Split Up – Divorce?

Divorce, Split? Keep Fighting, Distancing? Work On It?

Not sure you even want to do counseling? CLARITY COUNSELING is a rapid assessment of where you are.

Clarity counseling is short term, and the focus is not on solving partnership/marital problems but on seeing if they could potentially be solved. The word partnership and marriage are used interchangeably; clarity counseling is available to any couple that is struggling with their committed relationship.

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Hard Choices – Clarity Matters

Unlike traditional marriage/partnership counseling that assumes that both people are willing to work on the marriage/partnership, clarity counseling helps people decide whether to work on their marriage/partnership or simply split up. The clarity counselor works to understand both partners, even if they see things very differently.

Who is clarity counseling for?

Clarity Counseling is appropriate when one or both are considering dissolving their partnership but are not completely sure if it’s the right path. They want to take one more look before making a permanent decision with long term consequences. It’s for people who want to give their marriage/partnership another chance even though their partner is moving towards dissolving their partnership.

If you are interested in clarity counseling but your partner is not interested at this time please take a look below at “Hopeful Partner.”

What does clarity counseling involve?

Sessions are divided between conversation with the couple together and individual conversations with each partner. The counselor respects the reasons for dissolving their partnership while trying to carefully explore the possibility of restoring the marriage/partnership to health.

The counselor emphasizes the importance of each party seeing his or her own contributions to the problems and the possible solutions. This will be useful in future relationships even if this one ends. Clarity counseling is considered successful when people have clarity and confidence in their decision.

When a decision emerges, the counselor helps the parties either to find professionals who can help them have a constructive dissolving their partnership or to formulate a reconciliation work plan to create a healthy, successful marriage/partnership. In some cases, couples decide to take a time out from the clarity process and return later.

How many sessions are there?

Clarity counseling typically involves a maximum of five counseling sessions. The first session is usually 2 hours, and subsequent sessions are 1.5 to 2 hours

Clarity counseling is NOT suitable when:

  • One partner has made a final decision to dissolving their partnership and wants counseling to encourage the other partner accept that decision
  • There is a danger of domestic violence
  • There is an Order of Protection from the court
  • One partner is coercing the other to participate

Counseling for Individuals: “Hopeful Partner” Counseling

Are you committed to doing whatever it takes to save your marriage/partnership, but your partner says he or she wants a dissolving their partnership? You are not alone. This is a very common scenario, and sometimes it is possible to work constructively on your marriage/partnership even when you partner will not do Clarity Counseling with you at the present time.

The goal of Hopeful Partner Counseling is to help you bring your best self to your partnership/marital crisis in the hope that there will be a constructive outcome, hopefully restoring the marriage/partnership but if not, a more cooperative dissolving their partnership.

The Hopeful Partner counselor will support your desire to save your marriage/partnership by helping you learn from this crisis about yourself and the marriage/partnership, and engage in healthy, constructive ways to prevent a dissolving their partnership and restore your marriage/partnership to health if that is possible.

Hopeful Partner Counseling, which is usually between 1 and 5 sessions, focuses on:

  • Learning how to make positive changes that will be healthy for you and may contribute to saving your marriage/partnership
  • Avoiding common mistakes that make things worse during a partnership/marital crisis
  • Creating a more collaborative relationship with your partner even if the marriage/partnership ends in dissolving their partnership

Hopeful Partner counseling is NOT suitable when:

  • Someone wants to preserve the marriage/partnership but is not willing to look at his or her own contributions to the partnership/marital problems
  • There is a danger of domestic violence
  • There is an Order of Protection from the court

This information brief is modified slightly from the University of Minnesota’s excellent Couples on the Brink Project.