Marriage Counseling: 5 Things to Expect from Your First Session

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The sad fact is that half of all marriages in America end in divorce. It’s a worrying statistic, especially if you are experiencing some marriage problems yourself.

But how do you ensure that your marriage doesn’t become another statistic? Well, if you are having some difficulties, then one option is to attend marriage counseling.

If you have never attended any form of counseling before, this might seem like a daunting prospect. But the best way to overcome the fear of the unknown is to do some research. Why not start by reading this handy guide on five things to expect from your first marriage counseling session.


1. Things to Expect at your First Session

The role of a marriage counselor is to facilitate discussion between the two people in the marriage. They will listen, ask questions, and work out what the real problems are.

In your first session, the marriage counselor will start with the basics and find out a little bit about you as individuals and as a couple. This might feel a bit like an interview, but there are no right or wrong answers. It is simply so the counselor can get to know you and your background.


2. Honest Discussion


After you have covered the basics you will then have a frank and honest discussion about your marriage problems.

The success of your marriage counseling will rely on all parties being completely honest with each other. This is the first tough obstacle that many couples face.

It can be hard to hear criticism of your behavior or to examine some of the issues that you hoped might resolve themselves. But if counseling is to work, you have to open up.


3. Expectations and Tasks

Once you have talked about the strengths and the weaknesses of your marriage, you will discuss your expectations. Your counselor may ask you what you expect to gain from the sessions.

Counseling may not be able to fix everything about your marriage, but now is the time to talk about what you hope to achieve.


4. Review Progress


In future sessions, you will be asked to discuss what, if anything, has changed since the last session. However, in your first session, you will discuss what progress you hope to make by next week.

Think about what progress is achievable, and realistic. This could be a change in behavior from one or both partners, fewer arguments, or more talking.


5. Plan for the Future

In your first session, you will also discuss your counseling schedule. From listening to your discussion and expectations, your counselor will tell you how many sessions they think you will need.

Your counselor will also set you some tasks and give you some things to think about ahead of your next session. This will give you both an idea of what to expect, and how long it is likely to take.


Life Hacks at Your Fingertips

So, if you are thinking about marriage counseling, hopefully, this guide has given you an idea of things to expect.

The key to counseling is, to be honest with each other and with your counselor. You will need patience and determination, but counseling can be hugely beneficial.

If you found this article useful, then why not check out some more of our posts on life, love, and health?