiation and arbitration; they think it is their role. This email was flirty and sexual in nature, but could be considered harmless. Even marriage counselors who have good reputations are not usually good at helping marriages. Similarly, when you work on the underlying dynamics of your marriage, the problems (a therapist wants to address) will disappear as a matter of course. For marriages, they have to wing it. Psychologists also help individuals who undergo extreme experiences in their life. So, many couples who trusted the traditional route, and could afford it, are now watching their families get torn apart. Which brings me back to Jean, our therapist. There are four primary “aspects” to marriage. Use the breakdown, big or small, as a warning, instead of a sign that your marriage is over. We also have two books. They may have a wise “look”. Do you not see that is a conflict in reason? There are two online programs, one for women, another for men, and both include access to our specially trained counselors. MyDomaine's Editorial Guidelines. When the soil is healthy, everything grows as it should. Give your marriage your all before you consider giving up. Psychologists’ main role, on the other hand, are for testing for clinical purposes. They expect a marriage counselor would draw from a “body of knowledge” that all therapists draw from… But its not the case. But are either of those enough value for the time and money you have to dish out? By Emily Novak and Echo Garrett . Although marriage therapists and counselors' primary goal is to help you improve your relationship, that isn't always possible. You and your spouse are too intricately interlaced, and this at a very deep level. Each must address their own flaws in their own time, in their own way. But therapists refer to “foundational” studies that don’t specifically relate to marriage problems, nor do they give good indicators for treatments. Because he taught counseling at the collage level his aim, before he passed, was to introduce our principles and techniques to his students. It leads to insecurity and second-guessing. The fees are asked me out on Sunday I did five more. (opens in a new window). In marriage, the happier you try to make your spouse, the better off you both will be. When one does something that terribly hurts the other, or their marriage,  the “reasons why”, the causes, are always traceable to things lacking in the couple’s underlying lack of understanding, and it shows up in the way they behave. Its not just an “opinion”, The contention I began with when I shifted my practice is simplicity itself. This should be practical, understandable, and clear. The only psychological part of marriage is individual. A court may hire a psychologist to test for insanity, or a person’s ability to handle money etc. Marriage is intrinsically different from any other venue in our lives. There is the ever present narcissism, attachment to mother, workaholic, etc. That’s not a Hallmark invention, its the truth. The Enneagram helped bring focus and understanding to the intricacy of our differences. Otherwise, getting to know you is useless for saving your marriage, and moreover, it is invasive. Enough is enough. Good marriage counselors know it isn’t the problems that are wrong with a marriage. The above is the “fools gold” that some claim as success. Add to that your general lack of patience with each other and the fact that trust is very low. If even half of the myriad ideas concocted by Western psychologists about marriage were useful the divorce rate would be much lower than it is today. Sign up for our Shabbat Shalom e-newsletter, a weekly roundup of inspirational thoughts, insight into current events, divrei torah, relationship advice, recipes and so much more! The underlying dynamics of your marriage are THE supreme cause of either. Each program contains about 40 videos and additional text supplements. If you have to be the one who has to heal your marriage by yourself, please read this informative article. And those few who are truly good are hard to find. She was done with her marriage and there was no possible way I could even invite her to do couples work with her husband. Realizing our errors and struggling to change ourselves is not the easiest thing to do, but because of whats at stake its the most rewarding thing to do. Remember, its a business. Whatever you do, don’t let your therapist destroy your marriage! There are some counselors who will keep you in counseling for months or years with the “promise” of a better future or better “you”. While before he had hope that the relationship could improve, he was now convinced she had a “disorder” and there was no point in trying anymore as she was the one with the problem, not him. Again, because there are no universal approaches in their “soft” profession. Yet, you think you “‘know” what will help your marriage, even though it is in big trouble, with your thinking? If you go to marriage counseling, you will be PREPARED to make the most of it. #4: Find Someone Who Completes You . Hard data is good for organizations like ours, because our counselors can tell parents how their children are likely to do if they get a divorce, when asked. Most marriages heal quickly. Most couples who try traditional couples counseling stagnate, suffer even more, or end their marriage altogether. Both of you are individual and complicated people. The other day someone told me the marriage counselor she and her husband were seeing worked wonders. Like with any and all businesses “buyer beware” has to be included in the vetting process. How can you fit enough useful information into forty-five minutes, or forty-five days. That is “it” in very simple form. Cathy Meyer. In fact, a better alternative can save you from a lot more pain and probably save your marriage. ADHD is Ruining My Marriage. When your thoughts, attitudes and behaviors are intentionally shifted into “marriage friendly” expressions everything seamlessly shifts into a happy marriage mode. From a sexless marriage to money issues, ... 