Discernment Counseling

Deciding whether or not to stay in a marriage or get divorced can be one of the most difficult and agonizing decisions you face in life. For many couples, this state of limbo (should I stay or should I go) can last months or even years. Discernment counseling is an assessment process that was created to help partners decide between three outcomes: to work on improving the relationship (often with couples counseling), to maintain the current relationship as is, or to get divorced. Unlike traditional couples counseling, which is typically open-ended and can last for years, discernment counseling is generally brief and typically completed in 3-5 sessions. Think this approach could work for you and your partner(s)? Reach out to one of TherapyDen’s discernment counseling experts today. 

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Trained and working towards certification with Dr. Bill Dougherty in helping couples decide to work on their relationship.

— Traci Ruble, Marriage & Family Therapist in , CA

If you're struggling with your marriage and uncertain about the future, I understand how difficult that can be. You haven’t agreed to end your relationship, but you haven’t decided to stay together either. When one or both partners is seriously considering separation or divorce, discernment counseling can help. Discernment counseling helps couples struggling with the decision to stay together or separate find clarity and confidence in whatever decision they make.

— Valery Krieg, Clinical Social Worker in Evergreen, CO
 

If you're struggling with your marriage and uncertain about the future, I understand how difficult that can be. You haven’t agreed to end your relationship, but you haven’t decided to stay together either. When one or both partners is seriously considering separation or divorce, discernment counseling can help. Discernment counseling helps couples struggling with the decision to stay together or separate find clarity and confidence in whatever decision they make.

— Valery Krieg, Clinical Social Worker in Evergreen, CO

Discernment counseling is a short-term model designed to assist couples on the brink. The goal of this intervention is to develope clarity about the marriage, secure confidence in moving forward, and understanding of the role each partner has contributed to the struggle. These goals are obtained by focusing on three specific pathways: path 1. Remaining in the marriage without change, path 2. Separation or divorce, path 3. Commitment to a course of 6 months of couples therapy.

— Joseph Winn, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Concord, MA
 

Discernment Counseling isn't therapy. The discernment process is meant to provide you with clarity and confidence about a direction for your relationship based on a deeper understanding of what has happened in your relationship as well exploring the possibilities for the future. Discernment counseling is brief- just 1-5 sessions; and goal-directed, meaning there's no time to waste. If you're stuck and uncertain of the future. Discernment counseling can help.

— Mark Cagle, Counselor in Dallas, TX

If you or your partner are considering divorce but are not completely sure that’s the best path, Discernment Counseling is designed for you. I will help you decide whether to try to restore your marriage to health or move toward divorce. The goal is for you to gain clarity and confidence about a direction, based on a deeper understanding of your relationship and its possibilities for the future. The goal is not to solve your marital problems but to see if they are solvable.

— Katrina Kuzyszyn-Jones, Psychologist in Durham, NC
 

I have worked with couples who are at a crossroad in their marriage determine next steps for their relationship. Discernment counseling helps couples decide whether or not to end their marriage. This approach can be particularly effective when one partner wants to leave the relationship, but the other wants to remain together. Within one to five sessions, the therapist helps the couple determine if they would like the marriage to remain as is, commit to 6 months marriage counseling, or divorce.

— Shari Anderson, Marriage and Family Therapist Associate in Nashville, TN

I'm a certified Discernment Counselor who helps couples unsure about their relationship's future. Through our sessions, we'll explore the issues that have brought you to this point, and I'll help you to understand the dynamics of your relationship and to make an informed decision about the best path forward. I aim to help you and your partner find clarity, peace of mind, and the confidence to make the right decision for both of you.

— Dr. Tom Murray, Sex and Relationship Therapist, Sex Therapist in Greensboro, NC

Discernment counseling is a brief (4-6) session process of evaluating whether the parties are leaning into, or out of, a relationship. This approach is about creating a conditional alignment that opens up possibilities of more collaborative engagement and understanding between partners.

— Mark Stewart, Registered Marriage and Family Therapist Intern in Columbia, SC
 

Discernment counseling is a new, very brief, targeted type of therapy for couples who are considering splitting up. Our goal is to find clarity and confidence about how to proceed. We don't try to solve your problems as a couple in discernment counseling. We determine whether your problems are solvable. One possible outcome is choosing to enter couples therapy together, but we don't assume that is the right path for you. I have extensive training in discernment counseling.

— Gretta Duleba, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in , WA

When a couple presents to therapy with two different goals, one being to stay in the relationship, and the other being unsure, I would recommend discernment counseling. Discernment counseling allows for the couple to determine what they want for the future of their relationship. This can be deciding on a definite divorce, possible separation, or deciding on going to couple's therapy to work on any relational issues. The choice is up to the client, with the therapist being a coach.

— Caroline Rucker, Associate Marriage & Family Therapist in Dallas, TX
 

Sometimes couples aren't on the same page about how to help their relationship. We call this a "mixed-agenda couple," and often, traditional couples therapy doesn't work with them. Bill Doherty has created this specialized method of treatment that looks at your reasons to stay together and to separate, and helps you come to a decision without judgment of either choice.

— Nicole Locorriere, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Flemington, NJ

Discernment Counseling is 1-5 sessions (in person in WA or virtual). I help couples gain clarity about the problems in their relationship and each person's contributions to those problems while also exploring the next best path (path 1-status quo/keep things as is, path 2-separation or divorce, path 3-couples therapy). Once a path is chosen clients often choose to meet an additional time to plan for their chosen path. I am certified with the Doherty Institute as a discernment counselor.

— Faith Franz, Counselor in Oak Harbor, WA
 

I was born with the spirit of discernment. I have always been this way and I have never left God’s side or shall I say, God has never left my side. My discernment guides not only my life, but also how I work with clients. I have had many clients feel as if I was reading their mind or as if I really understand them. Discernment leaves no room for error, whereas, education, biases and projections do. Discernment counseling is spiritual in nature and allows God to speak through counselor/coach

— Chiaku Hanson, Counselor in Los Angeles, CA

Discernment Counseling is designed for the couple who is experiencing divorce or breakup ambivalence. The goal of Discernment Counseling is to create greater clarity, confidence, and understanding about how to proceed in making a decision about the future of the relationship.

— Camila Flores, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist Intern in San Antonio, TX
 

I am a certified Discernment Counselor. Discernment Counseling is a brief model of 1-5 sessions that seeks to help very ambivalent couples gain clarity and confidence in a direction for their relationship/marriage.

— Mary Fisher, Therapist in Salt Lake City, UT

Discernment Counseling is for couples on the brink. It is a chance to make space to look at your options for your marriage, without working on the relationship. The goal is for you to gain clarity and confidence about a direction, based on a deeper understanding of your relationship and its possibilities for the future. I will work with each of you to help you decide whether to try to restore your marriage to health, move toward divorce, or take a time out and decide later.

— Rosemary Senjem, Marriage & Family Therapist in Stillwater, MN