Everyone who is half of a couple knows that relationships are challenging.  Whether you are married, living together, or dating, couple-hood can be tough.  How do you know whether the issues that you are dealing with are a normal, routine part of being in a relationship or they are more serious concerns that could be improved through couples counselling?

If you aren’t sure how to proceed with the challenges facing your relationship, check out these signs and symptoms.  If you are encountering any of these problems in your relationship, you should consider seeing a couples counsellor to help you through these issues.

Unresolved or Repetitive Conflict:
Sometimes couples tend to argue about the same topic over and over again without reaching any sort of resolution.  Perhaps you argue about money or parenting, and you never come to any sort of compromise or agreement, so the issue continues to plague your relationship.  Whether you are not fighting fairly or one party just refuses to discuss the issue any further, you need help at this point.  In cases like this, a marriage counselor can often provide the unbiased, third-party advice that you need to bring the two of you together and help you find a mutually agreeable solution.

Repetitive conflict is a similar problem.  In some cases, a couple argues about an issue frequently.  They may reach an agreement about how to handle it, or one person may agree not to make the same mistake again.  However, they don’t stick to their agreement, or the promise is broken.  This is another situation where you could benefit from the guidance of a couples counsellor.

Feelings of Growing Apart:
It is common for couples, especially those who have been together for a long time, to reach a point in their relationship where they feel like they are growing apart and just aren’t as close as they once were.  It is common, but that doesn’t mean that you have to continue to feel that way; with the help of a couples counsellor, you can renew the closeness in your marriage.  Marriages go through stages, and you need to continually make an effort to renew the feelings that brought you together.

Violence or Substance Abuse:
Violence is a major red flag in a relationship, and you cannot excuse it in any situation, even if it has only happened once.  You need to contact a professional for intervention as soon as possible.  If children are involved, be sure to make their health and safety a priority.

Likewise, substance abuse is a problem that cannot be ignored.  For the health and safety of everyone involved in the relationship, you should immediately seek professional help.

Daily Activities Are Interrupted:
If the state of the relationship is creating such stress in your life that you are unable to carry on with your normal daily activities, then it is time to seek counselling.  You may be feeling so stressed that you are missing work or have stopped taking care of your other responsibilities or just don’t feel like participating in hobbies or other things that you normally enjoy.  In any case, you don’t have to continue feeling like this.  A counselor can help you find a happier, less stressful place in your marriage so that you can return to your normal daily activities.

The Family Enhancement Centre offers couples counselling as well as family counselling, youth counselling, and art and play counselling.  We have many resources available for you.  Get in touch with us today to find a location near you or to book an appointment with one of our professional team members.

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