When you’re going through a difficult situation with your partner, you might start to think about breaking up. You’re feeling like your relationship isn’t as good as it used to be and you’re not sure if you should just end it.
While some couples therapists may tell you to break up, they don’t always do so outright.
1. Therapists are not going to break you up
Therapists are mental health professionals who help people overcome a wide range of issues. They can be licensed counselors, social workers, psychotherapists, psychologists or psychoanalysts. The qualifications of each type of therapist differ according to state law, but most have a master’s degree or doctorate in psychology or social work.
Although the way therapists practice their professions vary, they usually use a similar theoretical orientation to guide their work. They often use cognitive behavioral therapy and other methods, which involve identifying and replacing negative thoughts with positive ones.
In addition, they work with their patients to develop life goals that will support them in overcoming obstacles and creating healthy relationships. This can improve a person’s quality of life and prevent them from experiencing negative consequences. When drugs or alcohol are being abused, the therapist may recommend one or both members to go to a rehab or together that offers a rehab for couples.
They also often help clients overcome past trauma and other stressful events. This is especially helpful for those who are struggling with anxiety and other psychiatric symptoms.
During sessions, they might also give their patients non-directive advice about how to handle their problems. They may suggest changes in behavior, teach coping techniques and assist with stress management and medications.
Many therapists have their own practices, which allows them the flexibility to set their own schedules and choose how much time they spend working with each client. This can be especially beneficial for those who have families or other commitments outside of work.
It is also important for therapists to establish and stick with boundaries with their clients, which can help reduce the risk of developing an unhealthy relationship between the two. They should also avoid talking about their clients with other people in their lives.
One of the biggest challenges therapists face is managing their own mental health and emotional well-being. They often hear about traumatic experiences each day, as their clients talk about them, and they have to deal with the negative emotions that come from their job.
They sometimes find that the work they do with their patients bleeds over into their personal lives, making it difficult for them to maintain a healthy relationship with their friends and family.
2. Therapists are not arbitrators
There are many reasons that you might want to seek the help of a couples therapist. Perhaps your relationship isn’t working out or you feel like something is off and you’re not sure what to do about it. Maybe you’re unsure if your partner is being truthful or if they’re being honest about their feelings.
When you go to therapy, you and your therapist will work together to get to the root of your problems. Your therapist will guide you through the process and give you tools to help you manage your feelings, thoughts and behaviors so that you can have more healthy relationships in the future.
If you’re thinking about seeking help for yourself or someone else, be sure to find a therapist with experience and credentials in the area you need assistance with. You can ask your doctor for a referral or talk to friends or family who have had successful experiences with therapy.
Therapists are trained to listen and encourage you to express your feelings. They can help you pause instead of reacting to your upset feelings and they may teach you coping skills and how to address fears.
It’s important to make sure you find a therapist with a lot of experience and who is trained in couples therapy. They should be able to address the complexities of the relationship and not let you become thrown off course by verbal or emotional abuse.
Your therapist also needs to have a no secrets policy in place. This is especially important when one of you in the couple has an affair. If the therapist knows about it and you disclose this information to them, they will not be allowed to share it with your partner.
Confidentiality is a cornerstone of the therapist patient relationship. It has both mandatory and permissive exceptions which therapists must be equipped to navigate.
Some exceptions include the requirement that a therapist report child, elder or dependent adult abuse. These laws specify what must be reported, the timing and method of such reporting, the immunities that come with reporting and the penalties that can be imposed for failing to report. This is a mandatory exception to confidentiality, and therapists should be careful to follow the law when they are required to report.
3. Therapists are their to guide you
The good news is that therapists are trained in the field of mental health and have the expertise to help you overcome challenges and get to the root of your problems. They are also a great resource when you need extra support, advice and an outside perspective.
Often, the most important thing about talking to a therapist is that you feel safe and comfortable enough to open up to them about your struggles. This is crucial for your emotional well-being and may help you develop healthier communication skills, resolve issues, and prevent future problems.
However, there are times when therapists do not have the knowledge or expertise to help you. And in those instances, it’s up to you to decide whether or not you want to continue working with a therapist.
According to therapists, couples counseling can be effective in helping you overcome certain challenges or learn skills that you need to move forward with your life. For example, therapy is helpful for relationships when a couple feels stuck in a cycle of defensiveness or stonewalling, and it can help them learn how to better communicate their emotions.
But there are times when a therapist cannot work with a couple, and that is why you should always be clear about what your reasons are for wanting to end the relationship. This will make it easier for you to communicate with your therapist and to make an informed decision about the best way to go about ending the session.
The therapist’s job is to listen, validate and give voice to the perspectives of each partner so that they can both feel heard and understood. If a therapist is able to do this, it can be a great indicator that they have the skills and training to work with couples.
It is also important to remember that therapists are human beings with their own lives and challenges, so they can go through cycles of burnout or even experience mental health conditions themselves. This can have an impact on the way they treat their clients, and if you think your therapist is having a hard time dealing with their own problems or is taking sides, you may want to find a new therapist.
4. Therapists are not on your side
Couples therapy can be a difficult journey, but it’s important to find a therapist that you feel comfortable with. If you’re feeling uneasy or don’t agree with the way they approach the therapy, it’s okay to speak up. Often, therapists are receptive to feedback from their clients and will work with you to develop an approach that works best for your unique situation.
Sometimes, though, it is impossible to avoid conflict in a relationship. In this case, you might want to ask your therapist if they think it’s best to break up.
A good therapist isn’t going to tell you to break up unless it’s necessary for the health and safety of the relationship or you. This may not seem fair to you at first, but it is important to remember that the therapist has your best interest in mind and wants to help you.
If you’re concerned about what the therapist is telling you, it is okay to ask them for a referral. Ideally, they will be willing to give you referrals to a couple that they believe are a better fit for your needs.
During sessions, you might be asked to share personal details about yourself that you are uncomfortable with. This is an important part of the therapy process and can be very helpful to you.
However, you should only share information with your therapist when it will benefit you. If you’re sharing details to make your therapist laugh or get a reaction, it is not healthy for the relationship and shouldn’t be shared in therapy.
You should also not share things about your therapist that you would be ashamed of. This could be sexual thoughts or feelings, mental abuse, and more.
This might be a sign that you’re not comfortable with the therapist and need to seek help elsewhere. A therapist can’t make you change, but they can refer you to a counselor that is better equipped to handle your specific needs.
You can also ask your therapist to talk to your friends and family about the relationship. This will help you understand where the problems lie and give you a better idea of what needs to be changed. Hopefully, your therapist can help you resolve the issues that you have with your friends and family so that you are able to maintain the relationship in the future.