People face challenges everywhere — at work, school, and even in marriage. Of course, challenges in marriages are inevitable. But when the two parties involved are willing to work things out, most issues can be easily surmounted. However, there are also situations where married individuals are unwilling or lack the tools or skills to handle their problems, even trivial ones. And as these issues remain unresolved, they compound and deepen the level of disconnection among the partners. As a result, the sparks and stability of the marriage also fade gradually. Things can still work out, and the relationship can be restored if a party is willing to do some work. Try these tips to help you inspire your partner to join couples therapy if they appear unwilling. You can also consult the best couples therapist on how to approach your partner and get them on board.
Why is Going to Couples Therapy an Issue?
Usually, when it comes to a problematic relationship, one party tries to revive the relationship by getting expert support. But the other person is refusing to attend. Sometimes, this refusal may not be because they want a divorce. Instead, it may be because they have a wrong understanding of couples therapy. For instance, they may fear showcasing their flaws and then appearing vulnerable. In fact, some may feel that the therapists and their partners may conspire against them to mistreat them or ditch them after discovering their pasts and weaknesses.
Plan and Establish the Discussion
The first step to getting anything done is simply to start. But it is necessary to start from the planning stage. For example, to get your partner to join you in a couple’s therapy, get them in a good mood and establish a conversation with them. A study revealed that happy people are very likely to be kind to others, and in a good mood, they are likely to be more receptive to your ideas. Consider their schedule, your choice of words, tone of voice, mood, body and facial expressions, and other factors that can make the conversation more amicable. For instance, you can consider conversation starter questions like:
“Honey, would you be willing to have a quick conversation with me?”
“Honey, I would love to discuss your desire for our marriage.”
Be mindful of your voice when making this conversation. Speak gently and focus more on sharing your experiences. This will likely tune your partner to a listening mode and be undefensive. However, if they become resistant, consider writing them a loving letter and giving them time to process the message. Ensure that the letter is worded to invite a conversation with them. If you are anxious about saying the right or wrong thing, aim to keep your words brief and concise so as not to turn your partner off of the idea of marriage counselling.
Build Emotional Connection
If you want to lead your partner on by motivating them to develop a self-interest in the therapy, then building an emotional connection with them is necessary. Statements like “We need serious help” can worsen a situation and lead to increased anger and unwillingness to mend things. Remember, you do not want to force them into joining you in the therapy, but rather, inspire them. Otherwise, the other party may withdrawal and even develop an attitude that undermines how effective the therapy could be.
Consider building an emotional connection with them by doing a fun activity like a card game together. You could also cook dinner with them or watch a comedy show together. This activity will make them appear important to you and more connected, open, and calm. But again, do this when you believe it will be very convenient for them.
Find the Gap
With the two of you now able to have a conversation together, take a moment to find the gap in your relationship. Ask questions that could get them to share their views of the relationship, such as:
“Honey, I am curious, if we have a great relationship, what would it feel like to you?”
“What do you think we should keep doing or stop doing to improve our relationship?”
“How can we do things differently?”
These types of questions will also help them to see how much you love and cherish them and wish to see your relationship evolve and grow.
Invite Them For a Couple’s Therapy
Now, it can be time to present couple’s therapy as a choice and openly invite them. But then, this depends on their response to your initial questions. Avoid making a demand. Instead, ask that they join you. And if they become silent, do not continue talking and repeating yourself.
Allow them to answer in their own time. If they say “Yes,” let them know you are committed to improving the relationship to help them get what they want out of the relationship. But if otherwise, do not feel disappointed. Thank them for being honest. You can still start therapy alone, and maybe in some time you can bring up the conversation again in the future.
Inspiring Your Partner in a Nutshell
Starting the couples therapy discussion can be quite intimidating, especially when you are unsure how they would respond. But it’s best not to be held down by fear. It is vital to make the right move to save your marriage, even if they eventually refuse to approve of therapy. These four tips to help inspire your partner to join couples therapy will likely lead to a positive response if you take your time and observe their non-verbal communication closely.