by Stephanie Chambers
Virtual marriage counseling is when you and your partner consult with a therapist using phone or video. It is also known as “online marriage counseling” or “tele marriage counseling.”
What are the advantages of virtual marriage counseling?
It can sometimes be difficult to schedule a face to face marriage counseling session that is easy for both of you to attend. With virtual marriage counseling it can be a little easier. For example, your partner may not be able to make it as he finishes work at a different time. But she might be able to attend if she connects via video on her phone from her car before she drives home.
Or you may both be in the same room, but you are able to connect with therapist virtually. This may be better, for example, if you need to talk to the counselor after you have put your child to bed.
Sometimes tensions can be less when you are not both in the same room at the same time. This may lead to more considered and less emotional responses to questions. When this happens, it can be easier to find solutions to issues within your household. Otherwise a yelling match just wastes everyone’s time.
What are the disadvantages of virtual marriage counseling?
You can’t give your partner a hug or squeeze their hand if it is a remote therapy session. So if your partner works through something major, you can’t give them this physical sign of your love and support.
When is it better to be face to face?
Some people prefer to have their first session with a counselor be face to face. Then the therapist will have a good chance to get to know you both. But once your therapist has worked out a plan of approach, sometimes virtual marriage counseling can be effective.
When you are discussing topics such as intimacy, it is also better to be in the same room. Although sometimes people find they are able to open up more freely during a phone conversation about such a deeply personal topic. It all depends on the person.
If you would like to discuss what would be better for your situation, please contact Dr. Scott Terry.