What to Expect as a Leaning Out Spouse in Discernment Counseling

Navigating Troubled Marriages: A Guide to Discernment Counseling

In the intricate web of marriage, moments of turbulence often arise, where the once sturdy bond between partners feels strained and uncertain. Amidst the tumultuous waters of troubled marriages, discernment counseling emerges as a beacon of hope, offering couples a lifeline to navigate the complexities of their relationship with clarity and compassion.

Founded by Elizabeth Doherty Thomas and Bill Doherty, the Doherty Relationship Institute specializes in providing discernment counseling 

tailored to couples grappling with the challenges of troubled marriages. Through a recent video, the co-founders shed light on the transformative journey individuals can embark on through discernment counseling, offering insights into its unique approach to addressing marital discord.

Troubled Marriages Are Not Alone

Discernment counseling serves as a sanctuary for couples to delve into the depths of their troubled marriages without fear or judgment. Unlike traditional marriage counseling, which may focus on salvaging the relationship, discernment counseling prioritizes understanding the root causes of marital strife while providing a safe space for individuals to express their emotions and concerns openly.

A Path for Troubled Marriages

Central to discernment counseling is the exploration of three distinct paths:

  • Maintaining the status quo
  • Pursuing separation or divorce
  • Committing to a structured period of working on the relationship

Through guided sessions, couples are encouraged to confront their contributions to the challenges within their marriage and envision potential paths forward with honesty and introspection.

Individuals in Troubled Marriages

A hallmark of discernment counseling is its emphasis on individual sessions with the counselor, allowing each partner to voice their thoughts and feelings without inhibition. This personalized approach fosters deeper self-awareness and mutual understanding, laying the foundation for meaningful dialogue and informed decision-making.

No matter what you’re feeling (sadness, anger, confusion), there is power in talking to a professional in a structure that allows you to be honest without your spouse present, but that allows the therapist to hear from and learn from your spouse directly. The Discernment Counseling approach gives the therapist a deeper perspective on what may be going on to better help you decide about the future of your marriage.

Discernment Counseling for Troubled Marriages

Crucially, discernment counseling offers couples a pause in the tumult of troubled marriages, providing an opportunity for reflection and introspection before making any irreversible decisions. With the guidance of trained professionals, couples can navigate this critical juncture with empathy, insight, and intentionality, paving the way for healing and transformation.

As Elizabeth and Bill emphasize, the decision to pursue discernment counseling is deeply personal, but it can offer troubled marriages a pathway toward reconciliation or resolution. Whether couples ultimately choose to reconcile or part ways, the journey of discernment counseling equips them with the tools and insights to navigate their troubled marriages with grace and resilience.

In conclusion, discernment counseling is a guiding light for couples navigating the stormy seas of troubled marriages, offering a pathway toward understanding, healing, and renewal. By embracing this journey of self-discovery and mutual exploration, couples can emerge stronger and more resilient, ready to embark on a new chapter in their relationship.