Couples therapy is a great place to safely share any struggles you and your partner are having in your relationship. Even the happiest and strongest of relationships are going to have their ups and downs.
However, what do you do if your partner is reluctant or unwilling to attend therapy with you? Here are four ways to broach the subject with your partner while still maintaining love and respect.
If you haven’t really talked about couples therapy in depth, or at all, it’s important not to spring the idea on your partner, especially if you feel they’ll be pretty resistant and defensive. Try to set aside a specific time that won’t be stressful for either of you so you can discuss it calmly and thoroughly.
Your tone conveys a lot. Make sure you avoid accusations and an angry attitude. Approach the conversation with a tone of care and concern, emphasizing that your desire to attend therapy comes from wanting a healthy and happy relationship for both of you, and that problems you may be having are not totally on them.
When talking about the idea of going to couples therapy, it’s important to talk about how therapy will benefit you, and how not going to therapy could harm your relationship. Be open and honest about the reasons you’d like to attend therapy sessions and your fears should you not go.
There are some common excuses to not go to therapy, including:
When your partner is sharing their worries about why they don’t want to attend therapy, always take the fears seriously and don’t shut them down. Instead, offer correct information.
If they’re concerned about privacy, help them understand that therapy is always confidential. Also remind them that a relationship with a therapist is built over a long period of time while building trust and rapport.
If your partner still seems unwilling to attend couples therapy, you may need to wait and bring up the subject again at a later time. Forcing someone to go to therapy is never the answer; doing so could even add to the issues you’re already experiencing.
If you’d like more information on what couples therapy looks like at our practice in Los Alamitos, California, you can call us at 562-600-2831 or click the book online scheduler on our website to request an appointment with us today.