#FindHelpFriday: How to Find a Couples Counselor

An important aspect of a lasting and loving relationship is knowing where to look if you feel like you could benefit from the support of a professional counselor. Professional couples counseling can be beneficial if you are facing challenges in your relationship, going through a period of transition, or if you want to work on strengthening your relationship and preparing for conflicts that may arise in the future.

Although counseling has become more accepted throughout recent years, it is still common to feel scared or embarrassed about seeing a counselor due to the stigma around seeking professional help. However, there is no need to feel embarrassed about taking this step. Reaching out for counseling takes a lot of courage and is something to be proud of!

Once you and your partner are ready to reach out for counseling, it can be hard to know where to go. How do you sort through the many options of counselors in our community? How do you know if a counselor is the right fit for you and your partner? Can we even afford counseling? These are all potential questions that may come up as you start looking for a counselor.

Here are a few steps you can take to identify potential counselors who may be a good fit for you:

First, ask for recommendations!

One of the best ways to find a counselor is by asking the people you know and trust who they recommend. If you don’t have any personal contacts with counselors, consider professionals you know who might be able to offer a good recommendation, such as your doctor, your child’s pediatrician, a faith community leader, or a teacher or counselor at your child’s school.

Second, if you’re unable to get any personal or professional recommendations, then you can search one or more of the online directories of counselors.

Some of the main directories that are available include:

  1. The American Association of Marriage and Family Therapy (http://www.aamft.org/iMIS15/AAMFT/Content/Directories/Find_a_Therapist.asp)
  2. Psychology Today (https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/therapists)
  3. Counselor Find (http://www.nbcc.org/Search/CounselorFind).

These directories usually allow you to search for a counselor by location, payment options, and areas of expertise.

Many counselors also have websites for their practice or agency, so once you and your partner have identified some good prospects, take some time to search their online profiles to get a better sense of whether or not they are a good fit.

Third, consider if a potential counselor is a good fit for both you and your partner.

You’ll help set the stage for a successful counseling experience if you can locate a counselor who meets as many preferences as possible for both you and your partner.

Fourth, once you’ve identified one or more good possible fits, reach out to speak with the counselor.

Many counselors offer prospective clients a chance to talk by phone – and sometimes in person – to get to know them before making a decision about whether to enter into a professional counseling relationship with them. If you have a chance to do this, some possible questions you could ask are: (1) What kind of training have you received to work with couples?; (2) Can you describe your counseling approach to me?; (3) What experience do you have with the issue my partner and I are facing currently?; (4) What are your fees and payment options?; (5) How often will we come for counseling sessions, how long will sessions last, and do you have any limits or expectations about how long you’d work with a client?

Want to know more?

Check out one of our previous blog posts: “How to Find a Counselor to Help With Relationship and Family Challenges”

And, check out this great recap of our pointers on finding a couples counselor in this YouTube video:

Re-Create Your First Date!

Reliving the initial moments of falling in love is a fun and exciting way to reconnect with one another. One simple way to remember some of the excitement of the early days of your relationship is to recreate your first date. Go back to the spots where you went on the first date (or somewhere similar if you’ve moved away or those spots don’t exist anymore!).

While you’re there, talk about your memories of what you were thinking and feeling on that first date! Share what your early hopes were for the relationship–or you may even enjoy some laughs if one of you wasn’t totally convinced you were right for each other from the start. Here’s a great question to discuss while recreating your first date: If you could go back and tell yourself one thing you know now that you wish you knew then, what would it be?

Recreating a first date can be a fun and exciting way to remember how far you’ve come since the early days of your relationship–as well as help you remember some of the hopes and dreams that you’ve had for the future of your relationship!

Series Introduction: Keeping Love Alive In Lasting Relationships

It’s been said that falling in love is easy…staying in love is the hard part! As couple relationships go on over time, it can start to feel more difficult to keep the feelings of love and excitement alive. It’s easy to get caught up in daily life and fall into a routine that doesn’t prioritize your relationship. Whether it’s taking care of the kids, grocery shopping, or doing laundry, it can be easy to forget to make time for yourself and your partner to connect and build your relationship.

Here at HRI, we believe it’s important to help couples find ways to be proactive and intentional in their relationships as they grow and change over time. Over the next few days, we’ll be sharing tips to help increase and/or improve the intimate moments in your relationship. Stay connected to HRI in the days ahead to learn tips and strategies for keeping love alive in lasting relationships!

 

#FindHelpFriday: The Women’s Resource Center of Greensboro

Think of the Women’s Resource Center of Greensboro as the middleman (or middle woman) between you and the services you need. People often find themselves in need of guidance as they face life’s hurdles, and the WRC provides necessary support to women and their families by giving them a space to connect, heal, and learn. The WRC of Greensboro offers a vast array of services for the many problems women in our community face, be that returning to work, going through divorce, starting a business, or simply handling the stress of it all. From skill-building workshops to mental health counseling, WRC will help you find what you need to live your best life!

To learn more about the Women’s Resource Center of Greensboro, visit their website http://www.womenscentergso.org/ or call them at 336 275-6090. You can also find a great video to learn about their services here: http://www.womenscentergso.org/get-involved.html

Learning about the Recovery Process

An essential part of supporting a friend or family member in their recovery process is learning about addiction, the recovery process itself, and what your role in the recovery process should look like. Having this important information can help you understand how to best support your loved one and help them have a lasting recovery.

A few ways to become educated about addiction and the recovery process include:

  1. Asking professionals from the treatment center your friend/family member attended for information and advice.
  2. Participating in a family program, such as the ones offered by Fellowship Hall.
  3. Visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s website for information and educational resources about addiction and recovery.