Finding The Best Divorce Counseling Near Me

By Michael Puskar

Updated December 09, 2019

Reviewer Kristen Hardin

The statistics might vary slightly, but the divorce rate in the country tends to hover around 50 percent. But, no one who gets married plans on getting divorced. That means, if you find yourself facing the end of your marriage, it can be an overwhelming time full of confusing emotions. It's a difficult situation when you're trying to work through it on your own. However, there is an option that can help you through the process, and it starts with a simple search for, "the best divorce counseling near me."

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The divorce rate in the United States used to hover around 50 percent, but research shows that from 2008 to 2016, this statistic dropped around 18 percent. This decline is due in part to counseling becoming more accessible for couples. Counseling can also be a valuable asset in getting through a divorce, and you will learn why as you read on.

What Is Divorce Counseling?

You have probably heard of marriage counseling. In fact, you may have even been through marriage counseling while trying to save your marriage. Marriage counseling is for couples that are working to improve their relationship, recover after challenging marital situations, or make a decision about whether it is healthy to stay married. For some couples, divorce counseling leads to improved communication and increased marital satisfaction. However, for others, it brings a different solution, the realization that divorce is the best decision.

Divorce counseling is for people who are going through a divorce and have likely already been through the marriage counseling process. Where marriage counseling strives to educate couples on how to work through their problems and reunite as a couple, divorce counseling works by educating people on how to move forward in a healthy way after their marriage ends.

You can attend divorce counseling on your own or with your ex-partner. While it might sound like an uncomfortable idea to go to counseling with someone you have already divorced or plan on divorcing, it can have many benefits, especially if you have children together. A therapist can help you learn how to interact with each other healthily as you co-parent your children. Co-parenting can be difficult, and it's to your advantage to learn how to do it effectively. The early days are especially difficult as you both work to find your new normal and adjust to being divorced. Having an unbiased, objective third party can make this transition easier. Your counselor will create a safe space that you and your ex-spouse can use to have difficult conversations in an effective and healthy way.

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When Should You Attend Divorce Counseling?

There is no right or wrong answer to this question. Therapists usually divide sessions into pre-divorce and post-divorce counseling to help make your transition easier. However, if you start before your divorce and don't feel you need to continue afterward, you don't have to. Also, if you have already been through your divorce without pre-divorce counseling, you can jump into the therapy sessions after the divorce is final. Counseling before the divorce can help you learn how to deal with each other civilly. You will need to have some form of communication with the other person as you work toward finalizing the details of the divorce. This process can be easier when you have someone helping you work through your feelings.

Who Should Attend Divorce Counseling?

Divorce counseling works under a number of circumstances. For starters, if you and your spouse have recently decided that you are going to divorce, it can be helpful to get guidance on how to handle the process. You don't need to worry about the counselor trying to change your mind. And you don't need to worry that they're going to judge you. Licensed therapists are trained to meet you where you are and with your specific goals. If you don't want to stay in the marriage, they aren't going to try to force you to reconcile.

You don't need your spouse to attend sessions with you. While it can be helpful, especially if you have children together, you can still benefit significantly from attending on your own. You can also attend together in the beginning and later separate if attending together is no longer needed. Maybe you have both reached a point of realizing that you need to learn how to improve your relationship as a divorced couple for the sake of the children. Or maybe you have felt stuck since your divorce was finalized. You aren't exactly sure how to move forward. The separation seems to be the only thing you can think about. You struggle with depression and feel unmotivated, confused, hurt, angry, sad, and other difficult emotions. This is when individual divorce counseling can be beneficial.

It's common to work through the stages of grief during and after your divorce. A therapist can help you through each step in a healthy way. It's perfectly normal to struggle as you learn to reestablish who you are now that you are no longer a couple. Your therapist can also help you work through any guilt that you have or help you reach a point of forgiveness.

What to Look for in a Divorce Counselor

When looking for a divorce counselor, you'll want to seek a licensed therapist. You'll also want to find one that is experienced in providing counseling through and after divorce. While any licensed therapist can provide you with this type of advice, it doesn't necessarily mean it's their area of expertise. If religion is important to you, you may want to find a therapist that aligns with your values and beliefs.

