How to Get Your Spouse to Go to Marriage Counseling

by Ciele Edwards

Not all troubled marriages can be saved, but many can. By seeking marriage counseling, you and your spouse can identify the source of your issues with the aid of an impartial third party. The marriage counselor can teach you how to better communicate with one another and build a more solid relationship. In some cases, however, one spouse discovers that the other is opposed to the idea of marriage counseling. Should this happen to you, you can try to work around your spouse's opposition and convince your spouse to seek help along with you.

Find out exactly what your spouse's opposition to marriage counseling is. Perhaps your spouse feels like marriage counseling would be a strain on your finances or maybe he is not comfortable exposing personal issues to a stranger. Once you know why your spouse does not want to go to marriage counseling, you can find a better angle to make your case for why counseling is beneficial.

Reassure your spouse that you have no intentions of using marriage counseling as a way to attack her or push her in a certain direction. Explain that counseling is meant to be beneficial to both parties, not used to change the behavior patterns of only one spouse.

Suggest seeking counseling for the benefit of your children, if you have any. No matter how much effort you and your spouse have tried to hide your marital issues from your children, your children are still likely to feel the brunt of your problems. Explain to your spouse that by improving your marriage, you can improve the conditions within your home and ensure the emotional security of your children.

Write your spouse a letter detailing your concerns and your reasons for wanting to seek counseling for your marriage. By making your arguments for counseling in writing, you can force your spouse to consider them without giving him the opportunity to interrupt you and verbally refute your reasoning. Communicating through text forces individuals to carefully consider the other person's arguments.

Bring up the consequences of divorce. A divorce can devastate your financial stability and have a negative effect on your children. Explain that marriage counseling can help prevent divorce. If your spouse truly fears the aftereffects of an unpleasant divorce, she will be more likely to work with you and seek help from a counselor.

See a marriage counselor on your own first and begin putting the practices recommended by your counselor into action. Once your spouse sees how beneficial counseling has been for you, he may rethink his decision not to go.


  • Make sure to select only a counselor who is licensed through the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists

About the Author

Ciele Edwards holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and has been a consumer advocate and credit specialist for more than 10 years. She currently works in the real-estate industry as a consumer credit and debt specialist. Edwards has experience working with collections, liens, judgments, bankruptcies, loans and credit law.

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