Divorcing? Marriage Counseling Can Help
Even if you are in the middle of a divorce, marriage counseling can help to save your marriage.
Question: A Northville Patch reader asked: “Help! My husband filed for divorce, but I want to give it another try. I think he will commit to marriage counseling, but will it really work?”
Answer: Marriage counseling can always help save your marriage, even if you are in the middle of a divorce.
The State of North Dakota is considering a law making marriage counseling mandatory for couples who want to get divorced. This law would require couples who want to divorce to actually postpone that divorce for a year, and go through mandatory marriage counseling. The only exemption would be if t here were substantiated allegations of domestic violence in the marriage.
To understand the effectiveness of marriage counseling, even with couples who are going through a divorce, I spoke with Dr. Gail Majcher, a Northville psychologist. I also asked Dr. Gail what her thoughts were on the proposed North Dakota law.
Wendy Alton: “Dr Gail, what are your thoughts on a law that requires mandatory marriage counseling before a couple files for divorce?”
Dr. Gail: “Marriage counseling is a good idea for the majority of cases. In fact, many of my couples have already filed for divorce when they first come in. I think the downfall is that it should not be implemented for abuse cases. Sometimes abuse in a marriage is well hidden and difficult to discover.”
Wendy Alton: “Dr. Gail, how common is marriage counseling and is there any sort of success rate?”
Dr. Gail: “I have a masters degree in marriage counseling as well as a Ph.D. in clinical psychology. Over the last 30 years of my practice, marriage counseling constitutes about 30 percent of my cases. The marriage counseling that I conduct is intense and includes homework for the couple so the process can go faster. My success rate for married couples is at least 70 percent.”
As a Northville divorce lawyer, I have to admit that the 70 percent success rate is surprising — but also very encouraging. So, from a professional who knows from experience, marriage counseling can absolutely save your marriage, even if you have filed for divorce.
Dr. Gail is a local Northville psychologist who published a book called “A Worthy Woman: Victory over Domestic Violence, a True Story and Self-Help Book.” She is also WJR's co-host of "Sunday Sessions," a psychological edu-taining show about mental health issues. Dr. Gail can be reached at (248) 345-5050, and her office is at 114 Rayson, Suite One D, Northville.
The information provided in this column is not legal advice. The information provided on this public website is provided solely for the general interest of the visitors to this website. The information contained in the column applies to general principles of law and may not reflect current legal developments or statutory changes in the various jurisdictions and therefore should not be relied upon or interpreted as legal advice. Reading the information contained in this column does not mean that you have established an attorney-client relationship with attorney Wendy Alton or the law firm of Fausone Bohn. Readers of this column should not act upon any information contained in the website without first seeking the advice of legal counsel.
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