Couples Therapy vs. Marriage Counseling: What Are the Differences?


Every year more than 2 million couples in America get married. But as all married couples will know, “I do” does not automatically lead to your happily ever after.

While you may have accepted one another “for better, for worse”, facing “the worse” can be challenging. Stress, strain, and emotional discord in a relationship are natural. In fact, 19% of couples admit to being unhappy in their marriage.

Finding a healthy way to cope with the things that life throws at you as a couple is the key to building a lasting relationship. This is where marriage counseling and couples therapy can help. 

So when it comes to couples therapy vs. marriage counseling, what’s the difference? Read on to find out more.

What Is Marriage Counseling? 

Marriage counseling focuses on building strong relationships, resolving conflict, and improving your communication.

Because of this, it is ideal for couples struggling with specific issues and events or facing a crossroads in their relationship. For example, some couples turn to marriage counseling: 

  • Before they get married 
  • When trying to make a big decision, such as relocating or becoming parents
  • After infidelity
  • If they are thinking about getting divorced

This can be great therapy for parents, as it gives you time and space to address specific issues that are impacting your home life.

What Is Couples Therapy? 

A couples therapy guide will also focus on strengthening your relationship and communication. However, this involves delving further into the history of your relationship and behavior. A couples therapist will help you understand what affects you both as a couple and individually.

This can help if you feel that you are no longer relating to your partner in a healthy way. Couples therapists can also help with issues involving substance abuse or compulsive behavior.

Most couples therapists will offer you couples sessions. However, you will also have the opportunity to work with your therapist on a one-to-one basis. This can be invaluable if you have individual issues that you feel are impacting your relationship and would like to address.

Couples Therapy vs. Marriage Counseling: Which Is the Right Choice For You? 

It is worth noting that both therapy and counseling can benefit your relationships in the long run. They both help you to improve your communication and conflict resolution skills. In fact, there is a lot of overlap in these practice areas.

So when it comes to choosing between couples therapy vs. marriage counseling it is a good idea to look at the things you want to address.

For couples focusing on a specific event, issue, or decision, marriage counseling is the way to go. This can provide support as your move through these events.

If you want to develop your understanding of one another and address previous behavior a couples therapist is the right choice. 

Get Support Today

If you are choosing between couples therapy vs. marriage counseling the best thing to do is look at what you hope to gain from the experience. That way you can reach out to counselors and therapists to find the right fit for your relationship.

Want more tips on building a supportive home environment? Then keep scrolling now for more great inspiration.

About Author

LaDonna Dennis

LaDonna Dennis is the founder and creator of Mom Blog Society. She wears many hats. She is a Homemaker*Blogger*Crafter*Reader*Pinner*Friend*Animal Lover* Former writer of Frost Illustrated and, Cancer...SURVIVOR! LaDonna is happily married to the love of her life, the mother of 3 grown children and "Grams" to 3 grandchildren. She adores animals and has four furbabies: Makia ( a German Shepherd, whose mission in life is to be her attached to her hip) and Hachie, (an OCD Alaskan Malamute, and Akia (An Alaskan Malamute) who is just sweet as can be. And Sassy, a four-month-old German Shepherd who has quickly stolen her heart and become the most precious fur baby of all times. Aside from the humans in her life, LaDonna's fur babies are her world.

0 0 votes
Article Rating
1 Comment
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
1 year ago

It is difficult to say whether this article will help those who are on the verge of a break. My personal experience (in my first marriage) has shown that a family therapist is not always helpful. There are different situations and you need to use the right solution. I became free after divorce and found a new wife on onenightfriend. This is a popular dating site in my city. Most likely my successful choice is a consequence of my life experience in my first marriage. I just knew where to look in this case.