- Find out if there are Marriage Counseling in your area offering the service and what you can find on them on the internet.
- Verify if people you trust about health and relationship issues know any of them.
- Ask them who they might suggest.
- You can also ask your doctor, a family member or friend that knows a little about successful marriage. It usually helps to get referrals when choosing a therapist for such an important issue.
- Do not rely only on such sources. It is not because your sister when through the process with a specific counselor and it worked that it will for you too.
Is this counselor the right person for you and your spouse?
When you have a short list of the potential marriage counselor, to select one, find the answers to the following questions.
Some of these questions are to determine the experience and the competence of the professional. But most of them is also to find out how comfortable you are with they way he/she respond to you and do you think that you will trust that person when you go to a session.
- Is he/she licensed?
- How long have you been doing counseling?
- Do you give referrals?
- What is your price, covered by insurance, the frequency of sessions, location, office hours, etc.?
- Are you married? Divorced? how often?
- How old are you?
- If you have an idea of what you think are your issues, ask about previous experience.
- If there alcohol or drug addiction issues, anger problem, personality disorders, taking medications for these issues, verify his past experience with couples having these issues. If he handled only a few cases, consider finding another one. These are complex issues and a long experience might make a huge difference.
- With… young children, adolescents, …
- Try to get a feel by asking what he/she thinks and measure your comfort level with the way he/she handles you and the questions. Is your trust toward that person increasing or decreasing?
- How often does the counseling end with the spouses divorcing? If the answer is a lot better than 50/50, this is a warning flag: he/she is exceptionally good or lying.
- If needed, ask more questions, why of his success rate.
- Or make sure to get some referrals.
- How many sessions on average?
- Answers to good to be true are warning signals unless you were referred by people you yourself know very well and that are highly reliable.
- What type of therapy does he/she rely upon? The purpose of asking is to verify if you are comfortable with his answers or additional questions he asks you. Does it make you more trustworthy and comfortable with the individual or less? That will help you choose later on.
Finally, complete your questions with one on the end result. What should you expect from the Therapy with him/her?
If possible, try to contact and evaluate at 3-4 counselor.
Because you will get better yourself at evaluating them and will make a better choice.
Don’t hesitate to contact them again to clarify and complete you assessment.
If you hesitate to do that remember that
a) it is an important step in your life.
b) you will spend between $1,000 to $4,000 and more.
It is worth doing your homework.
Here is the link again to start searching.