How do you view and handle money? Is your tendency to spend or to splurge? Were your parents indulgent and bought you everything you asked for, or did they require you to save up for what you wanted? Were your parents constantly arguing about money? Our experiences, the way we were brought up and the values inculcated by family all contribute towards our “money personality”.

Money personalities may include one or the combination of the following:
– Spender. This is one who thinks that money is to be enjoyed and that things you buy can be used to enhance your life. Shopping is a thrill. The spender has no compunctions about swiping that credit card.
– Saver. This is one who feels the compulsion to cut corners to increase savings. The thrill is in getting a good deal. Thus you will find the saver armed with coupons and would be first in line during sales.
– The Play-It-Safer. Risk averse personalities would invest but choose something that has low rewards but low risk as well. They like seeing money grow slowly but surely.
– Budget-beaver. This is one who likes to ensure that everything is by the budget and expenses are well-planned.
– The Gambler. Gamblers are not scared with the toss of the dice – investments that have risks but yield high rewards.
– The Dreamer. This is someone who has certain goals and is willing to work and save towards these goals.

Marriage and our money personality

And we bring this money personality into our marriage. And often, this is what causes conflicts between couples. When two individuals with differing money personalities unite and decide to combine finances, you can expect conflicts to arise. A husband may raise his eyebrows at the credit card statement that shows a wife’s shopping spree. A wife may complain about the household expense account. A spouse may feel that the other partner has unrealistic expectations on savings. There may be disagreements about how much to spend, whether to have separate or joint accounts and so on. A couple may need time to adjust to each other’s money personalities.

So how do you deal with the differences in money personality? Here are some tips:
– Recognize that there will be differences.  You can’t expect you and your spouse to have the same money personality. What is key is for you to understand you and your spouse’s money personality and that each personality has its own advantages and disadvantages. This is your starting point as you and your spouse discuss how you can deal with your differing personalities. It is also important to recognize that money personality differences can be helpful if you are able to communicate and deal with your differences effectively.
– Discuss money personalities prior to marriage. Ideally, money personalities prior to marriage. This is where pre-marital counseling can help.
– Give your spouse the benefit of the doubt. Your spouse is not there to make things difficult for you. His or her financial decisions are driven by his or her money personality. Recognizing this will help you communicate better and avoid accusing.
– Talk about money while there is no conflict. Schedule times when you can both sit down and discuss your budget, investments and bills. It is best to have these discussions while emotions (and tempers) are not running hot. It will also be helpful for you to set guidelines on how you will handle your money.
– Understand your spouse’s needs and expressions of love. Your money personality will also point towards how you perceive love. For instance, a spender will take delight in showering his spouse with gifts. However, if his spouse is a saver, it will only annoy the spouse to see that her spouse is spending money on “unnecessaries”.
– Get counseling. Oftentimes, it is helpful to go for couples counseling in Provo when the conflict becomes too complicated for you to handle. Therapy can help you gain deeper insights on your and your spouse’s money personality.

Marriage therapy in Provo, Utah

For Provo, Utah marriage therapy in Provo, Utah, you can visit Dr. Triston Morgan. Dr. Morgan has years of experience in helping build relationships and providing couples counseling. He is a marriage and family therapist licensed to practice in the state of Utah.

They say that if there is no conflict whatsoever in a marriage, one of the partners isn’t thinking.

Marriage is about the union of two individuals. You can’t expect two people to be in harmony and agreement about everything every time. What you can expect is that two people can disagree and have clashes, even if they are crazy about each other.

Conflict is, in fact, healthy. It shows that the marriage is still a partner of two individuals. When handled right, they can be opportunities for the marriage to grow stronger and deeper. Thus, instead of trying to sweep conflict under the rug, it is healthier to build skills that will help you and your spouse resolve any conflict you will be facing.

There are some negative ways in which to resolve conflicts. These can include:

–          Concession. Giving in to the other person just to get the conflict over with. When one sees conceding as a victory for the other spouse, there will be feelings of resentment and the situation is not really resolved.

–          Denying the conflict. Sweeping the conflict under the rug and pretending it never happened may solve the situation temporarily. But the conflicts will pile up until someone blows up.

–          Withdrawing from the conflict. Responding to the conflict by withdrawing will not solve anything. Withholding your company and your love to your spouse will just deepen the rift, rather than strengthen your bond.

Here are some tips that may help resolve conflicts positively:

–          Think win-win. Marriage is a partnership. It is not a battleground where each one is collecting victories. Your spouse is not the enemy. Go for a solution where both of you can win. Winning the argument may feel good but you will be at the losing end when it comes to your relationship. Aim towards resolving conflict in a way that will strengthen the relationship and build trust and respect. If win-win is not possible, the two of you must be willing to meet halfway or compromise.

–          Ask, don’t make assumptions. Some conflicts are caused by what you believe your spouse has done or because of assumptions regarding the motives. Rather than running a hundred theories in your head about what your spouse did or why he or she did it, it’s best to ask outright. Get some clarification – seek to understand.

