Whether for deep rooted personal issues or to save a marriage, many people at some point in their lives find that they need counselling services. Finding a counsellor who is convenient to one’s home, school or office is almost as important as assuring they are good at what they do, simply because counselling requires a number of sessions to effective. Picking a counsellor is a very personal thing too, so interviewing a number of counsellors before settling on one is important. Finding local counselling services really boils down to a couple factors:
Get referrals from various sources
While it may be difficult, asking trusted friends and family members is the best way to find a quality counsellor. If they have had to go down the counselling road themselves, they will be able to easily tell you the good and bad of counsellors they have used. For example, even if marriage counselling is not successful, the person involved will know whether the counsellor is good or not based on the experience. Another place to seek a referral is from your physician. They will have experience with other patients who have sought counselling services as well as most likely knowing some personally, whether through their practice or through networking that the counsellor has done. Finally, looking through web sites and directories of local counsellors can help at least build up a list of potential therapists and some sites even have ratings for them.
Free Marriage Counseling - Peter Gitundu
A young couple relocates to a new area. They are hundreds of miles away from family and friends. The husband works full time and the wife is a stay at home mom. They have been in their new area about 1 year. The wife is becoming bored, lonely and depressed as she does not have any friends or significant social life. Her husband talks alot about work when he comes home. He then spends an inordinate amount of time talking on the phone with his work colleagues and friends that he has made. He goes out frequently without his wife often staying out throught the wee hours of the morning. Is this a case where marriage counseling is needed?
A gut reaction would be to answer this question as yes, absolutely. There are some serious and significant issues developing in this relationship. A professional counselor should be able to identify the root of the problems that both individuals in this relationship are not seeing or have ignored. Once these problems have been diagnosed then the counselor can establish a workable plan that will allow this couple to resolve these major issues.
In looking a little deeper at this situation marriage counseling may not be needed right away. Why would I say that? Well, we don'tknow if this couple has ever even discussed this situation or the problems that the wife is perceiving. Hard to imagine but the husband may not even be aware that there is a problem. If the wife never speaks up to express her feelings he may think everything is fine, so why change. The first thing that needs to occur here is the wife needs to communicate to her husband how she feels and make him aware of these issues. I know, it's hard to believe that he doesn't see it but some people are just that oblivious or just don't care OR she is putting up a good front and doesn't show that anything is wrong.
Another deeper issue in this situation is why doesn't this wife have any friends or why isn't she developing a social network of her own? Has she made any attempt or effort to meet people and make friends? If she is a stay at home mom with young kids then certainly there are play groups, play dates, support groups, child activity centers, and community events centered around children that she could become involved in in order to meet other like moms that may be in her situation. Yes, the husband has issues in this relationship but the wife is relying solely on him for support. She needs to make an effort to take care of herself.
Is marriage counseling needed in this case. I think there are several things this couple can do between themselves prior to iniating the help of a professional counselor. If they are unable or unwilling to resolve their issues then I would recommend the help of a professional.
Marriage Counseling – Develop The Understanding
The primary difference between secular counseling and Christian counseling is the authority of which the counselor is held accountable. Secular counselors are licensed by the state in which they practice and must strictly adhere to the rules that the state has in place. These counselors may not pray with their patients or discuss religion at all unless it is requested or initiated by the patient. They may not provide counsel against things including abortion and homosexuality.
In contrast, Christian counselors will answer to the church. They are required to ask for God's help, offer religious solutions to their patients and pray with them. This creates a sense of responsibility by the church to over the activities that these counselors engage in. These are the most distinct differences between the two types of counselors.
Secular counselors will normally have a master's degree. Many of them will hold a PhD too. A religious counselor will have a degree from a university that specializes in religion while a secular counselor will receive training from one of the state certified schools.
Secular or non-religious counseling is dyadic in nature. It is based solely on the relationship between the counselor and his or her patient. While it is effective in addressing both emotional and mental issues, it does not consider spiritual matters. Christian counseling is triadic in that it not only is about the relationship between the therapist and patient but also involves the patient's spirituality. For this reason, Christian counseling is unique.
These therapists not only work to provide guidance in resolving personal and emotional challenges, but also are trained specifically to the patient see themselves as God sees them and help them to learn to accept themselves how they are. They must be able to help their patients to live and exhibit behavior that is in line with what is written in the bible.
Secular counseling involves many different designations including L. P. C. (licensed professional counselor,) L. M. F. T. (licensed marriage and family therapist) and L. M. H. C. (licensed mental health counselor.) The same can be said for Christian counseling who also feature a variety of designations. Some of them include L. P. C. (licensed pastoral counselors,) L. C. P. C. (licensed clinical pastoral counselors) and C. C. C. (certified Christian counselors) to mention just a few.
When seeking counseling from a Christian counselor, ensure that he or she was trained and licensed by either a church or other similar organization that will hold them accountable for their actions. Two of the most renowned associations include the National Christian Counselors Association and the Board of Christian Counselors.
What really matters when selecting a counselor is that you find one that is truly motivated to help you. Do not be afraid to request a telephone conference first to find out more about the beliefs that your therapist has to ensure that you both share the same religious viewpoints and morals. Taking this time in the beginning can save a lot of time and trouble in your search for the right therapist.