Many couples seek out pre-marital counseling with the hopes of resolving issues before they get married. It's a preemptive strike against divorce, but it only works for couples who love and respect each other. On the flip side, there is post-marital counseling, something most people have never heard of, and many will never engage in. However, it may be worthwhile for you and your ex-spouse to try it, and there are some good reasons why.
You Have Multiple Disagreements Over the Children and Sometimes in Front of Them
If the divorce was mutually-agreed upon, but the post-divorce battles are just as bad as the pre-divorce battles, you may both need some counseling to get past these issues. It sometimes helps to have group therapy as a family, and other times, when you know you need to bicker and fight without the children in the room, it is a healthier option to do so in the presence of a counselor/therapist. Then you can get all of your venom out, have the therapist talk both of you through it, and come to some reasonable resolution. It happens out of earshot of the children, and you both walk away a little less burdened and angry.
If You or Your Spouse Have Undiagnosed Mental Health Issues, the Therapist Will Spot Them
It may surprise you to learn that many people have extreme mental health issues that have never been diagnosed. Your marital troubles may be a result of this very problem. Either you or your spouse (or both!) could have some mental health problems that would become very apparent in post-marital counseling, and the therapist would spot it as you have your heated sessions. Then the therapist could make some suggestions about who should see what specialist for testing so that a proper diagnosis can be made to help the whole family understand these issues better.
Your Children Need to See Both Parents Trying to Work Things Out
Children learn by example, and they learn the good with the bad. If all they see is hostility, threats, fighting and post-divorce skirmishes and courtroom battles, they will not learn how to behave as adults. You and your whole family may need some special, post-divorce group therapy so that you can work out your frustrations with each other and so your kids can see that adults DO work things out. Then your kids will learn to problem-solve, compromise and find solutions to their anxieties, problems and fears.
For more information and advice, talk to a family therapist like Teri Role-Warren.
When I first started understanding my anxiety, I realized that I wasn't capable of taking care of the issue on my own. Instead of trying to quietly navigate my condition, I decided to start working towards understanding the counseling process. I focused on finding the right counselor, and then I worked hard in therapy day in and day out. This blog is all about understanding how counseling can help, because I know how much it helped me. You never know, by talking with the right person and tackling your issues head-on, you might be able to enjoy a more fulfilling life.