Do you know that around 50% of marriages in the US ends up in divorce? There’s also an alarming increase of second-time marriages. It looks like a lot of married couples are in a relationship crisis, but why then couples counseling is still something that sounds like a taboo to many? Why hasn’t it been widely accepted yet?
Compared to others, the divorce rate is 5.2% higher in the 40 to 50 age group, in which most of the divorces were initiated by women, according to a study done by by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This may be because of the increased tendency of women seeking higher education degrees and better-paid jobs. And this may also because of a more open mindset towards ending a marriage due to different reasons such as domestic violence.
Although getting divorced is easier now, not all couples want to end their relationships just like that. In fact, many choose to give their relationship another chance by seeking help from others – couples counseling.
Seeking couples counseling services is giving your relationship another chance.
The reason why the divorce rate is high among the couples aged 40 to 50 is that they’ve reached reached a point in life where routine becomes a killer. The sparks’ gone because of different struggles they’re dealing with in the family and possibly in their lives. Here are some signs that maybe it’s time to consider asking for help:
- When communication is, overall, negative: You don’t talk, you just spend half of your time arguing over the weather, money, kids, your broken car, your work troubles and even your neighbors’ new lawn mower. Everything can become a reason to start a heated argument.
- When you start losing trust: Relationships are built upon trust, and when that starts to quake, you start to question even the stupidest things that can come across your mind, like how and when did that new friend showed up, since when that new hobby started to take that much interest, etc.
- When you feel the need to keep secrets: Of course we all have our personal stuff that we prefer not to talk about, but when you feel that you need to keep things from your partner, then it’s a sign that things aren’t working the way they should.
- When there are severe financial differences: Some of the essential aspects of marriages rely on a good financial management. If one wants to start saving money for retirement and the other spends more from what’s making in a month’s salary, and the tendency doesn’t change over months (or even years), then probably it’s time to seek advice someplace else.
- When there is no intimacy: No one expects marriages to be like the first year over time  as people change, responsibilities show up, and we tend to get accustomed to the same things – meaning that the initial spark may be lost. But if now you don’t even kiss each other goodbye, then something else is going on here.
- When you live separate lives: To put this in a few words, you share a roof, and that’s all. If even your roommate in college was more aware of your routine and things that went on in your life than your spouse, something’s not quite right in your relationship.
If you can relate to one to two of the above signs, then it’s time to sit down and talk about your relationship with your partner. If you can identify more than four of the above signs with your marriage, you should book a session of couples counseling soon. There is still time to fix things if you love each other.
To save your relationship, let the counselor help you. But your effort counts too.
Pick a therapist that really suits you and your partner.
Referral is the best way to find a professional that suits you and your partner. Either a friend who went through the same as you do at the moment, or your parents, or a co-worker you trust, or your doctor, etc. can give a helping hand to find the person who can set a middle-ground to your constant quarrels or a lack of affection.
But be sure your therapist’s opinion isn’t biased towards keeping a marriage no matter what because sometimes, there is no viable way to make a relationship work if the differences are way too many. Also, make sure the therapist is someone who’s neutral when it comes to helping your relationship. A friend of one of the spouses definitely isn’t a good choice. You don’t want a biased opinion that can make the relationship worse than before.
Always remember the good times.
One doesn’t simply marry another person because they see each other in the street, fall in love immediately and then tie the knot; there is so much more behind each love story. Think of the first date you two had, a memorable moment while you were dating, a gift you loved, and bring them along to the therapy session.
Sometimes, the only reason why a therapy works is that the counselor helps us to talk  – yes, talk – without being afraid of what our spouse may say. The counselor is there to help, to make your other half understand your feelings and to help you to understand what your spouse thinks about your relationship.
Commitment is the key.
A healthy marriage takes two, nothing is going to change if both people aren’t willing to work together.
If you get to the point that one believes seeking therapy to mend the relationship is a waste of time, then it’s probably best to move on with your life.
Featured photo credit: Stocksnap via stocksnap.io
|||^||Bureau of Labor Statistics: Marriage and divorce: patterns by gender, race, and educational attainment|
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