–          Listen, not just to words, but to what your partner is feeling. This will help you get insights on the other person’s side. Recognize that when a person is upset, he or she may not be able to effectively convey the issues. Be on the lookout for nonverbal communication such as gestures, tone of voice, facial expression and intensity of your voice.

–          Don’t be historical. Focus on the conflict currently at the table. Avoid the temptation of dredging up past failures or resentments. The path towards conflict resolution does not lie in assigning blame; rather it is in coming up with a solution that works for both of you.

–          Don’t be hysterical. Keep yourself calm so as to keep the ability to express yourself to your spouse effectively. Getting into a shouting match will not resolve any conflict. Do not be aggressive or defensive. Rather, both of you should work to maintain respect for each other, even in the midst of the conflict. When emotions flare up, you may be tempted to hit below the belt and do more damage instead of good while trying to resolve the conflict.

–          Keep your sense of humor. Sometimes, seeing the humor or irony in things can decrease the tension and set the mood for a more constructive dialogue. Be sure to laugh with your spouse, not at your spouse. Sarcasm is also not an effective form of humor.

–          Be ready to forgive. Sometimes, resolving conflict may need letting go of the hurt and anger generated by the conflict. This also involves letting go of the need to punish the partner – this will only add to the problem and may deepen the conflict.

–          Be ready to agree to disagree. There are issues where you two will still have different stands. If both cannot agree on a certain issue, you can agree to disagree about that matter, where both of you can move on.

Sometimes, effectively resolving conflict may need an outside party, like a marriage counselor. This objective third party can help pick out solutions that you and your spouse may not see because you are too close to the situation.

Also, marriage therapy can be a great avenue for you and your spouse to discuss the conflict and resolve it with less drama. The therapist can act as a facilitator and referee. An experienced marriage therapist will also be able to provide you with great conflict-resolution tools.

If you and your spouse are in need of conflict resolution therapy and you are residing in Provo,

Utah, you can look to Dr. Triston Morgan for help. Dr. Triston Morgan holds a Ph.D. in marriage and family therapy and holds years of experience in helping couples resolve their conflicts positively and constructively.

In the road towards resolving conflict, we can be reminded of these words from Phyllis McGinley: “In a successful marriage, there is no such thing as one’s way. There is only the way of both, only the bumpy, dusty, difficult, but always mutual path.”


Fight club! Does your family feel like a warzone? Do you feel that your family is into an argument or a fight half the time? Don’t be surprised. Conflict is part and parcel of being a family. Remember, a family is made up of different people. Yes, they are related by blood (and love), but sometimes they come with different personalities, beliefs and opinions. And these differences may sometimes chafe another member of the family.

Conflicts within the family are normal, even healthy, up to a certain point. However, conflicts may escalate to the point where other family members are affected. The conflicts have a negative impact not just on the relationship but on the family’s wellbeing, happiness, and day to day functioning. There may be a need for family members to go into Utah family therapy in order for each member to know how to communicate and resolve conflicts in an effective and healthy manner.

Different kinds of conflict

There are different kinds of conflict – conflict between the husband and wife, between a parent and a child and between siblings. Spouses may have conflict due to money matters, how the kids are to be disciplined, how to deal with in laws and so on. Parents may have conflict with a child as the child tries to test limits and assert a certain level of independence. Siblings may fight due to conflicts about personal space and respect for one’s property and privacy.

Other sources of family conflicts include substance abuse, a child playing the truant at school or a child’s rebellious behavior. Or, the family may be undergoing some stress or grief caused by transferring from one place to another, a breadwinner losing his or her job or the death of a loved one.

These conflicts and issues may affect one or more family members – resulting in higher levels of stress that in turn result in changes in sleeping patterns and eating habits. It may even produce physical symptoms such as stomachaches or headaches.

In an effort to ensure that a family stays strong in the midst of conflict, the family can create guidelines on how they will deal with conflict. It is important to encourage open communications but this should be balanced with mutual respect. Here are some guidelines that can provide helpful:

  • Have regular family meetings. Provide a venue where family members can openly communicate. This will actually prevent plenty of conflicts in that potential arguments are headed off and resolved before they become a full blown conflict. Communicating also creates a deeper understanding for other family members, their feelings and reasoning and how these affect their actions.
  • Calm down. A blow-up from one family member may negatively affect the rest of the family. When you feel yourself getting emotionally worked up, take a moment to calm yourself down. You may have to leave the room or take a short breather. This will help put you in the proper frame of mind. When one is emotionally charged, it can hamper the way you can objectively look at things with the view of resolving them.
  • Focus on the issue at hand. Discuss the issue that caused the conflict. However, avoid the temptation of making “you” statements (i.e. You never listen to me. You are doing this just to irritate me.) Instead, go and identify the core problem so that you can start discussing ways on how to deal with it.
  • Choose which battles to fight. Family situations are often complex. There will be trivial issues and large ones that can be potential sources of conflict. Choose which battle to fight. Sometimes, when you solve the bigger issue, it will trickle down to solving other smaller issues. Relationships are about give and take as well. Don’t expect other members of the family to agree with each other on all issues – agree to disagree and respect each other’s opinions. Learn to meet halfway.
  • Come up with and discuss solutions. Going into family counseling may help you be better at exploring solutions for a problem. Discuss these solutions with the family so that they can evaluate and help with making the final decision. Some solutions may require changes – evaluate a chosen solution over a period of time to see if it is the right solution for the issue at hand.

