Relationship counseling questions: You are already into a relationship that needs the intervention of a therapist or counselor, but you don’t know the actual questions you need to ask the counselor while he or she is invited. This is really a very important issue to take care of. This is because, if you can ask a counselor the appropriate questions before the process of the therapy commences, will give you an extra bonus to benefit the counseling.
I have prepared some questions to ask your marriage or relationship counselor in order to gain the best out of your sittings with him or her.
Here are the Relationship Counseling Questions before he/she begins the counseling
1. Have you ever worked with a couple before?
Experience they say is a teacher. If a therapist has once worked with a couple like yours before, it will be an added advantage for you since it will no longer be a new process to begin. What do I mean by not being a new process to begin? That’s, the therapist is already familiar with a family like yours, and therefore, the rapport between you will be easy. This should form part of the Relationship counseling questions you should ask your Counselor.
You get to understand each other better. Besides understanding each other, the therapy will be quicker and faster – more effective. For instance, if you and your spouse are addicted to a drug, or you battle with an anger problem, or an emotional problem that causes constant conflict in your marriage, then it is better you search for a therapist that is familiar with such issues. This move is very important since it will make the therapy easier. The counselor will be fully loaded with the principles to share with you concerning these problems. In some cases, the counselor may have the statistics of previous therapy similar to yours – you can request for them as part of the preparation to the questions you may be asked by the counselor.
2. What style of therapy is yours?
Yes, it is our right to know the type of therapy that will be used on us. It is not necessary that we have a deep knowledge of what we ask, but the truth is that, in one way or the other, we might have experienced some of our relative or neighbours being diagnosed in a specific way. It could be that we are not that happy with what we saw. Therefore, it is our right to inform the counselor or therapist about this, probably, there could be another way to go about treating us.
We have various types of therapies such as Emotional Focused Therapy—EFP, or Solution Focused Brief Therapy—SFBT. What if through this little knowledge, we realized our problem is not emotional but solution based? For this reason, it is important to handle this part of therapy as important as possible.
3. What type of Professional Mental Health Therapist are you?
This is another important aspect of your relationship counseling questions. You need to know the type of counselor invited to handle your case. Is he the specialist really needed for your kind of issue? It is important. Every counselor is specialized in a specific counseling program. For instance, we have Social Workers; their job is different from a Psychologist whose job is to handle mental issues. We have marriage therapists for this reason, if your problem is based on the marriage issue, you can’t invite a psychiatrist before a marriage counselor. This will only come up when the need arises. This is a guide, well studied and it is expected of you to take into consideration.
4. Will you attend to my problem based on insurance?
This is a very important part of your relationship counseling questions because hiring a therapist could be costly; therefore, you need to ensure that the counselor invited is ready to carry out the service based on insurance depending on how financially buoyant you are. Mostly, the therapists start their service with insurance based medium, but they don’t advertise it. This is the reason why it is essential to ask this question. If fortunately, you find a therapist that is ready to treat your case based on insurance, then the next step you take is to call your insurer to know if you are good to go for specific mental health treatment. It is also advisable to first call your insurer to know if there is any therapist available to handle the kind of therapy you demand.
5. What should we expect from you?
The truth is that everyone has his or her expectation at the end of therapy. As couples, you also have what you expect in heart. It is not bad, if you ask your counselor to compare what he or she will arrive at the end of the therapy. You may ask if he or she has the tool to enhance communication between both of you.
This will give you the chance to explain more in details to what the counselor should look at while suggesting any principle for you to apply probably as married couples. If your person is the one oppressed with a mental illness, you can also ask this kind of question in order to know what the best therapy he or she needs is.
6. Ask your therapist how they can help you improve in your relationship
This question ordinarily shouldn’t have come in the first place, since the work of the counselor is to build a medium through which your relationship will be better. However, it is still advisable to ask this question as it further opens a medium through which the counselor will brainstorm upon how to give you the best of treatments he can. This question will give your therapist the impression that you are really serious about the issue at hand. This will motivate him or her to treat your case special.
