Marriage Counseling Basics
What are two foundational principles for successful marriage counseling? They are Repentance & Forgiveness.
Repentance is a heartfelt sorrow for what a person has done to his or her partner. In every marriage, we hurt each other, and a key to succes is for each party to take responsibility for the behaviors that have hurt the other. Even if the behavior is in reaction, one must take full responsibility. If my partner spoke rudely to me 6 times, and I spoke rudely 1 time, I must have a heartfelt sorrow for my 1 rude comment, and work on stopping this behavior. What about her 6 times? What about it? Take responsibility for your 1, and go from there. If each partner will do this, we will make some progress.
Forgiveness is the prayerful determination to let go of the resentment and offenses that a partner carries in his or her heart. Resentment is the cancer of any relationship. Each partner must be willing to forgive for past offenses. Is forgiveness saying that the past behavior was ok. Absolutely not! It is saying that I will not keep recycling through this past offense, and letting it live in my heart continually.
When a couple commits to true repentance and sincere forgiveness, we have a foundation to rebuild a relationship. Without these two attributes, marriage counseling becomes a referee match.
Repent and Forgive, to restore and freely live.
Dean Sunseri is a marriage counselor and he has an office in Baton Rouge and New Orleans. Call him today at 225-290-7252 to set up an appointment.