Couples Counseling Services: Know Your Options

by Brent Woods

When you find yourself at a point where your relationship needs help, you may wonder what you can do. After all, your attempts to resolve your relationship issues just between you and your significant other have been relatively unsuccessful, and you are looking for outside assistance. Luckily, there are several options available to you through couples counseling services. Couples counseling is not a on-size-fits-all type of treatment for couples. Instead, there are actually different styles of counseling to suit your needs. So, get to know your different couples counseling services options and choose the one that is right for you and your significant other. 

The Gottman Method

One of the most common types of couples therapy is the Gottman Method. This type of therapy focuses on building positive communication between individuals, and helping couples to focus on the positive rather than the negative in their relationship.

This is based on the theory that individuals often build up mental walls or blocks that prohibit effective, positive communications with partners. The Gottman Method helps to identify and get rid of those blocks through counseling and couple's exercises. 

Pastoral Couples Counseling

If you would feel more comfortable attending couples therapy with someone who knows you well, or who is involved in your religious life, pastoral couples counseling may be the best option for you. Pastoral couples counseling occurs with a member of the clergy of your chosen religion.

This type of therapy draws largely upon your religious faith and the teachings of your church to help you to get your relationship back on track. Some members of the clergy are trained therapists and some are not, so the degree of expertise that your chosen clergy member has in counseling may vary. However, if religion is a primary component in your life, pastoral couples counseling may be a good option for you. 

Imago Couples Counseling

Imago counseling takes a unique approach to couples counseling and focuses mainly on how childhood experiences may affect the image or feelings people have regarding their significant other. In other words, if you felt that you were harshly criticized throughout your childhood, you may reflect that image onto your partner later in life without even realizing it.

You may find yourself focused on your partner's criticism of your (whether real or imagined) and lose sight of all of the good in your relationship. Imago therapy can help you and your partner recognize the ways in which your past experiences may have undue influence on your present experiences and how to overcome those associations. 

As you can see, there are many options available to you to help with your relationship troubles. All you need to do is select the option that is best for you and your partner and get to the work of healing your relationship. 

For more information, contact Carol Vinson PhD or a similar professional.