Getting Help

Going for family counseling will help in resolving family conflict. An experienced and well-trained family therapist can help the family recognize how each one communicates, how to understand a situation and deal with the problem in the most effective way. With the help of a well-trained and experienced family therapist in Utah, families can learn to find their way out of conflict and build a stronger bond with each other.

When you are in the Provo, Utah area, feel free to drop by Dr. Triston Morgan’s family and Provo marriage therapy practice.  Dr. Morgan holds a Ph. D in marriage and family therapy. Ever since he started his practice in Utah, he has helped a considerable number of couples and families deal with conflict in a positive and non-confrontational way.

Couples undergo rough patches time and time again. And sometimes, it would be helpful for couples to go into Utah marriage therapy. It doesn’t hurt to ask for a bit of outside help to keep the marriage and the family in one piece and even stronger throughout the years.

This is not to say that going into couples counseling is a foolproof solution that will ensure that you keep the marriage intact. There are times when the damage may be too much for counseling to help salvage the marriage. One or both spouses may have gone “over the edge” and have already emotionally given up on the relationship. Sometimes the attitudes brought into the counseling room prevent the couple from getting the most out of the sessions.

If you are thinking of getting into marriage counseling in Utah, come prepared to get the most out of your therapy time, not just to get your money’s worth but to ensure that you and your spouse enjoy the full benefits of the counseling. It can be quite a challenge and you will have to be ready to work at the therapy sessions. Here are some of the things that can help you take the most advantage out of marriage counseling:

  1. Accept that there is a problem that needs to be resolved. There is the temptation to go into denial. It is easier to ignore a problem and not act on it. In a marriage, sometimes only one partner thinks that there is a problem while the other is contented with the status quo. It takes work but if one partner thinks there is a problem, chances are, there is a problem. Getting into couples therapy with the realization that you are there because a problem needs to be solved will actually speed things up since you can go straight into identifying the problem and discussing solutions and tools you can use to deal with it.
  2. Come prepared. Before the sessions, it would be best if you and your spouse discuss the problem areas you want to focus on. Identify your objectives and make a list of possible questions and thoughts you can discuss during the session.  Some areas to discuss include: what you expect to get out of the sessions, what kind of marriage you want to have, what are your expectations of your partner and yourself, what are the things that bother you about the relationship. Be ready to ask (and be asked) tough questions as you try to discover the root causes of the problems you and your spouse face.
  3. Be honest. Therapy is not about “putting your best face forward”. It is about being candid about your feelings, your behaviors and your opinions. Your therapist (no matter how good he or she is) cannot help you when you are not fully honest. Of course, it can be difficult to talk plainly about something that may be hurtful or embarrassing to you, but remember, your therapist is bound by rules of confidentiality and cannot repeat whatever is discussed in the sessions.
  4. Be fully engaged. You are there to listen and talk. Be involved in the sessions and don’t allow your mind to wander off. Share your thoughts and ask your questions.
  5. Don’t make it about the here and now. You may be inclined to talk about your fight the morning of the therapy session or to what’s on your mind just now. Focus on the root causes of the problem, on the context of what causes these fights and arguments.
  6. Think win-win. Therapy is not about pointing out that the other party is wrong. It is about working together to strengthen your relationship as a couple. There will even be a time when you have to admit that you are part of the problem and be ready to change. As you and your partner figure out ways for you to both “win” by having a stronger relationship, you are able to resolve issues faster and easier.
  7. Be ready to change yourself. Remember, marriage is a partnership – what you do and are will have an impact on your spouse and vice versa. This means that the cracks in your union are not just the fault of the other partner. Be ready to make changes in yourself, rather than expect your partner to do the changing. You may need to change how you respond to the issue and how you relate to your spouse. Be ready to become a better partner for your spouse; in such a way, you can have a positive (and greater) impact on your relationship. This is saying to your partner that the marriage is worth making adjustments for.
  8. Follow it up. Sometimes the Provo marriage counselor will give you “assignments” or suggest action points you can try. This may have to do with your behavior, with your lifestyle and who you want to be. To do this more effectively, you should pay attention to what is said in the sessions and reflect on these in between sessions. Try out the new ideas being discussed during the sessions and see how well they apply to your situation and be ready to discuss the results in the next session.
  9. Be regular. For couples counseling to be effective, you need to work at it over a consistent period of time. It’s not an on again, off again affair. Regular sessions will help you and your spouse track progress and identify how certain changes in your behavior have affected the relationship.
  10. Be patient. Therapy is not some magic wand you wave over your marriage and think that it will be okay. As you are on a journey towards discovering yourself and your partner and towards learning new behaviors and mindsets, you and your spouse may make mistakes. You may also need time to adjust. Be patient with yourself and your spouse.

