Couples come into therapy years too late – according to research. I often hear of couples going to therapy after they have done so much damage to their relationship that it is difficult to repair. When couples call me to make an appointment for therapy they often tell me about their sad story about the last 10 years of a loveless, passionate-less, disconnected relationship. They long to get back to what they had when they first met. But after years of learning unhealthy habits to deal with relationship stress, it is a very long and steep road back.
There are several signs that you and your partner might need counseling. I will offer a few here:
- You are fighting more than usual
- Your fights are not being resolved and are just ignored or purposefully set aside
- Arguments last longer than before
- Your sex life has become passionate-less
- You feel like you are living with a stranger
- There is a start to or increase in addictive behavior (i.e., pornography, substances, problematic eating)
- Depression or anxiety seem more present for you or for your spouse
- Your ability to perform daily tasks is weakening (as is your desire to do them)
Getting help from a professional, reading a book, talking with someone who has your best interest at heart can start you on the road back. Most couples, however, wait too long and do too much damage along the way. Start by reaching out to a professional or picking up a book such as Dr. John Gottman’s Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work.