Couples and Marriage Counselling Ballarat
Help When You Need It
Couples Counselling Ballarat
Seeking professional help for your relationship can be a big step for many couples, but always a good step.
The stakes are high for couples, their families, as well as for each individual who is experiencing relationship difficulties.
“A relationship crisis causes us to do important inner business.”
When to get help…
A couple facing a relationship or marriage crisis can find themselves having a good hard and honest look at themselves and reflect on how they have been handling their difficulties and decide that they can no longer fix their issues on their own.
A relationship crisis can help a couple get out of their comfort zones and unhelpful habits, leading to asking themselves the big questions about what really matters in life, and what is worth fighting for (not against).
Couples counselling essentially helps each person to gain a better understanding of their issues, how to respectfully resolve conflict, and to gain new knowledge and skills on how to develop and sustain a loving and deeply connected life together.
Couples counselling is provided by registered ‘Family and Couples Counsellors’ who have formative training in mental health. These couple counsellors may be Psychologists, Social Workers, Occupational Therapists or Specialist Counsellors, all being registered members of a professional national association.
Couples counselling is often seen as a short term option of around 4 – 10 sessions, with occasional revisits to add to the couples skill and knowledge base.
When couples begin to encounter problems in their relationship that are beginning to cause damage between them, then it’s time to get some professional help.
Good reasons for couples counselling
When Communicating has become more negative than positive.
Once a couple start the negative communication spiral, it is a challenge to stop the spiral and return to a positive place.
Negative communication can include comments, words or behaviour that leaves the other partner feeling in a flat mood, disrespected, unloved, insecure, alone, or with a general feeling of being hurt.
Negative communication also includes ‘tone’ and how tone is used agains the other. The manner in how people say things is typically more important than what is actually said..
When Differences Are Now Causing Conflict
All too often the characteristics of the other person that initially drew you together are not leading to conflict as the differences are now becoming the source of discontent. .
Problems develop later in the marriage when the honeymoon period has passed and life has become routine. For example, an introverted person may become less willing to step out and participate in life’s opportunities.
Eventually, the extroverted person may begin asking themselves “What happened to the person I married?”, or “Are we just too different?”
When One Or both Partners Have Cheated
This issue is one of the more difficult ones for couples to recover from. It takes a lot of commitment and genuine hard work from both partners to rebuild the trust and security of their relationship.
In order for the marriage to move to the healing stage, there will be a need for the betrayed partner to find a sincere willingness to reach some level of acceptance and capacity to work on issues within their relationship.
The Couple’s Counsellor will skilfully guide the process whilst recognising that this is extremely difficult for the betrayed partner to achieve.
Chronic Conflict or Consistent Bickering
Conflict in marriage has multiple dimensions, ranging from avoiding any argument through to volatile hostility. All forms of conflict occurring over a long period of time will destroy a marriage as well as a family.
One of the stand-outs in couples who fight, is that paradoxically there is a lot of stability in conflict…. i.e. it becomes a pattern of behaviour.
This means that people do not change their ways easily on “how they do” conflict.
If you feel that the type, level and frequency of conflict is making you question your relationship, then it is time to seek professional couples counselling… soon.
When You Become ‘Just Best Friends’, ‘Co-Existing’, ‘co-parents’ or ‘like ‘siblings’
When couples become more like ‘best friends’ than partners in a marriage, it is a good indication that they need couples counselling… soon.
While couples are busing doing all the right things in life, they can unknowingly take their eye off the passion in their marriage.
After being together for a number of years, even without children. life together can become routine. Intimacy, passion, lust, sex and even everyday affection simply begin to slide away without either partner noticing.
That is, until one or both have realized what they have become.
We believe that being ‘best friends’ should be part of their relationship mix, but that is all. A life long passionate marriage requires just that, passion.
The good news is that many couples can rediscover and reclaim the passion that they once enjoyed with each other. By seeing a Couples Counsellor who can skilfully assist the couple to rediscover the zest that they once enjoyed between them.
Expressing More Negative Than Positive Thoughts and Feelings
What we feel on the inside, shows up on the outside.
To mask negative feelings, people will often adopt a range of behaviours in order to cope. Some of these masking behaviours include alcohol, drugs, becoming a workaholic, obsessions of various sorts, just to name a few.
All leading to stress and problems in the marriage.
Negative feelings begin to appear within the marriage in the form of resentment, hurt, sadness, disappointment or anger. If left untreated, it will lead to relationship breakdown.
Couples Counselling will help the couple to identify and understand the negative feelings and behaviours, and to find respectful and better ways to express these, eventually resulting in a stronger relationship.
When Separation Feels Like the only choice left
It’s difficult not to agree that a temporary ‘time out’ could be helpful for a couple that is locked in negative patterns that they can’t seem to shake themselves out of.
However, the risk is that when couples start having overnight stays away from their home, it may lead eventually to separation.
This is a strong signal that a couple needs to see a Couples Counsellor ASAP.
Spending time apart from each other does little to resolve the problems a couple is experiencing. It can, however, provide a little piece of room to breath, but when the partner returns, the problems are still there.
Staying Together for the sake of the children
Children are a great incentive for couples to get help to work on their marriage.
However, to simply remain together for the sake of the children without seeking professional help, may not ultimately prove the wisest decision a couple could make
The results of these decisions tend to show up much later in their child’s life. Children are highly tuned into the lives of their parents and are very intuitive to what’s going on.
You can’t face happiness for very long.
If you find yourself starting to feel or think like this, then it’s time to get some professional help, so that you both take a better course of action for in the family.