You will also want to check their availability. Chances are, when you are working through a divorce or are recently divorced, you are dealing with a major change to your schedule. This is especially true if you have children. That means you need to be able to get to counseling when it works best for you. If you choose a therapist who doesn't have availability for months, it's not going to be helpful for issues that you want to address right now.

Things to Remember When Dealing with Divorce

Along with going to divorce counseling, here are some other things that can help you through this time:

  • Don't isolate yourself. You're hurting, and you might have had your trust broken, and you could be feeling ashamed and embarrassed. These are all normal feelings when getting divorced. However, these feelings can cause you to isolate yourself. You don't want to do this. This is the time to surround yourself with family and friends who love you.
  • Practice self-care. When your life as you know it is dramatically changed, it's easy to forget about taking care of yourself. You might not feel hungry or full of energy, but you need to take care of yourself. Make sure to get enough sleep. But also make sure you aren't oversleeping. It's easy when you feel depressed or worried to just want to stay in bed. Make sure you exercise. It's great for your mental health. And make healthy eating choices. Your schedule might be busy right now, and it's tempting to just hit the drive-through, but that will make you feel worse in the long run. Keep some healthy snacks on hand so you have something nutritious to grab in a hurry.
  • Find things you enjoy doing. This is a time of transition, which is a great time to rediscover who you are and what your passions are. Pick up old hobbies that you haven't had time for or try something new.

Looking For The Best Divorce Counseling Near You?
We Can Help. Chat With A Board-Certified Relationship Counselor Today.

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How to Find a Divorce Counselor Near You

There are plenty of ways to get started. You can start with a simple Google search: "divorce counseling near me." Do a little research into each therapist before you choose one to work with. You want to make sure that you find someone you trust and are comfortable talking to.

If you know anyone who has been through a recent divorce, you can try asking them for suggestions. If they completed divorce counseling themselves, they might have a great personal recommendation. However, make sure you interview the therapist to see if they are a good fit for you as well.

If you can't find a local therapist experienced in divorce counseling or your schedule makes it hard to get to appointments, you can try online therapy. There are services like those offered by BetterHelp that allow you access to therapists from the comfort and privacy of your home.

Online therapy is a great option for those with busy schedules or who live in an area where there may not be much availability. You can get started anywhere you have an Internet connection, and all you need is a smartphone, tablet, or computer. You and your ex can do this counseling together, or alone as individuals. Read below for some reviews of BetterHelp counselors from people experiencing similar issues.

Counselor Reviews

"When I signed up for BetterHelp I was in the midst of a major life crisis. I was seeking a compassionate, experienced counselor like Jillian to help me cope with the initial pain, anger, and anxiety. Also, I chose Jillian because in her self description she states, 'I'm a big believer in seeing life challenges, especially the most painful ones, as a catalyst for self-discovery, personal growth, and positive change.' This really resonated with me. I knew that I wanted my experience to be an opportunity for personal growth. I am incredibly grateful that Jillian indeed helped me grieve and work through the challenges of divorce and early motherhood. She helped me learn about myself and transform my life in a positive way. She offered practical, specific tools to incorporate into my daily routine. She helped me to reconnect with myself and clarify and move towards my life goals. She offered constructive advice for interacting with my ex-husband and maintaining boundaries. Through working with her I was able to care for myself so that I could be a mindful, present mama and really soak in the precious moments with my newborn daughter. My sessions with Jillian made a huge difference as I navigated this time in my life. I could not recommend her more highly."

"Riddhi has really helped me to find real solutions to my problems and concerns. For the first time I am able to understand HOW to accomplish my goals and not just that goals exist. I still have a long way to go but she is helping me: -cope with divorce -overcome anger issues I have -repair my self esteem -recognize my triggers."

Final Thoughts: It Takes Time

Remember that healing takes time. Even with counseling, hurtful situations take time to recover from. Don't pressure yourself to bounce back to normal right away. You may have good days and bad days, and that's okay. Allow yourself time to feel the emotions that you have. Don't allow others to pressure you into doing things that you're not ready for or make you feel bad that you aren't "feeling better" faster. Everyone recovers in their own time and their own way.

A licensed therapist experienced in divorce counseling can help you work through the process and make it much easier than going through it alone. With the right tools, you'll be well on your way to a fulfilling life in which your relationship with your ex doesn't negatively affect you. Take the first step today.


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