Updated: Sep 10, 2020
Be honest, the day you decided you couldn’t live without your wife and you asked her to marry you, did you imagine your marriage would be where it is now? I’m talking emotionally, physically, spiritually, and yes, even sexually?
Be honest, is your marriage what you expected it to be? Is this the life you imagined on your wedding day?
Yes, I know you love your wife, but you may also be feeling dissatisfied, a little frustrated, and need I say, even tired of being married. Your wife thinks you’re the problem, and you think she’s the problem, and you’re each passing blame like a bad game of tag. Is this even remotely true for you?
Lord Byron, the British poet and politician, once wrote,
“It is easier to die for the woman you love than to live with her.”
He wrote that nearly 200 years ago.
Are you kidding me? Yet, many men feel the same way about their wives today and find themselves living lives of what I call, “marriage desperation.”
You know what I’m talking about. I’m talking about the man who finds himself asking…
“What happened to the woman I used to talk to on the phone for hours when we were dating, but I can’t seem to talk to for minutes without it leading to an argument?”
“What happened to us sharing our dreams about the things we wanted to do and places we wanted to go, and now we rarely do anything or go anywhere together (without the kids)?”
“What happened to the woman, who once couldn’t keep her hands off of me, but now she doesn’t even want to be touched, let alone have sex?”
“What happened to the excitement I used to feel about coming home and seeing her every day after work?
This man may be asking all the right questions, but he's coming up short on any acceptable answers. He's tried so hard to do everything right in order to have the marriage he always wanted, but he's driving home every day to a woman he loves but is struggling to like and live with.
When did marriage become so hard?
Most men already know that nearly 50 percent of marriages in the United States end in divorce (mostly each initiated by women leaving men devastated and hopeless with no support system to recover).
But did you know:
• 60 percent of second marriages end in divorce.
• 73 percent of third marriages end in divorce.
• In America, there is one divorce approximately every 36 seconds. That’s nearly 2,400 divorces per day, 16,800 divorces per week and 876,000 divorces a year.
• The average length of a marriage that ends in divorce is eight years.
And with men being 3x more likely to become alcohol, porn, and drug dependent – masking their problems rather than facing and solving them, you’d think men would reach out for help with their marriage. But the truth is, men are less likely to reach out for support than women.
Every man wants a happy marriage; but very few men know what they can do to fix a bad one. So, where do you start? What do you do?
Most “experts” would say, grab your wife and get couples counseling quickly. But according to statistics from Psychology Today, most people who go to marriage counseling end up getting divorced anyway. So, instead of living “happily ever after,” it’s more likely to end up, “too little too late.”
In hindsight, many men are now realizing that of all the ways to “fix” their marriage, marriage counseling is probably the least effective and most expensive. But most men think counseling is the only option available; but there is also the option of marriage coaching.
Most men don’t know about it, and very few counselors talk about it publicly, even though they secretly recommend it to clients who can’t afford their fees. And if you’re serious about saving your marriage, you might want to prayerfully consider marriage coaching as a first option before you consider counseling as your last.
Here are seven (7) compelling reasons why every husband needs a marriage coach, not a counselor.
But before we dive into those reasons, let me quickly explain the difference between counseling and coaching:
Simply stated, counselors are paid to listen (without giving advice) to you and help you look backwards at your challenges in order to see how you got to where you are. In your marriage relationship, counselors are there to help you with a short-term issue, and if they can’t help you, they’ll simply refer you to either a therapist (who will dig even deeper) or a psychiatrist (who will prescribe medication to manage your behavior). And each of those options are more expensive than the last.
On the other hand, in relationship coaching, a coach not only listens like a counselor does, he also challenges you like a trusted friend to help move you forward to where you want to go. He’s focused on helping you grow from your challenge. A coach understands where you’re coming from, because he’s felt the pain from his own marital struggles, and he’s successfully resolved those issues for himself and others without the use of drugs, taking years, or paying a fortune in health insurance. That’s why he became a marriage and life coach.