Marriage therapy is very helpful in resolving conflicts in a marriage. But it also needs a lot of work from your end. The marriage therapist is there to guide you through the road towards a healthy relationship, but you and your spouse will be the ones doing the discovering (and the changing).

If you are in the Provo, Utah area, you can consider getting help from Dr. Triston Morgan. Dr. Morgan has had extensive experience in helping couples. He holds a Ph.D and a license to practice marriage and family therapy in Utah. He is committed to helping couples work their way through the muddle of conflicts and into a stronger and more fulfilling relationships.


No marriage is storm-proof. Even with the best of unions, there are storms that a couple has to face. Perhaps because of changes they experience personally – with their feelings about each other, their going through different phases in their lives or facing addictions, their having substance abuse problems. The storms may also be due to other factors – money problems, issues with in-laws and children, the stress brought about by work…and the list goes on.

Yes, you can expect stormy patches in a marriage – they will happen. Perhaps these stormy patches have you and your spouse tipping precariously close to divorce. The question is, how will you weather these storms and keep your marriage intact, even stronger for what you have both gone through. The good thing about weathering the storm together is that you emerge with more closeness and more trust in your partner as you get to know him or her better.

Here are a few simple reminders to help you as you face the storms in life:

–          Talk. Rather than sulk, talk it out. The damage that results are caused by miscommunication and by not understanding what the other spouse expects or wants. Don’t think that your spouse is a mind reader – he or she is not! Although there are times when no words are necessary, there will be more times when you will have to express how you feel and what you think about the problem you are currently facing.

–          Have realistic expectations of each other.  Before the storm even comes, it will be helpful to know what you expect from each other. Sometimes, we enter into a union without coming into a true understanding of our expectations from our partners and vice versa. Some crucial questions should be discussed that cover important topics like: rules about “fighting fairly” and resolving arguments, decision making, handling money, raising and disciplining children and spending time with each other. You should know beforehand what it is your partner needs from you in terms of showing affection and making him or her feel loved.

Handle arguments constructively. If you must fight, you must agree beforehand that you will fight fairly. Sometimes, there is a temptation to be “historical”, rather than hysterical. Historical, in the sense that one tends to dredge up the other’s past sins for ammunition. When arguing, deal only with the issue at hand. Avoid the blame game and keep “you” statements away from the conversations. You statements such as “You never show me respect.” “You always do that.” put the focus on the person rather than the problem.

Laugh together. A good sense of humor can do a lot to ease any tension and pressures resulting from what you are facing as a couple. Laugh together and you will find yourselves better (and more resilient) for it. As a couple, you can choose to face life’s trials with a joyful attitude or with a pessimistic and negative disposition.

Reminisce about the happy times. Take time to go down memory lane – this will help give you more and more reasons why you stay together. Memories of better times will also give you the strength and fortitude to face the rough times ahead.

Go get help. Sometimes the issues are too complicated or the wounds too deep for just the two of you to solve. Overcoming the storms may take outside help – don’t be afraid to go and seek the services of a trained professional who provides marriage counseling. A good marriage therapist will be able to effectively guide you and provide you with tools to help you build a stronger bond with your spouse and thus enable you to face the storms of life with a united front.

While Utah marriage therapy will not provide all the answers, it may provide you with a different perspective of the problem.

Exercise patience. The storms usually do not go away after a day. Some storms in a marriage will need patience, commitment and gentleness. If you have been going for couples’ counseling, don’t expect results overnight. The damage that results from these storms may also take some time to fix and heal. Also, remember that you both can’t be perfect – you are bound to make mistakes. There may be times when you may need to have the spirit of forgiveness or to ask for forgiveness for both of you to recover.

Take time for “we” and “me” time. Sometimes, you need to get out just to be able to see things from a different perspective. Go on a vacation together and come back rested and refreshed. However, there are also times when you need to have some space in your relationship – for you to go out with friends or to talk to someone you trust that can help give advice about your relationship.

Communication is key

For you and your spouse to emerge from a storm with your union intact and stronger, you need to root your relationship in communication. Getting a deeper understanding of each other will help you weather the storms. This is where a marriage therapist in Provo can help. He can provide you with a non-confrontational environment where you can discuss issues and where each partner can feel that he or she is truly heard.

If you are in the Provo, Utah area and are thinking of getting marriage or Utah family therapy, be sure to look for Dr. Triston Morgan. Dr. Morgan holds Ph. D in marriage and family therapy and is firmly committed to providing therapy services to build stronger marriages and families.



Has the sizzle in the bedroom started to fizzle out of your marriage? When you and your spouse began your relationship and all was new and exciting, you felt like you would never get tired of spending time together, both in and out of the bedroom.

Inevitably, after a few years of marriage, both of you become caught up with the everyday activities, raising children and balancing family and career. You are hard at work and at times, you just can’t find the energy to spend intimate times together as you should.

