Do It Yourself Marriage Counseling 
by Angie Lewis  
Heaven Ministries

 

Do it yourself marriage counseling is exceptional counsel because it really works! You just need to learn how to work it. Let me ask you a question. What are you now basing your marriage on? Where are you going now for the answers you may need to resolve your marital upheavals? The answer is most likely friends, family, pastors, books and articles, or for very few of you, mainstream marriage counseling. Am I right?

What happens when couples go to marriage counseling? They rant and rave to a stranger sitting behind a desk about how awful the person they married is. They then go on to tell this stranger about their personal and very intimate issues. Afterwards the counselor sizes the couple up, and judges them by what he or she has just learned about their marriage, and this in turn will form the basis of how the counselor will advise them.

Mainstream counseling comes from the viewpoints of society. The culture is full of people who are keen to form opinions of others by the way they look, dress, and by how much money they make, by gender, and job, beliefs, feelings, choices, and so on.  How fair, do you think would it be to accept this kind of handling, and advice for your marriage? Several things can and will go wrong when we accept this sort of knowledge for our marriage. Discernment is the key here.

How much do you value your marriage?  How much do you value who you are, and the person you married? This is how we decide how much we value the guidance and advice we may get for our marriage. I certainly do realize that couples need a supportive ear to vent their marital frustrations to, and there is nothing wrong with that. But if couples knew the great difference it would make if they shifted their accepted wisdom over from mainstream counsel to biblical wisdom, they would see what exceptional marriages they really could have.

We want our marriage fixed and we're so desperate to get it fixed that we run to strangers, friends and family that give us bias advice, all in the hopes of fixing our marriage.  But that's the problem. As you know, you cannot change your spouse; so then, if that's the case, how can a stranger change your spouse? They most certainly can't. Your spouse has to want to change for himself. And that happens when he begins to appreciate the marriage with more importance in his value structure.

The counselor says to the husband, "Go home and start validating your wife more, quit looking at porn, and stop being such a lazybones all the time, give your wife more money, and have more foreplay before having intercourse. Come back next week, give me another $50 an hour and I'll tell you some more stuff you can do to make your marriage happy and fulfilled."

The counselor says to the wife, "Go home and start respecting your husband more, don't expect him to be as neat and tidy as you, give him more sex and he'll stop looking at porn, stop spending so much money, trust your husband and quit worrying about him being out with his buddies. Stop being so bossy too. Come back next week with your husband and I'll tell you more stuff you can do to make your marriage happy and fulfilled."

But you already know all this stuff! So what’s the problem? Why aren't you happy and fulfilled? Because you're not taking care of you, that's why. You're looking "at" your spouse to fulfill you and bring happiness into the marriage instead of looking "in" and seeing what the real problem is! Without fixing ourselves first it won't matter who we're married to!

It's true; we need to fix ourselves first before we can fix anything with the marriage.  We cannot tell our spouse how awful they are. That is looking "at" them as the problem. In self marriage counseling you look at yourself before you find fault in your spouse. In other words, self marriage counseling is done by shifting the focus off of your spouse and onto yourself. The minute you stop focusing on your spouse, you will instantly feel better about your marriage.

Do it yourself marriage counseling is not for everyone, though. It is for couples who base their marriage upon the foundations of Jesus Christ.  Spiritual based marital counseling works best when both couples decide to do it together! I firmly believe with the right spiritual support couples can make a difference in the way they think and feel about their marriage and who they are married to.

Copyright © 2006 Angie Lewis ~ Heaven Ministries
These articles may be reprinted in full by citing the author and copyright, thanks!

 
 

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