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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Discernment Counseling is designed for couples where one or both partners are uncertain about the future of their relationship. It's a short-term, goal-oriented process that helps you gain clarity and confidence in your decision-making. Together we’ll explore the underlying issues in your relationship, gain insights into what has led to this point, and examine your options moving forward.

— Kenny Levine, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Sandy, UT

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
 

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

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
 

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
 

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 was developed for couples who are on the fence about staying in their marriage. In these cases, typically one person wants to stay married and work on salvaging the relationship, while the other partner feels like divorce or separation is the only option. This intensive, short-term process helps both partners gain clarity around the immensely painful and difficult decision around taking steps to preserve the relationship or taking steps toward ending the marriage.

— Trisha Andrews, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Parker, CO
 

Specifically for couples who are on the brink of divorce. Come to a decision about the future of your marriage. Understand how your marriage got to where it is, as well as each partner's contribution to the breakdown of the relationship. Decide whether or not those contributions can be worked on in couples therapy.

— Allyson Clemmons, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Boston, MA

Discernment counseling is a short-term intervention, with a maximum of 5 sessions.Unlike traditional marriage counseling, the goal is not to start to solve the problems in the relationship. Rather, to give couples more confidence in their decision making. Discernment counseling is not for couples where one of the parties has already decided that they want a divorce. In discernment counseling, the assumption is that both parties are still considering restoring the health of the marriage.

— Jennifer Gay, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Dallas, TX
 

Discernment counseling is for couples on the brink of divorce. Discernment counseling avoids starting half-hearted couples therapy with these mixed-agenda couples. It accepts ambivalence rather than trying to work around it or overcome it.

— Traci Brown, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in , TX

Discernment Counseling does not help you to solve your marital problems but to see if they are solvable. It provides a chance to slow down, take a breath, and look at options.. The aim is to help couples gain clarity and confidence about a direction to either try to restore your marriage to health, move toward divorce, or take time and decide later.

— David Low, Marriage & Family Therapist in Fox Point, WI
 

I have specialized training in Discernment Counseling and have worked with couples on the brink of divorce or breaking (i.e., discerning what to do) throughout my entire career.

— Kaleb Burningham, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist

If you or your spouse are considering divorce but are not completely sure that’s the best path … you are in a tough spot, and Discernment Counseling is designed for you. It’s a chance to slow down, take a breath, and look at your options for your marriage. 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.

— Michele Bailey, Marriage & Family Therapist in Denver, CO