Keep the Fire Going

Passion in a relationship is like a fire – it has to be kept going. Otherwise, it will dwindle. What makes it complicated is that males and females have different sexual needs and also view sex differently. A happy married life needs a strong sex life in order to survive.

It is important to recognize at the onset that a couple’s sexual life will have some ups and downs. There are many factors that can affect the atmosphere in the bedroom. One spouse may be too fatigued or overstressed to be in the mood. Yet another spouse may be suffering from a physical or mental ailment that results in lowered sexual libido.  Recovering from an illness may also lower sexual drive. The ups and downs in a couple’s sex life are just normal.

It is important to face sexual issues and try to arrive at an agreeable solution. Sex, after all, is an intrinsic part of marriage. Sexual problems will also affect other aspects of the relationship. On the flipside, if there is something wrong with the relationship, it can also spill over to a couple’s sexual life. Hurt feelings, a lack of communication, and the knowledge that a partner has strayed can affect how partners do in bed. You may have to seek marriage counseling to bring out the root causes of your bedroom blues.

What is important is that you can do some things to stoke the fires of passion and keep it burning bright. Here are some of the ways to put the sizzle back in your sexual life:

Set the stage. Here’s an interesting fact: foreplay does not just happen in the bedroom. Wives especially don’t appreciate a hand in the dark after a day’s weary routine, especially if  neither of you spoke or made any real connection during the day. Creating a spark can be as simple as a wink across the room, a romantic text message or arranging a fun night out. You can also place a sexy note in your partner’s shoe or on the bedroom mirror. You can write about a sexual fantasy you would like to share with your partner.

Study your spouse. What part of sex feels good for your partner? Take time to caress your partner’s body to discover which parts he or she likes you to touch the most. You may also need to discuss sexual viewpoints, fears and negative feelings. As you get to know about your spouse, you deepen your level of intimacy and this will also affect how you make love to each other.

Be spontaneous and creative. Avoid the mistake of monotony. Remember that the bedroom is not the only place for you to make love. Vary your sexual routine, experiment on different sexual positions, wear sexy lingerie. If your partner is willing, you can indulge in role playing games.

Make time for making love. Even though you need a little spontaneity in your sex life, you may also need to make time for sex in the midst of your busy schedule. It can give you and your partner something to look forward to.

Sex and Couples Counseling

Some couples find it helpful to attend couples counseling to try and resolve sexual problems in the marriage. If you and your spouse have tried and failed to spice things up, it may be time to seek help. It is a mistake to hope that the issue will resolve itself or go away over time.

Marriage counselors have the training, experience and insights that provide couples with the tools they need for better communication and deeper understanding of their partner’s sexual needs.

Through couples’ marriage therapy, spouses can outline a plan and a road map towards an improved sexual life. With counseling, couples can discover negative attitudes, fears and bad experiences from the past that might be adding to the problem. The couple can then address these issues effectively and positively. Your marriage counselor will suggest activities and exercises to help resolve all problems and get back to a satisfying sex life for both parties.

An experienced marriage therapist can also identify physiological factors that may cause the sexual problem and refer the couple to a doctor for proper diagnosis.

If you are thinking about couples counseling, consider Triston Morgan in Provo, Utah. With years of experience counseling individuals and couples, Triston has helped relationships become stronger. He is a licensed marriage and family therapist whose practice is located in Utah. He is also certified to give PREPARE/ENRICH courses for engaged couples.



As Raymund Hall puts it, “All marriages are happy.  It’s the living together afterward that causes all the trouble.”

Indeed, marriage is not just about being in love – it’s about commitment and the willingness to work to stay in love by building a strong bond between husband and wife. However, marriage is also about two people who have different backgrounds and personalities. You throw in children, the stresses of one or two careers, day-to-day living and a whole array of other issues and situations, and you realize that marriage is a fascinating yet complicated dance where the dance partners miss a few (or more than a few) steps.

Indeed, there are many issues and conflicts that can blow a marriage apart. Often the problems are too complicated and emotions are too involved that the two spouses will need the help of another party in picking apart the issues and trying to solve them. This is where an experienced and licensed marriage therapist can help – to see the couple learn “the dance” and get into a deeper and more meaningful phase in their relationship.

What does a marriage counselor do?

A good marriage counselor guides a married couple as they work through the conflicts and problems they have in the marriage. With the help of regular sessions, the marriage counselor helps the couple identify and solve problems that may be hounding their mariage.

The counselor also provides the husband and wife with a positive outside influence, as well as with all the effective tools for them to build the marriage, particularly communications tools that can help each understand the other and help resolve any conflicts in a productive manner.

Marriage counselors can help you through the many landmines in a relationship – financial disagreements, sexual incompatibility, personality conflicts, disgreements with major issues (such as how to raise children or deal with in-laws). Commonly, marriage counselors have special training to help couples through these sensitive issues.

