by Dr. John Luton
You’ve probably landed on this page because your relationship
with your husband or wife is in trouble, and you’re considering
marriage counseling. If this describes what’s going on in
your life right now, stay with me for just a few minutes because
I believe I can help you.
You’re probably wondering how a total stranger could possibly
help you heal your broken relationship -- right? That’s
a good question and, fortunately, one that I can answer. Sometimes
it takes a helper who’s removed from the heat of battle
– someone who’s standing outside the fray –
to stir a little objective thinking.
I’d like to share some of the major benefits of marriage
counseling. You can use these benefits to promote healing in your
own relationship. Or, maybe you can share them with a friend who’s
considering marriage counseling.
What are the benefits of marriage counseling?
Let’s look at the first one: Marriage counseling -- a great
Marriage counseling provides an opportunity for a couple to demonstrate
their willingness to heal their relationship.
Sometimes it takes making an appointment with a marriage counselor
for both parties to understand the seriousness of their situation.
Often one person is more strongly motivated to seek assistance
than the other. And sometimes, only one individual will actually
keep the appointment. Whether marriage counseling starts with
one or two, the important thing is to get started. While it’s
certainly more effective to have both the husband and wife present
for marriage counseling, it’s possible for a helper to accomplish
a great deal with only one.
Here’s the second benefit: Marriage counseling -- increased
Marriage counseling helps a couple to understand the nature of
their problems, often from more than one perspective.
Often, when people are hurting in a relationship, they are so
intensely focused on their own pain that they might forget what
another may be going through as well. In marriage counseling,
couples are encouraged to look at their problems from each other’s
perspective. This often brings a better understanding of and appreciation
for the feelings of the other person in the relationship.
Also, depending on which counseling approach is used, much marriage
counseling time may be spent talking about each partner’s
family of origin and how family members have related to each other.
This technique can help counselees see possible connections between
past and present behavioral trends.
The third benefit is the most important of all: Marriage counseling
-- caring and sharing
Marriage counseling helps a couple exchange ineffective communication
strategies for more meaning ways of sharing with each other.
Marriage counseling often helps couples to understand how ineffective
communication styles have damaged their relationship. When husbands
and wives learn more meaningful ways of sharing with each other,
their relationships often show marked improvement. It’s
often amazing how relationships can be improved when couples learn
a few, easily implemented communication techniques.
Marriage Counseling ~ some final words of hope for hurting relationships
As a minister and pastoral counselor for more than 20 years, I’d
like to share with you one very important discovery I’ve
made while counseling with hundreds of couples. It’s so
important that I’m going to put it in bold letters too --
so you won’t miss it.
Couples who approach marriage counseling with a strong desire
to improve their communication often bring about healing in their
There is no magical quick-fix. Marriage counseling requires motivation,
hard work, and a willingness to allow the miracle of forgiveness
to heal broken hearts.
I wish you all the best in your endeavor to bring wholeness to
About the Author: Dr. John W. Luton
Before joining the mass communication faculty at Elizabeth City State University in North Carolina, Dr. Luton served as pastor of churches in Maryland and North Carolina for more than 20 years. He is a licensed clinical pastoral counselor with the National Christian Counselors Association and he holds the advanced certification.
Dr. Luton is also the primary author of Mastering Pastoral Counseling Utilizing Temperament, a Phase II course that is offered by the NCCA as part of its national licensure program for pastoral counselors. The course is used in many seminaries and counselor training centers throughout the nation.