The idea behind couples therapy is to improve and/or save a struggling relationship. When someone calls a therapist, their goal is to help improve or fix a marriage that has been in disrepair, and to try to find ways to rebuild trust and start seeing each other in a loving, romantic light again.
Often in couples counseling we can find a way to make that happen. I have worked with numerous struggling couples in Nassau County that are now seeing their love rekindled, and their commitment to each other strengthened.
But sadly, not every relationship was meant to succeed. There are situations when, even if the love is there, it is better for both of you to consider ending the relationship and moving forward with your lives.
The Decision to End the Relationship
The choice to end a relationship is an immensely personal one, and there isn’t always a right time or wrong time that is relevant to all couples. If there is any consistent abuse in the relationship, for example, it may be best to separate and move forward separately. But when there is no abuse, and the issues revolve around love and connection, it can be harder to determine when it may be time to end the relationship.
As long as both partners in the relationship are committed to trying to make the relationship succeed, it may not be time to end the relationship. There is still hope for improvement, and hope is a powerful emotion that can trigger lasting change.
Still, there are times when it’s clear the relationship is not progressing. What I view as time to leave is when one or both partners is experiencing the following:
- When you have clearly determined that your partner no longer complements you in a way that enhances your life.
- When you are clear that changes cannot be made by yourself or your partner such that you can meet each other’s needs in the future.
Essentially, it may be time to leave the relationship when you recognize the changes that need to be made, but you and/or your partner has tried and is unable to make these changes, and therefore you are not complementing each other in a way that makes your lives better.
Determining this isn’t always easy, especially since in the height of emotions it is easy to feel this way temporarily, only to feel it fade away once emotions have calmed down. But that is one of the issues we try to determine in couples counseling. Sometimes we are not looking to save struggling relationships. Sometimes, our goal is to simply help partners understand themselves, give it their best, and determine the next steps in an amicable and productive way.
For more information, please call me for couples counseling at (516) 732-0273.