9 Bad Habits That Could Ruin Your Marriage. No, but I am advising you to be aware of the issues that may occur if you are seeing one. I certainly learned a thing or two from reading it. You must proactively do your part. How you see your own actions and past experiences is unique, subconsciously edited, and highly filtered. What is causing them to wear unevenly has to be pinpointed. Yes, there are some “typical” processes most traditional marriage counselors use. “My uncle and his wife, reasoning:she lost a frying pan.” — DangDog_crapper_god. Your marriage is important! At the end of the day, a marriage that you both want and are excited about, that should be your goal. Whenever you start on our program, that is exactly the right time; it does not matter when. If you want to save your marriage, for the love of God, don't go to marriage counseling. Traditional marriage counseling is all so “flimsy”. Nearly every reliable source confirms the statistical “success” rate therapists score for “helping” couples rejuvenate their marriage is well under 10%. The intelligence and efforts required to obtain a medical degree are much greater, as are the licensing requirements. Marriage is not like anything else. While there are certain events that can push a marriage over the edge (Related: Stuck in a Lousy Marriage), many couples are successfully able to weather a lousy marriage for a long time. There are, at times, such horrendous behaviors that are rooted in deep mental sickness, or evil. My track record is in the high 90 percent range of achieving “miracles”. It does not allow for venting or watching people. Here are three ways in which individual therapy may make your relationship issues worse: I am amazed at how therapists can draw conclusions about the other spouse without ever meeting him or her. No matter how well a therapist gets to know you, or your problems, they will never really know you. Today is the worst day of my life, and have no friends I can share my pain with. Worse still, it is common for one spouse to feel that the therapist is able to provide the warm, understanding, and available presence he or she is looking for in the marriage. But it is a tragic error to do so; it is “taking sides”. Whether or not it was true, those words had a profound effect on the husband and it forever tarnished the way he viewed his wife. The “body of knowledge” defines all of the above, and professionals draw from it as part of their work. When I told her how unusual it was, from my experience, for marriage counselors to actually help marriages she said: “Oh, she, (the marriage counselor), wasn’t able to help us stay together, we’re filing for divorce at the end of the week, but we really like her.”. We cannot change the past. Because there are no “practical” qualifications. You learn how to be yourselves in a “married” way. You may try them free, individually, or as a bundle. It is extraordinary! You could be very wrong. After grueling (and expensive) months of little or no positive progress, therapists finally sent their clients to me, or to a family law lawyer (especially if they had screwed up by taking sides) to get a divorce. And I can’t afford that so I guess my relationship is history.We all have different reasons for our problems. I do not believe all individual therapy is harmful for a marriage. They just wanted more clients. Almost anything that “happened in the past” (from infidelity, to lying, to …. Then everything else can, and will, spring from the happiness you share. Diversity is not an advantage. With all of the stress that is going on in the world and in the news coupled with managing work, the family, and all of your day to day responsibilities it’s no wonder that so many of you feel anxious! An example of a ‘whole living organism’ is the human body. I miss him. Forget the “elephant in the room” idea; it does not apply to your marriage. Of course not. “Not me but my buddy’s wife demanded counseling after he refused to ‘fix’ his habit of leaving the seat up. Their claims are false. When I was a divorce mediator, virtually all of my clients were referred to me by therapists who tried but failed to help couples stay together. But that’s one of the big problems. Confidential reasons for me that I need to talk about. In other cases you could unknowingly end up with a “seasoned” therapist who is on their 3rd or 4th unhappy marriage; you don’t know. You eliminate a problem behavior and voila, you do better, and prosper. If you are seeing an individual therapist for your marriage, the best thing you can do is focus on your personal issues. For details and next steps on what it looks like to prioritize your relationship in practical ways, check out my latest book: Choosing Marriage. You should be able to expect that any professional you hire, for whatever purpose, can do what you want done, according to basic knowledge; and not use you as a source of income, or for their own experimentation. We want you to be so happy that you can’t take it! 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