We’re Going to Counseling. You Should, Too.

Investment

Set of actions with the intent of earning profit.

Relationships may not be what comes to mind first when you hear “invest,” but my husband and I have recently made the decision to invest in our marriage in the form of marriage counseling. No real surprise because my word of the year for 2020, as shown above, is invest. True to the definition, we want to put in thoughtful work and time to ensure that we profit with a happy life, avoid unnecessary conflicts, and ensure our future together is solid.

For some, though, this revelation still comes as a surprise to some because we don’t really argue, no one has committed a ‘deal-breaker’ act, and generally, we’re really happy. I’ll tell you a secret, though: part of why we’re already pretty good about conflict resolution and investing time in each other is because we both had failed marriages in the past, and during those times we went to marriage counseling. For both of us, though our past relationships didn’t work out, we learned a wealth from counseling during those times. We’ve brought those tools and lessons into our current marriage, and I think we both feel confident that continuing to add to our marriage toolbox is a smart choice. 

Here are five reasons you should consider counseling even when you’re happy:

  • Learn how to fight fair. 

    • The rules for fighting fair seem simple, but often this is something that takes practice and you can’t do better if you don’t know better. Counseling can help you get the verbiage you both need to ensure you’re hearing each other, respecting each other, and staying focused on a compromise over winning. How you speak to each other matters. Like love languages, everyone also has a preferred apology language. Learning these things about yourselves and each other can be invaluable! When the TEAM wins, you both win. 
  • Improve Communication

    • It’s amazing how you can avoid many moments of disappointment and upset when you know how to define, set, and express your expectations and boundaries. Counseling can help you learn and integrate this process until it becomes second nature. Disappointment becomes a thing of the past when you know how to ask for exactly what you want.
  • Help through transitions

    • Whether the transition you face is related to moving, births or deaths, or changes at work they can make life more difficult. Counseling can help you navigate all types of feelings, including sad or fearful ones. It’s also a great tool for learning to meet in the middle when your emotions around a situation are on a see-saw of opposition.
  • An unbiased opinion

    • Talking to a trusted friend or family member may help you resolve small conflicts, but your loved ones will take much longer to forgive and forget than you will. There are no awkward Sunday dinners where your mother is glaring at your partner because they said something rude to you months ago. Professional counselors are not rooting for one person over another, they want to see you win together. 
  • Counseling can help to build intimacy

    • Both sexual and emotional intimacy can increase when both partners feel seen, heard, loved, and respected. When your marriage practice is investing in “us” you can grow together in communication and trust. You may just find that you’ve never felt more close and connected.

With technology today, and thanks in some part to COVID, you can now see marriage counselors virtually as well. This is a great option especially for our local oil field families who are often separated by work commitments. Counseling, even when you’re not at the brink of separating, can be a way to take your 7/10 marriage to a 9/10 marriage (hey, there’s always room for improvement.)

Sarah is a Cecilia native currently living in Lafayette's oil center. She's the mom to a Brady Bunch of 7 children ages 13 to 5. Married to Clint, her 'environmental superhero', they enjoy traveling often. The self-proclaimed queen of big family travel planning; she's also taken up GLAMPing as she explores the State and National Parks as part of their year of road schooling. Sarah started Real Product Talk, a product testing and secret shopper service, with her online bestie of 10+ years in 2014 and continues to grow as a major player in her field. When she's not working from home, she's can be found serving the less fortunate in Lafayette alongside Lafayette Mom Writer Ali Comeaux and their non-profit, With Love, Acadiana.