Most discernment counseling participants are in a relationship that is broken. While marriage counseling assumes that both partners are committed to working on the marriage, discernment counseling does not. Rather, discernment counseling helps partners determine if they want to work on their marriage or if they want to proceed towards divorce. Preferably working with both parties, the therapist works to truly understand both sides of the partnership so clear options can be presented for the couple’s next steps…either towards reconciliation or towards separation/divorce.
Discernment Counseling is for couples when:
- One partner wants a divorce but the other party wants to work on the marriage
- Couples moving towards divorce who want to manage issues of regret
- Non-Married intimate relationships considering separation
- Business partnerships on the brink of dissolution
- One or both partners want to give the relationship one last look before abandoning the life they’ve built together
Discernment counseling is NOT for:
- Those living with the danger or threat of domestic violence
- One partner is coercing the other to participate
- Those unwilling to be open to the idea of staying together
What to expect:
Discernment counseling typically goes no longer than five total sessions of 90-120 minutes each. The therapist uses the sessions to meet with the clients together briefly, then separately, then jointly at the end of the session. The couple will decide with the therapist at the end of each session whether to meet again.
The end result will be a decision of: should the couple be strengthened back to health with marital counseling, should they proceed with separation/divorce, or should the couple set aside some time with healthy boundaries to reevaluate the decision later. Your therapist respects where you are coming from but will also gently open the door towards reconciliation if it is at all possible. You will gain confidence and clarity for next steps going forward, whether it be towards an amicable divorce/separation, to take a time out and reevaluate at a later time, or to form a reconciliation plan for a healthy and happy life together.
Even if you have made the decision to divorce / separate, if you are willing to see if there is an angle you are not seeing… a path forward together, then Discernment Counseling IS for you!