7. How can I help us to have a good rapport for a better result
A therapist should be a leader rather than just someone that suggests. A therapist should be able to help a client explain him or she better so that his job will be effective and at the end will benefit both of them. For instance, you can guide your clients on what part of the questions thrown to them they should be most sincere about – though, it will be beneficial to them if they are sincere about every answer was given to you as their counselor. The truth is that most couples don’t give the actual answer as it is in their heart to the therapists, and by so doing, will not in any way help them. You are cheating on your own self.
8. Ask your therapist questions in relation to what you need
Remember, therapist or counselors are not mind readers. They can’t know what you really need until you let them know. Let say for instance, you have a specific psychological problem, which you suffer from and feel it will be difficult for anyone to help you about. Don’t hesitate to push the question to your counselor. Ask if they can help you in any way. There is a possibility that the solution to your problem lies within the reach of the therapist.
9. Be specific in your questions; don’t question the field as a whole
It will sound embarrassing questioning the entire field of therapy from a therapist. Be precise, and ask a question that will help the counselor help you solve your problems easier. Remember, a therapist is not guaranteed to help solve your problem; his job is to make some useful and professionally guided suggestions. If your case is pertaining to mental illness, there may be some drug prescriptions if necessary and that is normally done by a psychiatrist.
Relationship counseling questions: How to Begin Conversation with your Counselor
Let’s look at how to start a conversation with a counselor. It will make a lot of senses including it in this article. Take note of one thing, it is one thing to ask a question and another thing that know how to begin the conversation that will lead to asking a question. This is why it is essential to treat it here.
1. Find the Right Counselor
The first assignment you need to pass is to find the right therapist for your problem. Are you in need of a marriage therapist or a mental illness focused therapist? This is a question that should be answered. If well answered will determine the kind of conversation to start with a therapist. You know, a human is expected to do something with a good reason. What is your reason for inviting the counselor? You can start the conversation from this angle in order to see what he or she will say concerning the solution.
Apart from considering the solution for a problem, starting a conversation with a counselor will lead both of you into understanding the sole purpose of the therapy. You may let him know how serious you are about inviting him. You need to let him understand how important you want him to see your case so that he will be more careful handling it.
2. Start a journal with your Counselor
Set aside a time to write down your thoughts and feelings before starting a conversation with your counselor. You can go through lots of practices to ensure you are good to go. Remember, professionals work with time, so, as an adult, they expect that you are well prepared to start a conversation with them. Jot down the relevant point to give while you talk to your therapist so that it will be brief and easily understandable. This will help the counselor figure out the best way to handle your case. What about telling your therapist to see if he can help you on how to become a better husband or wife? His or her reply will be that you shouldn’t worry, they will try their best. However, do you know what that means? You have challenged your therapist indirectly that you need a very professional job, rather than mere suggestions.
3. Don’t shy away
I know most of the time, it is difficult to open up to others secret that lies between us and God—especially as a believer. However, in some cases, if you allow some secret remain, it will hinder our progress concerning mental or relationship health. Starting a good conversation with your therapy by telling them exactly what you feel and how it is will help such relationship therapy work fine. In the end, both parties i.e. the counselor and the client will benefit.
4. If Sex is your problem in Marriage, start with it
Your therapist may ask: “What is your problem?” give him or her straight forward answer ‘sex!’ If you can do this, will help the therapist figure out the best approach for your problem. However, many couples don’t know how to start a conversation with their counselor, and as such makes it more difficult for the therapist to understand them. There is no issue of shyness in dealing with therapy. You must be outspoken and open-minded.
5. Treat your counselor as a confidante
Do not forget that he or she has signed the law that your confidentiality be protected. Therefore, starting a conversation with them should not scare you. Your therapist must serve you right; therefore, there is a need for a brief communication between both of you before the main service. For example, you may ask if he has the tool to improve communication skill between you and your spouse. Or sometimes, some individual should ask if the therapist can diagnose – in the case of mental illness.
6. You can start the conversation by asking the therapist about the process
What process? The process to go through during the therapy can be explained to you so that you will be fully prepared for the therapist. It is like you have the training on how to ride a motorcycle, definitely, before you begin to move, there is a need for you to know where the brake lays, the gear, frame, wheels and many other parts in order to avoid an accident. Same applies here. Your therapist should be able to give you an overview of the entire process, so you will be able to determine either to continue with the process or stop it.