How to Find a Marriage Counselor

Now, the next question is, how do you find a marriage counselor? It is important that you (the couple) and your marriage counselor are compatible. This will be crucial to the success of the therapy/counseling sessions. Remember, you are entusting your marriage (and some very personal details!) to the counselor so you will do well to choose carefully and wisely. It is also important that both you and your spouse agree on the final choice.

Here are a few simple tips to help you find a marriage counselor:

Identify your needs. Define the issues that you are facing and needing a marriage counselor for. You need to find out whether the counselor has had extensive experience and success dealing with these issues. For example, if the main issue you as a couple are facing is about sex, alcoholism or abuse, it is best to go with a counselor who specializes in counseling about these particular issues.

Define your budget. How much your budget is will also come into play in your choice of a marriage counselor. You should also check whether your health insurance coverage will pay for the sessions. If your budget is a major issue, then you should start looking into a student program (where student counselors, supervised by professionals, can provide you with counseling sessions). There are also churches that offer marriage counseling sessions.

Identify the kind of marriage counselor you want. Male or female? Single, married or divorced?  What are his/her qualifications? These may be the kind of questions that could help you filter through a list.

Get referrals. Ask around. Your family, friends and colleagues may also be undergoing or has undergone marriage counseling. You can also ask your pastor, priest or minister about referrals. Try to talk to couples who have undergone counseling with a particular referral.

Making the call

Most marriage counselors will provide propspective clients with a short phone or face to face consultation to help you determine the proper fit. This is where you can ask questions about him and his style of marriage counseling. The first interview is important since

Here are some questions you can ask:

– What are your views of marriage? (Does the counselor see marriage from the same viewpoint as yours?)

– What do you hope the marriage counseling will bring about?

– How many years have you been a counselor?

– How long do you think the counseling will last? What times are you available?

– Will your counseling fees be covered by insurance?

The first session will be key to help you determine whether the counselor is the right fit. You need to feel comfortable and confident enough to disclose details in your marriage that are often painful and very personal.

After the first interview, you can now be in a better position to commit to going into therapy and counseling with the said marriage counselor.

Getting a Marriage Counselor in Provo, Utah

For those who are looking for marriage counseling in Utah, you can look into getting the services of Triston Morgan. Morgan is a Marriage and Family therapist licensed to practice in the state of Utah. He has a master’s degree in marriage and family counseling from Loma Linda University and a Ph.D. from Brigham Young University. He has extensive experience with key issues faced by couples and families, particularly in the area of substance abuse and issues with teens. He is certified to provide PREPARE/ENRICH courses and is an upstanding member of the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists.


Myths are false notions that simply aren’t true. However, these myths sometimes affect how we look at things and how we react to issues and situations. Sometimes we carry some myths as we get into married life. We marry with stars in our eyes (and rightly so). But if we make the decision to marry based on some marriage myth, we may be in for a rude awakening when the truth finally sinks in. “I didn’t expect marriage to be this way!” “I thought love was all that mattered and we will live happily every after!” “I thought it would work out just like it does in the movies.”

Well, let’s try to debunk some of the more popular marriage myths, shall we?

Myth: A good marriage means being able to find Mr. or Ms. Right

H.L. Mencken so wisely puts it, “Strike an average between what a woman thinks of her husband a month before she marries him and what she thinks of him a year afterward, and you will have the truth about him.”

We may think that we went into marriage with Mr. or Ms. Perfect, conveniently forgetting the truth that “nobody is perfect”. The ideal about the perfect partner is often based on unrealistic expectations we have about our spouse, expectations that are nearly impossible to meet all the time. You are putting your spouse in a very high pedestal – eventually he or she will fall off.  It is important to realize that each of us has our own flaws. The secret is to love our spouse in spite of the shortcomings and flaws and to work into a suitable compromise.

Myth: Marriage is about changing the other.

They say that a woman marries a man with the hope that he will change, while a man marries a woman with the hope that she will not. Marriage is not about manipulating the other into becoming the image we have of him or her. Again, it is coming to a compromise. There might be habits or attitudes that annoys the other partner and you can talk and work on this together.

Myth: Arguments are a mark of a bad marriage.

Remember that you are never going to agree on everything. Arguments, or discussions, can actually help resolve conflict. Getting into marriage thinking that arguments are to be avoided at all costs can actually be harmful. What happens is that an issue goes on unresolved and when one has had more than enough, he or she will suddenly blow up. Mature discussions may actually work to let the couple sort of the conflict and come into a compromise, at beast.

Myth: Closeness comes automatically to married people.

Intimacy is like a plant – it requires daily watering and care. Miss a few days of taking care of it and you will see that the plant will start to wilt. If you want to develop intimacy with your spouse, you need to constantly and consistently nurture your relationship. Intimacy does not grow overnight or automatically. This involves spending time knowing (and studying) your spouse, what makes him tick, what he likes and doesn’t like and so on. This also involves listening to your spouse and also communicating how you feel.

Myth: To grow closer, partners must be together and do everything together all the time.

