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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec. 9, 2010
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    Greensboro, NC
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    416

    Default Marriage Counseling

    So, who here has gone to "couples therapy" or counseling?

    I love my hubby, I really and truly do. But I don't feel like I'm nearly as happy as all of my friends that are married. Sometimes I tend to be more numb/angry then happy. Communication and quality time as a lot to do with this I'm sure. I suck at communicating...which kills the hubs. I'm hoping that going to a counselor will give me/us the tools to deal with each other

    Any one done it? And how on earth did you pick a counselor?

    Thanks!



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan. 3, 2003
    Location
    St. Louis, MO USA
    Posts
    953

    Default

    Yep. Twice. We last saw a counselor about 10 years ago, although I have gone on my own independently since that time. We had a lot of issues to work through. We used a recommendation from the priest who married us, and found both of our therapists that way.
    My new mantra - \"Life is too short not to eat ice cream.\"
    ReRiders Clique



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul. 5, 2007
    Location
    Beside Myself ~ Western NY
    Posts
    6,637

    Default

    Now and then. I finally found a therapist I really like a few years ago, and we've also done some couples sessions. I've brought my mother there too. He has taken his mother there. Heck, she probably has a huge file on our family, but it does make it easier to explain things. Always nice to have a mediator during the "he said, she said".

    We'll have a series of issues and one of will say "time to call Susan and get this sorted out." Two or three sessions, and we're on our way again.



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov. 27, 2004
    Location
    Netherlands
    Posts
    254

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by MtyMax View Post
    So, who here has gone to "couples therapy" or counseling?

    I love my hubby, I really and truly do. But I don't feel like I'm nearly as happy as all of my friends that are married. Sometimes I tend to be more numb/angry then happy. Communication and quality time as a lot to do with this I'm sure. I suck at communicating...which kills the hubs. I'm hoping that going to a counselor will give me/us the tools to deal with each other

    Any one done it? And how on earth did you pick a counselor?

    Thanks!
    Is part of my job, but live in the Netherlands (:

    You may send me a PM with more specific help you need and I can help you on distance.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct. 3, 2005
    Location
    Southwestern Virginia
    Posts
    719

    Default

    Been there but my marriage was very far gone by the time we decided to attend. Much happier divorced than I was married in that situation.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul. 5, 2008
    Location
    In the midst of cornfields
    Posts
    329

    Default

    Hubby and I went for about 14 months. Our visits were every 2-3 weeks. Our counselor specialized in working with couples. Only meaning he'd seen lots and lots of couples vs. someone who does more individual sessions.

    Even after 14 months, I can't say "WOW! Life is sooooooooooo much better." But it's been about 2 years and we haven't felt the need to go back yet. I imagine at some point we'll want a tune up.

    We did learn some better communication, but what frustrated me (still does) is that Hubby was much more communicative IN SESSION than he is at home. It's just how he is. We've definitely fallen back into some old patterns. But I do think I'm a bit more cognizant than I was before we went.

    Overall, I learned that if I want to be married to THIS man than I must accept X, Y, and Z about him. I'm a super social person and Hubby is not, almost anti-social. I learned that he'll never be my "girlfriend" and if I need that kind of support, I best look elsewhere (girlfriends) because he just doesn't understand and his brain can't function like that. I know women who say their DH is their everything and they can count him to be their girlfriend, best friend, etc. but mine isn't. It took a lot to accept that. I had to think long and hard about what I could live with and live without. I've had some SOs in the past who were more like and I craved it from him. But in the end, I accepted him for who he is...as he has accepted me for who I am.

    My issue for wanting to go to counseling was a disconnect. Hubby's idea of what he feels is connectedness is just being together (even if I'm on my computer and he's on his and we're not talking...that's still connected to him). What I feel is connectedness is talking (doesn't have to be about anything in particular, just having a conversation), actively partcipating in something together (meaning we're not our computers, we're doing something TOGETHER), physical touch (snuggling during a movie or what not), etc. So when I'm craving connectedness in the forms he doesn't give me very often (conversation, doing something outside the house, etc.) I call my best gal pal and we hang for awhile and I get my social fill up. I will say Hubby tries a lot harder, but I can't change who he inheritently is. So if I need more social interaction than he can give, I call a friend to talk to or hang out with. It's not that he won't listen, he's a great listener, but he's NOT a conversationalist and sometimes, I want more than someone who listens.

    I found our counselor by calling some providers through our insurance and found someone who specialized in coupes AND had evening hours! Woot!



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar. 23, 2005
    Location
    the evergreen state!
    Posts
    1,253

    Default

    Yep. 6 months after we got married, a ton of issues cropped up. Of all people, our handy-man/contractor neighbor (now hubby's good friend) who was working on our house mentioned a counselor he's worked with.

