A couple discusses what they are looking for in therapy with a potential marriage counselor.

How To Choose The Right Therapist For Your Marriage

If you and your partner have decided to go to couple’s therapy, you may be stuck on what comes next. Where should you go? Who should you see? Here are some tips on how to find the right therapist for your relationship in order to get the best results for your marriage.

Religious Preferences

First of all, decide on whether or not you want to see a religious counselor or not. Some counseling bases practices on religious beliefs. If you and your partner are not religious, then you’ll want to find a therapist who feels the same way. Most therapists will disclose their religious preferences on their websites, but you can always call and ask before making an appointment.

Marriage Values

If you and your partner are not open to divorce as an option, you may need to discuss that up front with your therapist. Some counselors will flat out tell you if you need to get divorced or if they think your marriage will stand the test of time. If you are wanting a way to make your marriage work no matter what, let your therapist know ahead of time that divorce is not an option you want to discuss. This could prevent some uncomfortable conversations from happening in the future.

Shared Beliefs

Make sure you, your partner, and your therapist share common core goals. It’s a good idea to ask your potential therapist how long he or she has been a therapist, how he or she defines relationship success, and what exactly he or she believes is the right way to attack your relationship problems. If you don’t agree on how to work together, this isn’t going to be a good doctor-patient relationship. If you aren’t comfortable with your therapist’s methods, your marriage will continue to suffer.

Personal Involvement

It’s important to find a counselor who truly cares about you, your partner, and the future of your relationship. If you find yourself in a session with a therapist who doesn’t seem interested in you or your problems, you’ve got a bad therapist. Make sure you find someone who takes a personal interest in helping you fix your relationship without getting so involved they being to develop a bias. You need a third party opinion with a friendly, caring attitude. If your therapist cares about you and your partner, you will have better results.

It may take time, but you are allowed to shop around for therapists. If the first one doesn’t work out, you have every right to end your time with him or her and move on to a new therapist. Try to give each one enough time for you and your partner to decide if he or she will truly work out. Keep trying until you find the right one.

Last Updated: August 19, 2014