What to Look for in a Couples Therapist
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Did you know that people who participate in couples therapy will develop a deeper grasp of the dynamics of their relationships, will have a safe space with their partners, and will begin to understand one another’s perspectives?

If you realize that you and your significant other are having the same relationship problems and you don’t know what to do to move past them, you should talk to your partner about seeing a couples therapist.

But it can be challenging to know how to choose the best counselor if you have never visited one before. To help make things easier for you, we have written a guide. Keep reading if you are interested in finding out more.

Make Sure That the Therapist Has the Right Training

Licensed marriage and family therapists (LMFTs) will need to have a doctoral or master’s degree in family and marriage therapy. They will also need to have a minimum of two years of clinical experience.

But keep in mind that every state has its own credentialing requirements for those who want to obtain licenses in marriage and family therapy.

If you want to find out more about your area’s regulations, consider checking out the website of your state’s licensing board.

Find Out About Couples Therapists in Your Area

There are several places where you can start looking for a couples therapist.

Start by reaching out to or visiting the website of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT). This is the professional organization where therapists do couples work.

When you visit the organizations, you can use the “therapist locator” tab to start looking for qualified therapists.

You can also reach out to your insurance company and request their list of preferred providers.

If you live close to a university, you can also reach out to one of these institutions’ psychology departments to find out if there is low-cost couples therapy available through one of their programs.

It is common for graduate students to offer therapy sessions under the guidance of skilled instructors. You will need to make sure that their training is specifically geared toward working with couples.

You can also find out if there is a community mental health clinic in your area. If so, chances are that the intake department will have information about the credentials of therapists who are on staff.

Lastly, don’t forget to ask your family, friends, and coworkers for recommendations and suggestions. They might be able to suggest somebody who is skilled at relationship counseling.

Choose Somebody Who Fits

It is never a good idea to choose a couples therapist based on their availabilities and pricing. Instead, you should be looking for somebody who is the right fit for you and your partner.

You will need to make sure that your couples therapist is ready to prioritize helping you and your partner to overcome your communication problems.

In order to work with a therapist who is the right fit, you might need to make personal sacrifices. For example, you might need to leave work early so that you can visit your preferred therapist when they have openings.

Look for a Couples Therapist Who Is Flexible

Some couples therapists will charge their clients every single week, regardless of whether or not their clients show up.

If you cancel an appointment well in advance, your therapist should not be charging you.

If they do try to bill you, this might be a sign that your therapist is more interested in making money than in helping you to get better.

You will also want to find a therapist who is flexible about how often you will meet. How often you meet should depend on the needs of you and your partner.

Choose a Therapist Who Is Comfortable Talking About Sensitive Issues

Even though it can sometimes be difficult to talk about sensitive issues such as sex and finances, it is important to explore these topics with your couples therapist.

Therefore, make sure that your therapist encourages you to talk about these sorts of things.

Money isn’t always an issue for those who visit couples therapists. But money does often affect the quality of people’s relationships.

Your couples therapist should also understand the importance of talking about your sex life. This does not just include sex itself. You should also hold conversations about touch and chemistry.

Keep in mind that your therapist might not want to talk about these things during your first meeting. They might want to wait until you have the chance to build trust together.

Choose Somebody Who Deeply Listens

Your therapist should not take sides. If you don’t feel that you’ve been listened to or have been heard after a session, you might not be working with the right couples’ therapist.

You will want to make sure that your therapist is dedicated to helping you and your partner to live healthier and happier lives.

If their only goal is to keep your marriage together or if they seem stuck on the idea that divorce is your only choice, you should consider finding another therapist to work with.

Find the Right Couples Therapist Today

If you thinking about hiring a couples therapist, it is important to know what to look for. Make sure that you choose to work with somebody who is highly trained and who deeply cares about you and your partner.

Are you ready to hire a couple’s therapist? If so, we are here to help you. Don’t hesitate to contact us once you are ready to get started.

About the Author

Steve Cuffari

Steve Cuffari

For over 20 years, Steve Cuffari has been an ordained minister, assistant college professor of psychology at vanguard university, and a therapist committed to helping individuals, couples, and educators learn how to put an end to destructive conversations so they can build secure and lasting relationships... More about Steve →


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