Marriage problems happen!
It might not be comfortable for many to talk openly about their marriage problems but it’s natural to experience bumps in the road, ups and downs, throughout your marriage.
If you think about marriage problems in terms of – two wonderfully unique and different people joining their worlds together, sharing who they are, their likes/dislikes, they’re habits, etc. – chances are there will be times when you don’t agree.
Times when you don’t even get along for that matter!
But the question is…when is it time for marriage counseling?
How do you know when your marriage problems mean you should see a marriage counselor?
Here are some common marriage problems that are signs you may need help.
1. Communication has changed and you’re avoiding talking to each other
Marriage problems around communication are so common.
When communication starts to break down and you can’t talk to each other about important issues, it can be one of the most frustrating and lonely feelings.
You might be stuck in a dance of one partner wanting to talk things through and the other shutting down and not wanting to engage.
You also might be stuck in a pattern of avoiding certain issues just to keep the peace.
And over time this might start building resentment.
It’s important and necessary for spouses to be able to talk openly and honestly with each other.
And when you feel like you can’t – either because you’re trying to keep the peace or feel like you’re talking to someone who isn’t listening – it might be time to consider seeing a marriage counselor to help get to the heart of what’s happening between you and to help turn these patterns around.
2. Don’t know how to resolve an argument
Many couples argue. That doesn’t in and of itself mean marriage counseling is necessary.
So, when does this marriage problem need marriage counseling.
When arguing becomes an issue between you and you don’t have the tools to help end an argument and repair with one another. Marriage counseling can help with this.
Often, there are unmet needs at the heart of arguments.
But these needs get missed. What often happens is we begin to focus on how the other is acting and not on the initial need expressed.
For example, if one spouse raises their voice or has a tone. The focus often turns toward how loud the other person is being or the tone they are using.
When spouses don’t know how to resolve an argument and get to the heart of what’s happening between them, and resolve the issue, then this could lead to a pattern of “sweeping things under the rug” and “waiting for time” to heal hurt feelings. And never fully circling back to understand what’s hurting the other.
3. Criticism has become more of the norm in your relationship
Continuous criticism can be toxic causing marriage problems between you.
When criticism is more of an attack on someone’s character and who they are as a person, this can be incredibly damaging to relationships.
When a spouse is continuously critical of their partner, they are continuously focusing on what they perceive are their partner’s weaknesses or shortcomings.
This can often cause the spouse on the receiving end to go into defense mode.
Defending how they aren’t what they’re being criticized for. Or, they might begin to point fingers back.
Marriage counseling can help couples stuck in these types of marriage problems.
4. Reoccurring issues continue to cause fights between you and aren’t able to be resolved
When spouses don’t know how to repair after an argument, they are missing important parts of each other that aren’t able to be expressed, heard and understood. Aren’t able to be seen. Aren’t able to be healed.
Marriage counseling can be significant in helping spouses stuck in reoccurring fights break these patterns.
5. Infidelity (Emotional or Physical Affair)
For marriages that are monogamous, infidelity can be one of the biggest breaches of trust.
It can be difficult to work through all of the various thoughts and feelings both partners have without professional help.
This is where marriage counseling can help.
6. Breach of trust
Breach of trust includes infidelity but also includes other areas where your spouse has betrayed you in some way and lost your trust, causing marriage problems.
- Breaches of trust around handling of finances
- Continuously repeating a pattern of saying he/she will do something but then never does
- Confiding in your spouse only to learn they have broken your trust and told others
7. Feeling distant and disconnected
When things change between you and you no longer feel like lovers.
Intimacy is no longer there or has changed significantly and causing marriage problems.
When your relationship starts to feel more like a roommate or business situation and you don’t know how to fix it.
These types of marriage problems can be helped with marriage counseling.
A professional therapist can help distant couples learn how to reconnect so they don’t feel so disconnected from each other.
8. Sex life isn’t what it used to be
Sex ebbs and flows in relationships, that’s normal. So how do you know when it’s causing marriage problems.
When your sex life is non existent or has changed considerably in some way and is causing discord and stress. This can be an indicator that you might need a marriage counselor.
Don’t put off getting help.
Studies show that couples often wait too long before seeking professional help. Please don’t let that be you.
I also offer online therapy for couples and individuals wanting help but aren’t sure their schedule can accommodate driving to an office. Online therapy is a way we can work with each other in a more convenient fashion for you!