Do you want your marriage to work but it is headed towards becoming a disaster? It is definitely workable, says Relationship Counselor Dr. Nisha Khanna.
The definition of marriage is very dynamic and evolving. The foundation of each and every marriage should be strong. Many times due to various reasons the stability of a marriage is questioned. The role of a counselor comes into play when a marriage is going through tough times. The role of a counselor is that of a catalyst as it helps couples to solve their problems.
Marriage counseling can be beneficial to couples even when the problem is not that significant. It can still help couples who are finding it difficult to maintain a smooth married life. Seeking help before things gets very difficult to handle is advisable.
Areas in which a counselor can help:
Communication is the foundation of each and every relationship. A counselor can only play an important role in zooming up the process. It is an established fact that most problems that arise in any relationship are mainly due to lack of communication. Active listening is one of the techniques that the counselor can undertake to help couples learn effective ways to communicate. A Marriage counselor helps you express your thoughts, feelings and needs in a way that is respectful for both.
Communication has 3 important aspects:
We know the importance of active listening. Active hearing also tends to work on the same lines. Hearing is non-conscious component of communication.
Active listening is a major part of any counseling session as it involves focusing on the information consciously. It requires the listener to fully ponder, understand, respond and then remember what is being said.
In a marriage, it is essential to have your head clear and take a stand for yourself. Marriage works on equality. Each partner should have an equal say in decision making. Assertive behavior requires the client to confidently put across his/her viewpoints.
The counselor basically provides you with a safe environment, where you can find an outlet to your feelings in a non-judgmental way. The presence of a counselor can surely make the process easy. One of the main aspects to be thought about while expressing your feelings is When, How, What and to Whom you have to share your thoughts
Many times the situation is very tough when you are not just going through marriage problems but the faith you have in yourself also depreciates. Thus, a marriage counselor not only focuses on the couple but also on the individual and how they come together as a couple. When you have low self-esteem and the emotions that you go through are negative, you won’t have faith on yourself and as a result, you are not motivated to give your 100% to your partner. You tend to see each and every problem from a very negative perspective.
No marriage is devoid of conflict but it is essential to see when it moves beyond a certain limit. Couples need to seek help from a marriage counselor to deal with their grievances. The task gets difficult when ego sets in between partners, thus a marriage counselor helps with ego resolution.
Be it infidelity, lies or broken promises, these are major problems that invade your marriage. The trust between a husband and wife is severely damaged. However this doesn’t mean that marriage isn’t workable. Trust is an intimate feeling where you feel safe with another person. It takes time and effort to re-establish the sense of safety you need for your marriage to strive. Marriage counseling helps rebuild trust between the couple.
Many times the problem creeps in due to lack of sexual intimacy. Sexual intimacy is essential in every marriage as it brings you closer; it provides a sense of connection. A marriage gets a little shaky when the couple has certain issues regarding their sexual intimacy, which can really improve by understanding what you expect from each other. Seeking assistance from a counselor can be beneficial. Various problems arise due lack of trust and compatibility, and confidence in oneself addressing those issues is the main factor.
In every marriage, we expect a lot of things from each other. Some of these expectations are not even communicated and we just expect the other person to know about them. Thus, this becomes the most important issue to address as it leads to a communication gap between the couple. Focus on the present scenario and try expecting realistic things from each other rather than desiring things that are hard to fulfill. A marriage counselor helps you find a way where you set goals which can be easily fulfilled by your partner.
People who seek counseling about their marriage problems are the ones who feel that there is still hope left and they will be able to find some solution. The most basic way to save your marriage from a disaster is to avoid sweeping issues under the carpet when they first arise, rather address them then and there only. Try and manage your negative emotions and communicate in a non-defensive manner. In marriage, you’ll find some problems which are fixable whereas others are not. Thus, finding a way to deal with both and focusing on balance between the two is essential. But the most essential component of saving a marriage is the zest between partners to work on themselves as well as together, and the energy to work through the situation and find a way to rebuild love and trust. The biggest factor clients need to understand is that they are responsible for their actions and it is their responsibility to keep their relationship alive. Just don’t focus on yourself. Instead bring your efforts together to focus on the relationship.
Put all your resources and efforts to save your marriage and let the counselor act as a mere facilitator who is there to guide your way through.
Susan presents the idea that if we nourish our relationships, we become a team and build the trust and goodwill that we’ll need to get us through the difficult times. She offers three tools that can help make relationships happier and lasting.