Marriages, even the best marriages, have problems. It is impossible for two people to live together, share everything and not fight occasionally. It is those little behaviors that in the beginning, were cute. Now, those same behaviors throw you both into a battle.
Trouble in relationships today are caused by money issues, lack of intimacy and division of chores, just to name a few. These are very common subjects that many families face. You are not alone when it comes to the occasional struggles in your relationship.
There are times, however, where you may feel the struggles are overwhelming and leave you wondering if you need help with your marriage from a professional counselor.
Keep reading to learn ten signs that suggest you may benefit from marriage counseling.
1. You Feel More Like Roommates
It happens. You get caught up in your hectic routines and before you know it two years have gone by, or longer, and you feel like you are living with a roommate, not a partner. You feel comfortable having the other around, but your interaction is limited to watching television together after one of you cooks dinner.
Then one of you goes to bed, while the other stays up later to finish work or watch more television. One of you falls asleep on the couch and the other takes the bed, with the dogs. You wake up and start the routine all over again. If this sounds familiar, counseling can help.
2. Financial Infidelity
If you discover your partner has lied to you about spending money, it may be time to consider marriage counseling. Trust is the foundation on which we build our relationships. Lying about financials, or anything for that matter, weakens that foundation. Financial infidelity can be just as painful as sexual infidelity.
3. Sexual Infidelity
Betrayal can come in many forms, but sexual infidelity makes your partner feel unworthy. The one having an affair may think they are only harming themselves, or pleasing themselves. However, an extramarital affair can devastate the self-esteem of your partner.
Sexual infidelity is not just a physical betrayal. It is a mental one as well. Forgiveness and rebuilding after a betrayal of this nature almost always requires the help of a counselor.
4. Repeat Requests
Have you been asking your partner to help you, for years, without any response? For instance, have you repeatedly asked your partner for a few minutes each night, so you can relax from the day, unwind, and get ready to accomplish the evening tasks? Are you still waiting for this to happen?
Marriage counseling can help you find the answer as to why your requests are not being met. It may be a simple communication problem. It may be something requiring additional help. It is worth finding out.
5. Everything They Do Annoys You
Your partner cannot do anything right. They brush their teeth the wrong way, load the dishwasher the wrong way, and they even clean the house the wrong way. They are helping you, yes, but they are not doing it the way you want it to be done.
When they ask you how they can improve, you get mad that they even asked you such a question. Underlying anger or situations never addressed in the past may reappear in the form of annoyance with your partner.
A marriage counselor can help you identify the underlying emotions and work through what is really bothering you so you can move on.
6. You Do Not Fight Enough
I know, this seems odd to hear, you may not be fighting enough. Sometimes a lack of fighting can indicate a lack of interest in important family matters. If there is a lack of interest, you may also be feeling that your relationship is not worth fighting for.
You become apathetic and before long, you both allow bad behaviors to take over your marriage. Doing so leads to negative feelings and connection. Marriage counseling can teach you how to address your difference of opinions effectively, look for solutions where both members feel heard.
7. Your Fights Are Abusive
We often hurt the ones we love the most. We assume they will forgive us each time. What we do not realize is that abusive behavior, over time, can create both emotional and physical consequences that are negative for the entire family.
Abuse can appear in many forms: verbal, physical, emotional, and psychological. Learning how to avoid being abusive, and how to break away from abuse, can be done with support and education from a marriage counselor.
When you or your partner is fighting an addiction, you can benefit from help. Addiction has been part of the cause for many divorces. These divorces may have been avoided had marriage counseling been a part of the solution.
Too often, addicts go to counseling and get sober. Family members go to counseling on their own to learn to support a person in recovery. The other element needed to fight addiction is couple’s counseling.
9. You Think About a Life on Your Own
If you are already having thoughts about the things you can do, the places you can go and the life you can lead without your partner, counseling can be a first option. When you think of yourself living a life without your partner and these thoughts make you happy, this of course is okay, however processing if there are possible ways to get your needs met in your current relationship or marriage may be helpful.
Even if your decision does not change in the end, marital counseling can benefit both of you allowing an opportunity for closure and processing of how you decided to choose a life on your own.
10. Your Partner Has Been Begging You to Get Counseling
Even if just one of you thinks your marriage needs help, then it needs help. If your partner is unhappy for some reason, love them enough to find out what it is. This is a person you dedicated your life to and they are worth the time it takes to attend marriage counseling.
If for no other reason, attend counseling to be heard and recognized for the strong partner you are.