If as a couple you have decided to seek out the services of a marriage counselling professional, you are now faced with the dilemma of narrowing down which counsellor will best meet your criteria. As critical as it can be to get help when a relationship is in a crisis, having a councillor that does not match well with you as a couple may result in further decline of the relationship. The following are a few important considerations to make in advance of choosing a marriage councillor.
1. Set a Budget, and Know the Cost in Advance
Particularly if your marriage has been affected by a financial setback, it is important to recognise that counselling services can be expensive. Each councillor will have their own rate which may be based on a per session cost, or a series of sessions. Be upfront about what you can afford, as it would be counterproductive to begin the process of counselling only to be stalled by expensive bills you cannot afford to pay.
2. Get Referrals or Recommendations
As with any service industry, some have a higher rating for positive customer feedback. Research though available sources whether the councillor you are considering is of high repute. The Internet offers many sites that provide reviews and referrals to qualified professional therapists. Find out whether the councillor you are considering is actively involved and participating in professional organisations and groups dedicated to keeping up to date with current trends and sharing success methods for marriage councillors.
3. Discuss what is important to each of you about your choice of marriage councillors
Before selecting a marriage councillor, it would be appropriate to discuss whether either of you have a strong leaning towards a male or female, married or unmarried councillor. Also, in some cases knowing that the councillor has had a personal experience of the same nature as in the case of substance abuse, financial issues or a history of abuse may make one of the persons in the marriage more comfortable being honest and upfront about personal struggles.
4. Meet with them personally to Get a Sense of their Personality
Though all marriage councillors should display professionalism and uphold the same high level of code of ethics with their clients – there is still an initial response that may signal warnings if this is potentially not a good fit for your counselling sessions. On the contrary, having someone who is responsive, eager to listen, professional and of credibility will no doubt be able to assist you to make progress in the right direction towards resolving the conflicts currently affecting your marriage.
These are just a few of the considerations you make want to make in advance of choosing a marriage counselling professional. Each situation is unique, and finding a suitable councillor that can help you find solutions to existing problems that are causing marriage stress may take time. However, the time you invest in finding the right fit will prove valuable…