Couples Therapy in Scranton, PA—Marriage Counseling
Your marriage is different than it was six months ago…or a year ago…or two years ago. Something changed. It was subtle and slow but very real. Conversations that were once easy and enjoyable became harder. Interactions that were once sweet and endearing are leaving you and your partner confused. Slowly, the relationship that once filled you with joy has turned into a relationship that you may or may not want to continue. You may be wondering what changed and when? It is hard to know, but the biggest question that is looming over the relationship is… what is next? Is this relationship worth saving? Can this marriage be restored?
Many first marriages end in divorce—as many as 40 percent, and the rates are even more staggering for second or third marriages. These statistics are overwhelming, but what statistics cannot measure is how many couples work through their problems and are able to reconcile or divorce amicably. There are many options available to couples who are struggling—options that bring healing and kindness and possibly a reconciled relationship. If you want more for your current marriage or long-term relationship but do not know what is next, consider working with a couples therapist. Marriage therapy can often help partners work through problems, establish a healthier dynamic, and decide what is next.
Thriveworks Scranton understands that all relationships have hard times, and all relationships need support. With a little help and guidance, many can rekindle the flame they once had.
Common Relationship Problems
Just as individuals will have easier and harder seasons of life, so do relationships. Couples often face ups and downs in their relationship. There are no perfect marriages. There are no perfect relationships. Common issues that can cause tension between partners include…
- Communication Difficulties – Empathy, listening, vulnerability, and sharing are the bedrocks of healthy communication. When these break down, communication breaks down, and relationships can break down.
- Distrust – When trust is broken, it can be prepared with intentional care, renewed effort, and time. The breach will not repair itself.
- Disagreements about Family – These are common hot topics within marriages and couples: in-laws, parenting, extended family, and housing. When couples are not in agreement about these, they often feel disconnected.
- Problems with Intimacy – Physical and emotional intimacy are important for couples to prioritize. When these are neglected, the relationship can suffer.
- Differing Goals – Couples often disagree about their priorities and where to give their attention. When partners are pulling toward different goals, they can trip each other up instead of working together.
If you and your partner are experiencing one or more of these, know that these challenges have very practical solutions. Problems are certainly not fun, but they are opportunities to grow and change. Many couples worry that if they acknowledge the problems in their relationship, that this acknowledgment will be a step toward divorce or separation. Quite the opposite can be true. Naming a problem can be the first step toward a healthier relationship. Unacknowledged problems often grow, but known difficulties can be addressed and resolved.
Relationships can be like puzzles. When both partners are committed to completing the puzzle and establishing a happy, fulfilling life together, they work together, ensuring each puzzle piece is present. Acknowledging that a piece is missing means that the couple can find it and put it in its proper place, forming a more beautiful picture.
Couples Counseling: Healthier Relationship Dynamics
Many of the common problems that marriages and couples face have very practical solutions, but what are they? A skilled marriage therapist may be able to help. Couples counseling is not a magic potion that automatically restores peace and love to relationships, but there are many ways it may help. Counseling may give couples…
- A more neutral atmosphere for discussion. Can you relate? What started as a calm discussion quickly escalates—named are called, motives questioned, and voices raised. It happens, but it is not healthy. Sometimes, couples need help keeping the discussion neutral so that the issues can be addressed. Therapists can often help.
- Realistic expectations for change. Change can take time. Is one partner skirting responsibility or simply experiencing growth pains? It can be difficult to tell, but an experienced couples counselor can often help set reasonable expectations for growth.
- Advocacy for each individual. Strong individuals come together to form a strong couple. Each individual has their own needs and desires and preferences, and at times, the individuals within the relationship need advocacy to strengthen their voice.
- Identification of toxic patterns. Stonewalling, defensiveness, criticism, and contempt are the four toxic relational dynamics that Dr. John Gottman famously used to predict divorce. However, when couples acknowledge these patterns, they can change. A marriage counselor can often help the couple see the pattern.
Couples and Marriage Counseling at Thriveworks Scranton, PA
If you are experiencing tension within your marriage or long-term relationship, consider reaching out for help. If you are ready to meet with a marriage therapist, consider working with Thriveworks Scranton. We may be able to help you and your partner decide what is next for your relationship. When you contact our office, you may have your first appointment within 24 hours. We offer evening and weekend sessions, but we do not keep a waitlist. Many forms of insurance are accepted. Our hope is that clients receive the help they need when they need it.
Let’s work together for healthier relationship dynamics. Contact Thriveworks Scranton today.