Remember, you are both individuals, with different needs and wants. Getting married does not mean that you are getting tied in the hip. Give each other space to pursue his or her individual hobbies and pursuits. It may sometimes be enough to let the other spouse know that you are supporting him or her. Pockets of separateness where you “do your own thing” (a hobby, a vocation) may very well strengthen the times you are together. So it’s okay for the wife to allow the husband to have a night out with the boys while she goes to the salon. You don’t have to be at every fishing trip or shopping trip either.

Myth: A good marriage means that both partners get what they want.

On the contrary! Marriage is about meeting halfway. The myth is that if your spouse truly loved you, he or she will give you what you want. This is setting a high level of expectations for the relationship.

Myth: If my spouse loved me, he or she will know exactly how I feel.

Just a reminder, your spouse is not a mind reader. He or she would not know what you are feeling or thinking unless you speak about it. Over the years, your spouse will get to know you such that one look will tell him or her what you’re thinking. But again, this does not make your spouse a mind reader. Communication is important. Sharing thoughts and feelings about issues and expectations will help establish a stronger relationship.

Myth: Getting into marriage counseling is a no-no.

There is a stigma with going for marriage counseling. Some people feel that this is just one step before both parties eventually give up. In reality, marriage therapy or counseling can help smoothe out the rough spots of the marriage and even give both partners the tools in which to strengthen the marriage.

Myth: Marriage has rules and guidelines.

There are rules about arguing, raising up the children, dealing with in-laws and handling money. Generally, what these rules are depends on both of you and what you agree upon. Setting guidelines early on in the marriage will help establish the framework by which your marriage will be set up on.

Myth: Everything will be happily ever after.

After the dream wedding, you set yourself up to ride off into the wind happily together. End of story. But in real life, that does not happen. A spouse gets sick, gets laid from work, a child rebels and the list goes on. Life will throw you a curveball from time to time. This is why a common marriage vow reminds us to love our spouse, “for better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, in sickness or in health.” If youa re able to weather the ups and downs of life together, this can actually make your marriage stronger.

Sometimes these misconceptions are so ingrained that it seriously affects your marriage. Getting a good and experienced marriage counselor can help sort through the roots of these misconceptions and how they can be corrected.

Getting A Marriage Counselor in Provo, Utah

Triston Morgan is one reputable marriage counselor in Provo, Utah that can provide you with therapy and counseling in a non-confrontation atmosphere.  As a licensed marriage counselor, he is there to help you and your mate have a deeper understanding of the myths that have become ingrained in your relationship and provides the tools for you to successfully deal with these. Morgan is PREPARE/ENRICH certified and a member of the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists.

Triston Morgan has practiced marriage and family counseling in Utah and has worked with couples and teens in various settings, including community therapy centers, residential programs for adolescents, drug and alcohol rehabilitation clinics and wilderness therapy programs.


A mariage wracked by infedility. Trouble with a rebellious teenager. Issues with sexual addiction, alcoholism or drug abuse. These issues have a considerable impact on a marriage or on a family. People may mistakenly hope that these problems are just a phase and that they will blow away sometime in the future. However, the wounds and scars caused by these issues often not just result in cracks in our relationships. They sometimes result in seriously deep crevices that may need more work, and perhaps the help of family counseling.

How Marriage or Family Therapy can Help

People often see a marriage or family therapist as a balm, a cure-all for the problems they are facing. Or, sometimes, people go into therapy at a point where the problems overwhelm the relationship and the couple is simply going through marriage counseling as the last nod off before getting a divorce.

The question is, why does family counseling or therapy do? Why should a couple or family go and seek therapy services? In what ways can family counseling help?

Fostering open communications. Oftentimes, poor communications is the cause of conflict. And over time, as people fail to communicate feelings and simply gloss over the issues, the problems become too big to manage. There may be blow-ups that cause major fights. In addition, there are also family environments that prevent open communications. Family members may not feel comfortable talking about issues honestly. For instance, a spouse may feel awkward saying personal information in front of the spouse for fear of a negative reaction. Or, a child may feel reluctact to share his feelings for fear of a confrontation.

A good marriage or family counselor can help foster open and honest communications by providing an environment that is non-threatening and non-confrontational. When open communication flows (between family members and between the therapist and the clients), solutions can be discussed. The facilitator can also help family members become better communicators so that there are no further communication problems.

Provide problem-solving skills. Family counselors can help equip family members with the necessary skills to deal with issues that cause conflict. This includes dealing with depression, developing self-confidence, anger management and dealing with loss or grief. Sometimes, if there is an issue with alcoholism or drug abuse, a substance abuse counselor can help the client break free from the addiction.

Helps you deal with changes in life. As they say, life is a constant change and it never comes in smooth patterns. There are instances where the changes and the crises are too complicated or too heavy for you to bear. Even happy occasions such as the birth of a baby can cause an emotional upheaval. A therapist can help guide you through these upheavals so that you know how to respond to these.

