Discernment Counseling

Discernment Counseling is designed for people who are considering divorce but are not completely sure if it's the right path for them. Divorce is one of the biggest and complex decisions you will make and you have probably spent months, even years, contemplating this move. Discernment Counseling is a really good way to evaluate your marriage and take action- either pursue divorce or commit to a course of marital therapy to save the marriage.

This approach helps “mixed agenda” couples where one partner wants to work on the marriage and the other partner is leaning toward divorce and is ambivalent about couples counseling. These couples want to take one more look before making a permanent decision with long term consequences.

Discernment counseling is not like traditional marriage counseling that assumes both partners are willing to work on the marriage. It is short term in length (up to 5 sessions), and the focus is not on solving marital problems but on seeing if they could potentially be solved.

The counseling sessions are structured with each partner given one-on-one time with the counselor to discuss how the marriage got to this point, and then for each partner to tell each other what they have learned about their marriage. The discernment counselor emphasizes the importance of each party seeing his or her own contributions to the problems in the marriage and the possible solutions. At the end of the process, couples are more at peace and with more clarity with the decision they have made (either divorce or reconciliation) and have confidence that they are doing the right thing.

Discernment Counseling is for those couples who are unhappy and are unsure what to do with their marriage. Perhaps one of you has already contacted a divorce lawyer, and yet there is still a part of you that is unsure about divorce. Discernment Counseling offers you and your partner a smooth transition to either a recommitment to the marriage or to separation and divorce, and it reduces the current emotional conflict surrounding this important decision. And if you feel that divorce is the right option at the end of the sessions, it can make the divorce process smoother with less fighting.

If you would like to learn more about Discernment Counseling and see how this can bring more clarity to your relationship, please call Dean Janeff at 512-333-4820 or email him at therapy@deanjaneff.com for a free 15-minute consultation.