Overcoming Couples Therapy Stigma…
Going to therapy, whether marital therapy or individual therapy, can be wonderfully helpful and healing but stigma still exists and for couples wanting relationship help, couples therapy stigma can sometimes be a block toward getting the help they need.
If you’re ever at a social gathering and the subject of seeing a couples therapist, marriage counselor or individual therapist, comes up, chances are there will be lots of differing perspectives on the subject. Some might be 100% on board with the benefits of therapy. But, there might be one or two others that convey their negative beliefs.
Seeing a therapist can spark negative beliefs from people that truly don’t believe in the benefit of therapy. And while this post isn’t intended to change anyone’s mind, because if therapy – whether individual therapy or couples therapy – isn’t a right fit for you, that’s completely ok! And good that you know that about yourself…
But for those that are contemplating reaching out for professional help but are troubled by possible stigma associated, this post, I hope, can help de-stigmatize couples therapy allowing you the freedom to ask for what you need.
Couples Therapy Stigma Thoughts
Often, what can prevent couples from getting counseling are concerns or thoughts about what others might think if they found out.
They might fear:
- Other people’s judgements.
- Fear their own judgments of reaching out for help.
- Get caught in their own thoughts evoking feelings of shame or guilt.
There are many reasons couples therapy stigma may still exist. But if you’re trying to decide whether relationship help is right for you, here are some thoughts to consider.
Realize Courage over Fear
It takes tremendous courage to begin examining things in your life or relationship that aren’t working, or in areas where you need help.
It can be difficult to ask for help and when you’re at a place in your relationship where you’re struggling and want help but aren’t sure what to do, it takes courage to reach out and ask for what you need.
Courage to begin the journey into healing. Into creating the relationship you want with your partner or spouse. Courage to change…
Compassion over Judgment
Rather than let other people’s negative thoughts related to therapy stop you from doing what’s right for you. You might consider taking a moment to write out your thoughts – this can often provide insight and clarity. And can help manage the recurring circular thoughts that might be swirling around…
- Journal your pros and cons related to seeking help.
- Journal what couples therapy stigma might be preventing you from reaching out.
- And write about where you can have compassion for yourself.
- Compassion for how hard it is to ask for help, how hard it is to let what other people might think go…
Realizing that when you reach out for help, you are doing so to help your relationship, to help your marriage.
And having the compassion to know that reaching out for help is a sign of strength. You don’t owe anyone any explanations as to why you are seeking professional help. You are making a decision that’s right for you and your partner.
Prevention instead of Couples Therapy Stigma
When things are out of balance in your relationship. When you’re struggling with whether to stay or go. Struggling with whether you can ever trust each other again. Wondering if you are even in love anymore…These are the emotional places where couples therapy can help.
Don’t let six years go by without getting the help you need. (Six years is the average time a couple waits to seek couples therapy or marriage counseling).
Prevention is the key to changing…
*Blog intended for educational and informational purposes only.