Helps individuals, couples and families deal with stress. The loss of a job. A serious sickness of a partner. The death of a loved one. When these strike, people are sometimes ill-equipped to deal with these stressful situations. And this can have a serious effect on relationships, depending on how each family member reacts. Some may deal with the stress by being aggressive. Some may handle it by pulling away from loved ones. Therapy can help people deal with stress in such a way that is relationships are built and strengthened, not destroyed.

Help in overcoming the past. Past sins and mistakes have a tendency to haunt a relationship. A spouse may not easily get over a past bout of infidelity. Therapy can help mend the ridges so that the couple or family can move forward.

These are just some of the reasons why couples or families seek therapy. Once you realize the need for therapy, it is important that you don’t wait too long to get it. By that time, it may be too late. Don’t wait until things have seriously snowballed and heading downhill. Even if your partner or other family members refuse to go into therapy, going into it by yourself will still prove helpful.

Family Counselors in Provo, Utah

If you live in the Provo, Utah area, Triston Morgan is happy to help you with couples and family therapy services. Triston Morgan is licensed to practice marriage and family therapy in Utah and he has years of experience under his belt, particularly in the area of dealing with couples, teens and those with issues with regards to drugs or substance abuse.

Triston Morgan hilds a master’s degree and Ph.D. in marriage and family therapy, from Loma Linda University and Brigham Young University, respectively. Morgan is also certified to provide PREPARE/ENRICH courses. He has written books and for various journals and is an esteemed member of the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists.



Families can be our source of joy and pride. But sometimes they can also be a source of pain and heartaches. There may be fights, disagreements and arguments. There may be spurts of rebellion or other destructive situations. But still, we carry on because we are fighting for people that we love, for people who matter.

The occasional conflict among family members is to be expected. Conflicts happen. However, there are times when the struggles cause deeper damage and stress to the family. It is often important to identify some of the reasons why families struggle so that family members can make efforts to prevent conflict from happening unnecessarily. With hard work (and sometimes the help of a Utah family therapist), family members can get to a win/win result.

What are some of the common reasons why families struggle?

Lack of communication. Sometimes we speak with harsh words when “soft” ones will do. Sometimes we fail to listen to what is being said (or left unsaid). Conflicts also arise when people fail to express feelings and expectations and then blow up when these expectations are not met. For instance, parents may be sending mixed signals – being permissive one moment and being really strict the next. Lack of communication among family members can result in bitterness, shouting matches and fights. It will help for family members to develop communication skills – to learn to listen, clarify and contemplate what others are trying to say. This is especially necessary when children get to their teens and start being uncommunicative and sullen. Developing good communication skills earlier on will do your family good during this time. One important aspect in communication is learning to say “I’m sorry” and saying “You’re forgiven.” with equal grace.

Lack of or no respect. This goes for respect for the spouse, respect for a child, respect for a parent and respect for a sibling. Respect is one of the main ingredients in maintaining peace in the family. When respect is not present, spouses tend to should angry and foul words to each other. Children start to talk back and use foul words with their siblings. Respect also has to do with a family member’s privacy and property. Respect teaches us that each one has value and is worth being treated properly.

Tendency to take other family members for granted. The truth is, we are sometimes kinder to other people (even strangers!) than we are with our family. We forget to say the magic words such as “thank you”, “excuse me” or “please”.  We also easily forgive other people for mistakes that we don’t allow to simply pass when it is our sibling or loved one who does it.

Setting unrealistic standards. This commonly happens between the parent and the child. A parent may have set unrealistic expectations that don’t match the child’s abilities or the parent expects a child to take on responsibilities when the child is not yet ready. For instance, a parent may dream of having a virtuoso pianist, ace basketball player or straight ‘A’ student. This puts undue pressure on the child and makes him feel frustrated that he can’t meet the parent’s expectations.

Favoritism.  A parent who shows that he favors one child over the other sets the family up for conflict. It becomes deep-seated over time, causing resentment among siblings and pain to the child who feels that he is being loved less. The words “Why can’t you be like your brother here?” may be some of the harshest words a child can hear.

Changes/Crises in the family. There is a long list. A new addition to the family (a baby). Moving to another house. A child starting to go to school. The children’s teenage years. A family member getting sick. Parents getting a divorce. Problems in the family’s finances. These are some souces of conflict within the home.

These are just some of the causes of conflicts in the family. In the complicated arena of families, there are more. The point is, sometimes these conflicts produce wounds and scars that may take time and professional help (such as family counseling) to overcome.

With regular marriage and family therapy, loved ones can learn how to work as a team to sort out the conflict and get results that are satisfying to all family members. This is especially true if there are other issues underlying such as drug abuse or alcoholism (where you may need to work with a substance abuse counselor).

Finding Family Counseling in Provo, Utah

If you are located in Utah and would like to get the help of a family therapist, consider Mr. Triston Morgan. Triston Morgan is a licensed family therapist in the state of Utah, particularly in the city of Provo. Morgan provides therapy in a safe and non-confrontational environment where family members, couples or individuals can thresh out issues in order to strengthen relationships.

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Orem UT 84097
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