Marriage counseling can be an intimidating thing to start, especially if you haven’t had any experience with therapy in the past. But setting aside time to strengthen your bond and improve your relationship communication, among other issues, is a positive step to take that doesn’t have to be scary.
A good place to start is to look for a practice that specializes in relationships, marriage counseling, or couples therapy. Therapists with training and experience working with couples and families will be able to provide an empathetic, more effective path towards improving your relationship. At Well Marriage Center, all our counselors specialize in working with couples, so have extensive experience and use the latest training for the best results.
For many couples, working with a therapist who is physically close by is another important aspect, especially since many practices aren’t licensed across state lines. For example, if you live near Charlottesville, Virginia, searching for “marriage counseling near me” or “best therapists in Charlottesville, VA” is obviously a useful place to start.
What Is the Difference Between Couples Therapy and Marriage Counseling?
At Well Marriage Center, the terms “couples therapy” and “marriage counseling” are used interchangeably. Either term means that a couple is in a serious and committed relationship and they would like to strengthen their bond or work on resolving an issue.
No matter what you call it, therapy for couples in a relationship is a dedicated time for partners to:
- Improve communication, listening, and conflict management skills
- Invigorate their relationship, trust, & intimacy
- Interrupt unhealthy behavior patterns
- Overcome relationship challenges
- Heal past wounds
Some partners seek out counseling when issues arise in their relationship, like infidelity, an increase in disagreements, or a lack of connection. For others, therapy is a regular part of their relationship maintenance, and they use it as a time to deepen their connection and learn new ways of expressing themselves to each other. However you slice it, setting aside a specific time and energy to focus on one of your most important relationships will help you build a stronger connection to your partner, and therapy can be a useful tool in any relationship.
What Does Couples Counseling Do?
Every marriage counseling practice will do things a little differently, but there are two modern elements that Well Marriage thinks are most important: strengths-based and marriage-friendly counseling.
In a strengths-based approach, your therapist will begin by asking you and your partner about the positive elements of your relationship and the strengths of your partner. Doing this focuses on what brought you together as a couple in the first place: the good times you have shared, the things you like, and what you respect about each other now. Focusing on (and building upon) these strengths can be a much better start to counseling than jumping straight into the current issues you may be facing. Research shows this approach strengthens a couple’s ability to face challenges as a team.
A marriage-friendly therapist (or pro-relationship therapist) will come to each session with the underlying assumption that your relationship can be a happy and fulfilling one. As long as both people are willing to put in the work to create or reinvigorate their relationship, Well Marriage Center believes couples will be successful in their goals. Many other counselors start from a marriage-neutral point, where they do not form an opinion on whether or not a couple should stay together. To us, this makes it harder to truly support the relationship during the delicate moments that can arise during sessions. Knowing your counselor is on the side of your relationship and wants it to succeed can make the process easier for everyone.
When You Think “Couples Therapy Near Me,” Think Well Marriage Center
Well Marriage Center has helped well over 15,000 couples improve their relationships and rekindle their romance. We offer marriage counseling in Virginia, Maryland, Washington DC, North and South Carolina, Florida, and California. If you prefer virtual counseling, that is available for those living in any of these states as well.
In addition to marriage counseling and couples therapy, we also offer dating or premarital counseling in Charlottesville, VA and at all our other locations. Our other services include individual support for relationship issues and family therapy. When you’re ready, getting started with us is an easy process. We love empowering couples to cultivate the bond they deserve!