How does a couple know if online marriage counseling or an online relationship app is right for them? Let’s look at some different relationship growth choices.
Marriage counseling helps couples learn new skills and ways of relating. In a sense, there is a peeling of the onion, where people become more aware of behaviors they engage in that do not facilitate closeness and the feelings that lie under those behaviors.
Traditional marriage counseling involves sitting with a couples therapist – and if the therapist is trained in couples work and skilled, the couple should make progress.
In regular online marriage counseling, the couple does the session via a visual online platform with a therapist who is in a different location.
And we have online relationship apps and systems that teach the couple without a therapist being present. These systems and apps vary in quality. Some consist of videos for the couple to watch. Others teach the couple with workbooks and e-books or some combination of the above. Some systems like WeConcile® are designed to be used with or without a therapist. If, while using an online system, you also work with a therapist, you may choose to see your therapist less frequently to make your couples work more cost-effective.
Finally, there are books you can read and workshops you can take. After a workshop, you might feel great for a while, but how long will it last? Will you be able to integrate the learning. Books fall into the same category. You can learn, but will you be able to practice what you have learned? It takes iteration (learning through repetition over time) to create new behaviors. That said, both of these options are far better than doing nothing.
How do you decide what is right for you?
- Can you afford regular couples therapy? Generally, a couples session should be 1.5 – 2x as long as an individual session and correspondingly more expensive. But with the right therapist, it is a great option. If you cannot afford couples therapy, then absolutely consider using an online system. You can get the assistance you need without a live therapist.
- Does one or both of you prefer to keep your issues between the two of you or refuse to see a therapist? If so, then an online marriage restoration system is a better choice.
- Do you have issues with time and schedule? This points to choosing an online system rather than a therapist, where you can work at your own pace and schedule.
- Has either of you had a bad experience with a therapist? This can often cause a person to shut the door on subsequent therapy. This again points the couple in the direction of an online program.
- Do you live in an area where there is a lack of skilled couples therapists? If so, you may want to work remotely with a therapist, or use an online program.
As you can see, there are many choices on how to best improve your relationship, including using online marriage counseling. It is really up to you and your partner how you wish to proceed.
You can read more about how to decide what is right for you here.
If you or your partner struggle with believing change is possible in your relationship, read this article.