In a coaching session, a marriage coach listens deeply, speaks truthfully, and is more direct, and provides action plans to help you achieve a specific result, so you can move forward and grow. He won’t let you hide from your challenges; instead, he’ll help you face them head on and grow stronger as a result.
So, let’s dive into the 7 reasons why every husband needs a marriage coach, not a counselor:
Reason 1: Marriage counseling assumes you’re the problem in your marriage; a marriage coach assumes you’re the answer to the problem.
Do you want to know why most men really hate marriage counseling? Because it’s a blow to their ego. Think about it, if your wife came to you and said, “Honey, I think we should see a marriage counselor,” who do you think she believes needs to change, you or her?
Because of this, a marriage counselor puts most men on the defensive. You’re already, subconsciously, starting from a weakened position, asking yourself, “What’s wrong with me?” "I don't have any mental health issues, do I?"
For instance, the last time your wife criticized you, did it make you want to give her a big hug and kiss, and say, “Thank you Sweetheart for pointing out my faults and for recommending we go to marriage counseling three to four times a week to see what’s wrong with me”? Of course not.
Assuming you are (or she’s) the problem doesn’t build intimacy between you; it can actually create an emotional barrier. What "real married couple" have you ever seen get happier by one person criticizing the other for not meeting his or her emotional needs?
On the other hand, a marriage coach assumes you’re the answer, not the problem. A marriage coach’s job isn’t to point the finger of blame, and put you on the defensive, but rather to put you on the offensive by pointing you in the right direction, empowering and equipping you to get past your hurts, habits, and hang ups.
A great marriage coach won’t allow you to play the victim, lose hope, throw in the towel, and bale out on your marriage. A coach’s job is to help you become the best version of yourself, period.
Think about it, what gets you more excited and makes you feel more hopeful, “I’m going to see my coach, so I can work on a game plan for improving my marriage” or “My wife told me I need to get counseling or else she’s leaving me?”
Reason 2: Marriage counseling focuses on the problems; a marriage coach focuses on the solutions.
Any fool can complain, and that’s exactly what most couples do when they go to marriage counseling. It goes back to reason #1, it assumes one of you is the problem, and more than likely, neither one you think it’s you.
Couples typically find themselves arguing right after a counseling session, because focusing on each other’s faults makes one feel more resentful, helpless, and hopeless.
If you want to destroy any relationship faster than the Cleveland Cavaliers getting swept in the playoffs, just focus on what’s wrong with your partner. Dwelling on her faults, or she dwelling on yours, is just the opposite of what you did when you fell in love. You each assumed you were the answer to each other’s problems, not the cause of them.
Remember when you admired her witty sense of humor when you first got married, and now you think she’s “always” being sarcastic and disrespectful.
And remember when she admired your ambition and work ethic, and now she claims you work too much and won’t make time for her. What changed? Nothing, but your perspectives.
A marriage coach intentionally changes your perspective. He gets you to focus on the possibilities in your marriage, not the obstacles; the opportunities, not the difficulties; the solutions, not the problems.
Based on his own success and the successes of his past clients, he works with you to design a strategic action plan to make the necessary changes in your life, and he’s willing to help you every step of the way.
Reason 3: Marriage counselors are only required to have credentials; but a marriage coach must also have credibility and experience.
Some marriage counselors are highly qualified, but many aren’t happily married (or even married at all). Is this who you want to pay ($90 – $125/hr.) for marital advice? Would you take fitness tips from a 350-pound personal trainer who just had bypass surgery?
If your marriage counselor doesn’t have the kind of relationship you want, he simply can’t tell you how to build one.
On the other hand, a successful marriage coach may not be perfect, but he attracts new clients and is hired because of his credibility, not just his credentials. A marriage coach with credentials, but no credibility, is a marriage coach with no coaching clients. Men hire coaches base on the coach’s success, not their list of multiple degrees.
A marriage coach with great credentials is just icing on the cake, not the entire cake. So, instead of looking for someone with an impressive diploma, seek a coach who’s in a happy, healthy, intimate relationship.
Reason 4: Marriage counseling allows a man to hide; a marriage coach won’t let you.
Let’s be hone