Your partner says that you both need to go to couples therapy.
The first thought that may run through your mind is to either do an “eye roll” or run as far away as possible.
Yes, you know that your relationship has problems, but you are just not enthusiastic about couples therapy. In fact, you’d rather go to the dentist than a therapist!
Perhaps you’ve heard some of the several myths regarding therapy and doubt that it can really benefit your relationship.
If you are on the fence, consider these myths about couples therapy and what the truth actually is.
Myth #1: Reopening Old Wounds
One myth about couples therapy is that it involves reopening old wound and rehashing the past. Naturally, this can make you feel really uncomfortable and could easily make you feel less than enthusiastic about couples therapy.
Yes, in therapy, reflection is an important part of the process.
However, the idea is to not do a play-by-play recap of every argument you ever had with your partner. Instead, it’s about better understanding each other and why those situations occurred in the first place. That way neither of you has to experience it in the future.
Myth #2: Making You Feel Bad About Yourself
Another myth about couples therapy is that its intention is to somehow make you feel bad about yourself.
This could occur in two ways:
- Making you feel guilty about what happened.
- Being condescending to you so that you feel intellectually inferior.
If these are your reasons why you are not enthusiastic about couples therapy, it makes sense. No one likes being talked down to or manipulated to feel an emotion they don’t want to experience.
Yet, while therapy can be a time of raw emotions, it can help you realize for yourself the effects of your actions—nobody points out your failing, nor tries to rub them in.
Also, a therapist’s job is to ensure you understand everything going on by explaining things in a way they make sense to you. If your therapist isn’t doing that now, you might consider switching to someone who will.
Myth #3: Singling You Out
Nobody likes being attacked from one side, let alone two.
Sometimes people are reluctant to seek out couples counseling because they think their partner and the therapist are in collusion against them. This creates an “us versus them” mentality that only reinforces myths about therapy, and certainly doesn’t help your relationship.
In reality, your therapist wants to help both of you and is not there to take sides in the disputes of your relationship.
Of course, they are not supposed to be distant either. A good therapist can portray caring and understanding while, at the same time, keep their own emotions in check to maintain a degree of neutrality and objectivity as well.
Myth #4: Feeling Judged by Your Therapist
Still, another reason why you might be reluctant to get help is that you are afraid you will be judged by your therapist. You may think, “The therapist is there to tell me everything I am doing wrong, right?”
That is far from the truth.
A therapist only wants to help you, not judge. Even if you are struggling with some dark demons, it is not their place to hold judgment over you. This frees them to be able to only focus on helping you to improve and succeed.
Myth #5: Wasting Your Time
You’ve got better things to do than sit in a sterile office with a therapist and your partner. In fact, your smartphone is probably jam-packed with lists of things that need to get done on your calendar.
You simply just don’t have the time!
However, sometimes you need to slow down and focus on what’s more important, such as your relationship. You may want to put that on your overcrowded smartphone schedule as well.
The myth of couples counseling is that it doesn’t help relationships. As a result, you may not be all that enthusiastic about couples counseling. One feeds off of the other when, in reality, couples counseling is supposed to help.
I would like to help you feel more enthusiastic about couples therapy. Why not learn about how I approach counseling for couples. And if you still have questions afterward, please don’t hesitate to contact me. I’d love to explain how therapy works in detail.