Marriage is a beautiful life-changing event. I’m 100% sure that most people do not enter marriage, suspecting that they will get a divorce. However, according to the CDC, the divorce rate is increasing to about 7 million per year. In our country, we hear about divorce all the time, so much so that it is normalized. However, it is a fact getting a divorce is not an easy thing. It is the hardest time for both partners. But people who do not feel happy and satisfied with their relationship want to end it!

A lot of couples get divorced due to financial issues, physical problems, mental issues, and other problems. Moreover, many marriages may end due to serious problems such as abuse, domestic violence, and extra maternal affairs. But divorce or marital separation affects the whole family life. It can especially affect your children’s lives—and the way they deal with their own relationships as they grow up. For some couples, making the decision to divorce isn’t easy, and they remain confused about their marriage and ultimately stuck.

Couples therapy is for two people committed to saving their relationship. More than likely, doing traditional couples therapy won’t help you to figure things out. The alternative? Discernment counseling!

What is discernment counseling?

It is not a rare thing that couples end up on different pages. They disagree on many things. They have a different way of thinking. One partner may want to stay and is ready to attend these therapy sessions, while the other partner is not interested in staying and doesn’t want to attend these sessions. In this kind of situation, the couple is known as a mixed agenda couple. Discernment counseling is a short-term therapy for mixed agenda or ambivalent couples. They don’t know whether they want this relationship or want to end this and get divorced. This counseling helps the couple to reach a decision. Discernment counseling is a unique kind of counseling as it does not force the couple to stay but helps them reach their final decision. This therapy is very brief, no more than five sessions.

What is discernment counseling look like?

To start discernment counseling, you and your partner will have to set up a phone consultation with the therapist you choose. This is to make sure that everyone is on the same page and agrees to the first session. The first session of discernment counseling is a 2-hour session. The first 30 minutes will be with both partners. Then the counselor will talk to each of them separately and try to know the issues they are going through in this relationship. Lastly, the therapist will meet both together. At the end of the session, the therapist will give the couple three options: Stay together, Separate, or come back for another session. The maximum number of sessions is 5, however, at the end of each session, the couple will be asked if they want to continue.

Benefits of discernment counseling?

The major aim of discernment counseling is to help you end your confusion and reach a final decision. If both the partners are willing to save their marriage, then they will be encouraged to attend couples therapy or marriage counseling, at a 6-month commitment.

Following are the benefits of discernment counseling

  • Pondering what happened to the marriage that had caused you to reach this point of divorce.
  • Understanding what role your children can play in making any decision.
  • Knowing what has destroyed your understanding and bond
  • Understanding which things were the reason for staying together and why they have changed.
  • Recalling the best memories, you have together and appreciating them
  • Being able to make any decision at the end of discernment counseling

If you decide on separation. You will be confident about it and won’t regret in life about your decisions.

As is mentioned above, if you are thinking about a breakup or divorce but are confused, discernment counseling can help. You can contact our intake specialist for more information on the service.