Earlier this year, after nearly nine years of marriage, my husband and I decided to go to marriage counseling. Not only was the best decision we could have made for our relationship, I was surprised to realize the ways marriage counseling helped me as a mom, too. From simply releasing some of the tension that had been building in our home, to creating a better example for our children, marriage counseling turned out to be what our entire family needed.
I admit I've fallen victim to the predominant, and not to mention fictitious, school of thought that claims attending marriage counseling means you're failing as a couple. After attending myself, I realize that isn't even remotely the case. My husband and I never did any pre-marital counseling, and I've long thought that we could have benefited from a bit more of an instruction booklet when it cam to continually cultivating and sustaining a healthy and happy partnership. When we reached an impasse in deciding what our next step would be as a family — and after a very hard year with four failed adoptions — we hoped counseling would help us make our decision. We did five sessions of what's called "solution-based counseling," by an older couple who are lay counselors at our church. Happily, we got much more than just a simple solution to any relationship woes out of the deal.