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TherapistJen, LCSW, CPC
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 3433
Experience:  Licensed Clinical Social Worker
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should a couple living in domestic abuse get couples counc

Resolved Question:

should a couple living in domestic abuse get couples counciling?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  TherapistJen replied 5 years ago.
It is always a good idea to get professional help. Domestic abuse has far reaching effects especially if there are children involved. safety first always. Professional support of any kind is necessary to create a safe environment. If the other individual won't go, then you need to get the support you need to get though this and make decisions to create a safe environment.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

I am sorry. My question was not clear enough. Should couples go together, or in domestic abuse cases is it best to have seporate counciling until the abuse has terminated?

Expert:  TherapistJen replied 5 years ago.
I am sorry that I misunderstood. Thank your for clarifying. I believe it is a great idea for both to exist. Both individuals need the support in their own counseling situation and the abuser needs to work on their individual issues to be able to stop this behavior. Couples counseling can help because the relationship is suffering due to the abuse. So, although I know it can be a lot and expensive...I think everyone can benefit from their own individual counseling and then get into counseling together and I would rely on the individual therpaists to recommend when the right time to start the couples counseling.
Does that make sense?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Yes, i understand your answer however I don't agree. How can there be couples counseling until the abusive spouse first gets their problem dealt with.


The abuser must work on accepting that the things he does are never acceptable under any circumstances. Often these men will blame their behaviors on others or their environment.


Furthermore the danger that would exist as the abused spouse might have retaliation for her thoughts, feeling or potentially exposing the truth in a light that "makes him look" like the bad guy.


I was meeting with a Family Pastor today in Red Deer Alberta trying to alter their program for Marriages because my wife and I have survived an abusive marriage and saw disastrous potential in couples like us getting help together.


Red Deer Alberta has the highest rate of Family Violence in Canada and my wife and I have begun a ministry focused on Outreach to Men who abuse in the hopes they will get help before it goes any further.




Expert:  TherapistJen replied 5 years ago.
I see your point for sure and what I mentioned above was that both spouses get into counseling and to take the lead from the therapist as to when the right time to get couples counseling.
The reason I like couples counseling at some point is because of exactly what you are saying...that the abuser blames others for the abuse and couples counseling can be a great way to bring that behavior out and for it to be looked at in a safe environment rather than in the abusive one. The possibility for retaliation does exist and it exists even if the man has to look at his own behavior while not in couples counseling.
I love what you are doing and think it will be a wonderful success and I truly hope so. You will be touching the lives of many.
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