Here’s a question I get a lot, “Is our marriage at the point where we need counseling?”
While that’s a pretty loaded question … and every situation is unique … let me see if I can offer a few thoughts that might provide some clarity.
Just like the fact our wedding rings tarnish and show signs of wear over the years … marriage relationships can get worn, weary and show signs of neglect if they’re not routinely “cleaned.”
How do you know if your marriage is just in a tough season … or if you’re experiencing something much more significant?
Here’s a few behaviors you should be on the lookout for:
1 – Communication Goes Silent – The foundation of relationship is the ability to communicate with each other. If you stop sharing your thoughts and feelings … or don’t feel safe enough to communicate what you’re really thinking, you’ve entered a downward spiral that needs addressed.
2 – Constant Negative Communication – Every couple knows that arguments and conflict are a part of life. As I’ve shared on many occasions, if you don’t have conflict … you don’t care … but if your communication is nothing but negativity towards each other … and doesn’t end in positive resolution … you start laying a foundation of disdain, contempt and anger towards each other that warrants professional intervention.
3 – Non-existent Physical Intimacy – While frequency may change over the years, tapering off completely … or having physical intimacy with no emotional connection is not normal.
4 – You’ve Had or Fantasize about an Affair – We’ve seen many couples overcome affairs … through heartfelt forgiveness, rebuilding of trust, and a renewed emotional, physical and spiritual intimacy … but it takes time … hard work … and more often than not, the guidance of a third party to navigate challenging path.
Proverbs 11:14 states, “Where there is no guidance, a people falls, but in an abundance of counselors there is safety”
If this list hit too close to home, we’d love to chat further with you about our marriage intensive retreats … or help you get in touch with a personal counselor or pastor to help.