    She doesn't specialize in couples really, I believe her interests are more around crisis - eating disorders, rape victims, womens sexuality. She's also based out of a Christian medical group- and I was raised Catholic, my husband is Muslim. I say all this because you wouldn't think she'd be able to help us with our marriage, but she did. I think she is amazing at what she does and really helped get our marriage on the right course.

    We went weekly for 5 months straight, and wow a lot of stuff came up. The first couple sessions were individual, and then she brought us together.

    We sort of weaned off, able to do things on our own. I'll bet we'll go back in the future, at some point in time- she really was quite helpful.

    I say, definitely go. If anything, you will get something out of it yourself. I feel like I've matured a lot and have been able to deal with many situations, not even just in my marriage/family, with much greater maturity than I have in the past, which I credit to those sessions.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec. 9, 2010
    Location
    Greensboro, NC
    Posts
    416

    Default

    Our marriage is not in danger by any means...I just feel like I'm in a major slump and really unable to feel love. I'm hoping that couseling will help me work through my own individual issues (I have this sneaky suspicion that I have them), and help me be happier in marriage.

    "The Five Love Languages" anyone??

    The hubby feels love through words of affirmation. I believe I already mentioned that I suck at communicating!

    I feel love through quality time, occasionally acts of service, and occasionally via physical touch (but never sex, go figure!). Why can't I just pick one "love language" and stick with it?

    I have had several therapist recommendations from friends...I just need to get up the courage to make the call!



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar. 23, 2005
    Location
    the evergreen state!
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    1,253

    Default

    lol, she had us read that love language thing- it was just the start of the much longer conversation/discovery.

    i am like you - i kind of waffle with what is most important. and really, i feel boxed in. my husband, on the other hand was very cut and dry.

    I say do it. You will be happy you did!



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec. 21, 2005
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    1,142

    Default

    We used the Marriage Builders program and loved it.

    It brought my relationship and marriage from terrible to madly in love, head over heels - we both improved ourselves and I really do have a wonderful man who's incredible in many ways. He has a great woman who has her flaws, but we make an incredible team, couple, friends, and lovers.

    We tried other counseling without success, but Marriage Builders is incredible. Feel free to PM me if you want more specifics.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul. 31, 2008
    Posts
    1,808

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    My ex and I did go to counseling. After a lot of work, she helped us realize that we shouldn't be together lol. Not the hoped for result of course, but in the end, the correct one.



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan. 12, 2010
    Posts
    379

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by MtyMax View Post
    Our marriage is not in danger by any means...I just feel like I'm in a major slump and really unable to feel love. I'm hoping that couseling will help me work through my own individual issues (I have this sneaky suspicion that I have them), and help me be happier in marriage.

    "The Five Love Languages" anyone??

    The hubby feels love through words of affirmation. I believe I already mentioned that I suck at communicating!

    I feel love through quality time, occasionally acts of service, and occasionally via physical touch (but never sex, go figure!). Why can't I just pick one "love language" and stick with it?

    I have had several therapist recommendations from friends...I just need to get up the courage to make the call!
    Hmm, I was reading through the posts getting ready to recommend this book to you. If you've read the book, you know it is deciding if loving him and being willing to "learn a new language" is what you want.

    Even if you "suck at communicating", it is still something you may want to try to develop if you want him to be happier in the marriage. If you don't care if he feels unloved, or don't feel like doing the work, that is something you may need to consider as well. That last sentence is probably harsher sounding than intended, but I think you get my drift. If you buy an eventer, and then are mad because it won't do western pleasure... One or the other partner has to reach to come up with a mutually satisfying relationship. Perhaps you decide galloping is fun, and the horse realizes moseying on the trail has it's advantages, too...

    Yeah, I am totally not a marriage counselor...

    The book seems to show there is more than just knowing there are different ways people need to have love expressed to them. It helps you determine what your partner's needs are, so you know you are addressing them.

    ~says the girl without a partner
    I'm not really at the top of my game today. I'm not even exactly sure what game I'm supposed to be playing, in fact... or where it's being held...

    My horse's antics iamboyfriend.com



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Dec. 30, 2009
    Location
    The Great Plains of Canada
    Posts
    3,062

    Default not marriage, but couples therapy...

    Funny OP, I was about to recommend that book too! I'm bilingual - physical touch and quality time I'm trying to get the SO to read it... he'll get to it. Eventually The ex and I went to counseling after we broke up the first time. She recommended the book and also helped us with communication in general. Reading the book and learning to understand one another was a huge help - it really helped us to re-connect when our biggest issue at that time had been a sense of disconnect (well, on my part). We did break up in the end, but after a year and for different reasons. I grew and developed and realized I would be settling if I stayed with him, that there were a number of things about him that I could not accept. He also did not like the newly confident woman I had become I still refer to the book today; it helps you understand not only relationships with spouses but also with others (friends, parents, kids). You can only benefit from counseling - it just adds more tools to your toolbox. Tools you can choose to carry with you for life.

