Starting Couples Counselling

Are you starting couples counselling for the first time? Chances are, you might be feeling some nerves, sadness or even relief at being able to seek support for the tough issues in your relationship. Whether you are in a good place and wanting to strengthen your relationship foundation or you’re not sure how to move forward, couples counselling is a healthy and positive step toward peace and healing. Many people are not sure what to expect as they go into couples counselling for the first time. Here’s a cheat sheet with information and tips to help you prepare so that you can get the most out of your couples counselling experience.

Preparation for Couples Counselling

  • Reflect: Before starting couples counselling, take time to reflect on your relationship. In the first session, your counsellor will seek to get to know you as a couple and understand both the highs and lows of your relationship. Sometimes people find it helpful to create a relationship timeline so that they can track significant events or experiences over the years.
  • Areas of concern: When you’re coming into couples counselling, it’s common to dwell on the hurt that you have experienced or the areas where you want your partner to make change. The expression of your wants and needs is a very important part of the couples counselling process. However, don’t forget to take time to think: “What are some areas that I could work on to improve our relationship?”
  • What have you tried: Coming into couple’s counselling, it’s important to share with your therapist what strategies you have tried in the past. Tell them what has worked and what hasn’t worked for you in your areas of concern. This way, you don’t repeat old mistakes and your counsellor has a better idea of how you tick!

Throughout the Counselling Process

  • Invest energy: Far too many people expect that their responsibility for their relationship’s well-being ends when they step into the counselling room. Your counsellor will guide you, provide you strategies and support you to communicate and establish a new dynamic. However, it is vital that you take ownership of your role in this process. To be most effective, relationship counselling involves work from each partner, both inside and outside of the therapy room. Do a self-check: how motivated are you feeling?
  • Individual Counselling: Sometimes throughout the course of couples counselling, you bump into various individual concerns which have an impact on the relationship dynamic. It is very common to seek out individual therapy in conjunction with couples therapy so that you can give time to various issues which cannot be fully unpacked in the relationship sessions.
  • Communicate with Your Therapist: Your counsellor genuinely wants what’s best for you. If you find that something is not working well or you’d like to shift focus in the sessions, tell your counsellor. The counsellors at Blissful Minds are open and eager for feedback so that they can work alongside you in an empowering manner.

For any further questions or to book in with one of our experienced couples counsellors, contact us here.