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  • You Might Have Needed Couples Therapy 6 Years Ago

    According to well-regarded research conducted by Dr. John Gottman, the average couple waits six years after difficulties arise to start couples therapy. Six years? Yes, that’s right. Six whole years of struggle and weight on a couple’s relationship is a lot to bare. So how come people wait so long to seek help?

     

    Fear Of Stigma

    It is a sad reality that there is still a negative stigma attached to needing assistance with mental health. Many people have a difficult time admitting that they need help because they don’t want to seem “stupid” or “weak.” In the case of couples therapy, many people don’t want to admit that there is a problem. And even if they do admit it to themselves, they don’t want anyone else to know.

     

    However, many couples actually engage in couples therapy and nobody would ever know. Some go even if there aren’t issues to simply strengthen relationships. Just remember that you and your partner’s mental health is important and needs help just as much as your physical health.

     

    Fearing Diagnosis 

    Many are concerned about facing their diagnosis head-on. There’s one thing to know that there is a problem and another feeling when you have a name to put to it. Some find comfort in knowing, while others don’t.

     

    A misconception that some also hold is that they will live with this issue forever once they’re diagnosed. But that’s simply not true. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, between 70 and 90 percent of those who pursue psychological treatment will recover from their mental health issues. So you have a good chance of recovering! And that means you likely won’t be in therapy for the rest of your life unless you choose to.

     

    Fearing Judgment 

    Your therapist isn’t a professional because they like to judge people. They went through extensive training and education to be there to help you work through your problems without personal judgment or condescension. Your therapist will create a safe space that will allow you and your partner to feel you can express anything without judgment.

     

    Fearing Opening Up To A Stranger

    It’s natural to not feel ready to tell a stranger all of your deep problems and therapists get it. But this is actually one of the best things about therapy! You start off with a blank slate, ready to build a relationship with your therapist. Moreover, the outside perspective that has no ties to your personal life is a great tool to have when solving problems. There are no emotional attachments or personal biases that your therapist will struggle with.

     

    Don’t be afraid to contact a therapist if you and your partner are facing struggles in your relationship. Don’t wait till it’s too late to seek the help you need. There’s nothing to fear! Just like you would go to the doctor’s office if you were sick, you need to see a couple’s therapist if your relationship is getting rocky.

     

    Contact a local certified counselor, like John Gallagher.