Previous articles described the kinds of difficulties that signify that a marriage may be in trouble. But, how does you know whether you need to see a couples therapist? Or, whether you must weather the storm of everyday marital difficulties? All marriages encounter challenges. Couples develop need to develop trust. Therefore, they will need to learn to:
agree on values, goals and life styles.
support each other.
develop a capacity for sexual and emotional intimacy.
learn to treat each other with respect.
Similarly, they must develop the capacity to collaborate on the tasks of daily living. That is, they need to:
adjust to living together.
regulate distance and closeness.
share the responsibilities of maintaining a household together. For example, they must learn to:
agree on how to manage money.
agree on how to manage time.
decide upon a schedule that works for both partners.
Also, if they are considering children, they will have to:
decide whether to have children.
adjust to the birth of a child. For instance, they must share child rearing responsibilities. In addition, they need to adjust and respond sensitively to the needs of the children.
endure the bumps on the path to nurturing their child to adulthood and beyond. That is, they must endure the terrible twos, adolescence and more.
work to preserve intimacy in the marriage. For instance, they need to find ways to deepen their marital relationship even while in the throes of child rearing.
Beyond this, they need to develop proficiency in:
dealing with conflict.
Finally, they have to work together to deal with the outside world. That is they need to:
develop work-life balance.
establish relationships with friends and neighbors.
work together to preserve their relationship.
Set boundaries with their parents and in-laws.
Individuals and couples who are uncertain as to whether to seek individual psychotherapy or couples therapy are welcome to call me: 301.656.9650.
Marriage counselor and couples therapist, further reading:
Please note: In this era of COVID-19, I am providing online psychotherapy, psychoanalysis, clinical consultation, supervision & career counseling. If you would like to see me as your couples therapist in Washington DC, or for individual therapy, feel free to give me a call: 301.656.9650.