    As for how to find a counselor, can't help you there. The ex found ours through work or something. She was good though
    Last edited by naturalequus; Nov. 12, 2011 at 09:30 AM.
    ....horses should be trained in such a way that they not only love their riders, but look forward to the time they are with them.
    ~ Xenophon, 350 B.C.



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Aug. 2, 2004
    Location
    Whidbey Is, Wash.
    Posts
    9,694

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    I have my first appt on Monday, SO doesn't get back until mid-Dec. I had a major breakdown a few months (major for me) and told him that things needed to change and that we needed counseling because I was unhappy and he didn't understand WHY I was unhappy about some of the things I was unhappy about. If that makes sense. We are very happy together, but there are some things I want to nip in the bud, mainly that I will continue to work for the next 23 years and he retires in five years, and I will get some major resentment issues if I don't get help at home.

    I am going by myself at first because I DO have issues from the past that crop up. SO...not so much, NOTHING bothers him.

    ETA: We are using my department's chaplain, handily enough, who has years of experience in pre-marital counseling. He's a pastor and we are not religious, but he won't press that on us.
    Aisha, my heart from 03/06/1986 to 08/22/2008.

    COTH's official mini-donk enabler.
    Odie, aka the Evil Burrito, is on Facebook.



  15. #15

    Question

    I don't want to hijack the OPs thread but, has anyone done it outside of a marriage? Like just for a bf/gf relationship? We've been together for 3 years and never had any issues until recently. It's mostly just a lack of communication (communication is huge in a relationship to me, so I want to address it before it becomes a huge issue). I like to talk things out, maybe too much actually, and he doesn't. So basically, if something is bothering him, he waits until he can't stand it anymore and then blows up. I chalk it up to guys don't enjoy talking about their feelings, but I feel like it is starting to take a toll on the relationship. We both feel like it's too early to throw the whole thing away, especially since we have had a wonderful relationship the past few years, but just a tense 6 weeks. I mentioned going to talk to someone to get their perspective and he thought it might be a good idea. I said I would like to do it on my own as well, just to deal with some personal stress of mine (going back to school is driving me nuts). I told him it might not be a bad idea for him to see someone as well to work on some anger issues he has, but that didn't go over as well....

    So, what do you guys think? I'm not trying to change him, I love him just the way he is. Just want to open the door for better communication.



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jul. 31, 2008
    Posts
    1,808

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    I wasn't married to my ex. (long term SO.. 10 years). The counselor called it "couples therapy" not marriage counseling. I would actually recommend it to everyone before getting married. It's amazing the stuff that a 3rd party can make you think of.



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Aug. 2, 2004
    Location
    Whidbey Is, Wash.
    Posts
    9,694

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    Quote Originally Posted by alter1985 View Post

    So, what do you guys think? I'm not trying to change him, I love him just the way he is. Just want to open the door for better communication.
    Well, yeah, that's essentially couple's therapy right there. You don't WANT to give up, but something needs tweaking.

    I don't want my SO to change, I just want him to see how what he does affects me, so that sometimes he'll THINK first.
    Aisha, my heart from 03/06/1986 to 08/22/2008.

    COTH's official mini-donk enabler.
    Odie, aka the Evil Burrito, is on Facebook.



  18. #18

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by TheJenners View Post
    I don't want my SO to change, I just want him to see how what he does affects me, so that sometimes he'll THINK first.
    Do you think men some how communicate so they can all do this and drive us nuts??? The weird thing is, my bf is way more sensitive than me!! I've never met a guy so sensitive. It's kind of funny because he is 6'2, 220lbs, and super into weight lifting. He's a big dude. You wouldn't expect him to be such a baby about things! lol



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Apr. 9, 2004
    Posts
    216

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by MtyMax View Post

    But I don't feel like I'm nearly as happy as all of my friends that are married.
    I just wanted to comment on this particular sentence...I think you are doing yourself and your husband a disservice to compare yourselves to others and their maybe great/maybe not great marriages. You need to do what works for YOU, you need to determine if YOU are happy--that has nothing to do with how your friends may or may not be living.



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jul. 31, 2008
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    1,808

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    Quote Originally Posted by andreab View Post
    I just wanted to comment on this particular sentence...I think you are doing yourself and your husband a disservice to compare yourselves to others and their maybe great/maybe not great marriages. You need to do what works for YOU, you need to determine if YOU are happy--that has nothing to do with how your friends may or may not be living.

    And people generally seem a lot happier than they actually are. Unless they are making a bundle being on a reality tv show.
    "Sadly, some people's greatest skill, is being an idiot". (facebook profile pic I saw).



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