Marriage is not always a bed of roses. Conflicts and disagreements are bound to occur, and at times, the conflicts and disagreements can spiral, despite your best efforts. At such times, a professional counselor can help you work out your differences through marriage counseling or couples therapy.
During the marriage counseling sessions, your counselor would generally ask you and your spouse to express yourself and ask each other questions to get to the root of the problem and find out ways to resolve your differences.
Marriage counseling sessions can be tough, and given the fact that you are emotionally charged, your mind might go blank. Thus, it is best you prepare a set of questions that you can ask your partner to keep the conversation going. Read on as we list helpful marriage counseling questions that you could ask your spouse in the presence of your counselor.
25 Marriage Counseling Questions
1. What are the main issues in our marriage?
Ask your partner what they consider are the main issues in your relationship and reveal yours too. Accept the fact that what might seem to be a problem to them might seem insignificant to you and vice versa. For instance, yours may be finance, while theirs may be personal habits and family.
2. What are the most pressing problems in our marriage?
Now that you know what concerns each of you, try to identify the problems that you think would need immediate attention. Do not rebuff each other’s points but try to discuss and work at finding solutions to those problems. Your counselor could help you identify those.
3. How and when did the problems start?
Was it that time when you did something without consulting them or was it when they went out with someone? Identifying the main cause of a problem can help you arrive at solutions.
4. Is this just a bad phase in our marriage?
All relationships have their own share of ups and downs. Weigh the problems you are facing and reason if this is just a bad phase or if the problem has gone out of hand. If it is the latter, you may have to highlight the problems outright during the counseling sessions.
5. What made you seek/ accept professional help?
Ask them why they sought counseling. Also, find out what they expect from the counseling process. If both of you have sought counseling because you still desire to be with each other and want to save your marriage, you might be on the right track.
6. What are the things that you can’t stand about me?
Asking each other this question can help you understand each other better. If you are ready to set those things right and find ways to compensate for them and your partner reciprocates too, you may be in for something positive. After all, every relationship requires a certain amount of give-and-take.
7. What are the things that you love about me?
Marriage counseling sessions do not have to revolve around just the negative things. Let your spouse know why you fell in love with them and highlight their positive traits. Also, ask them what they love about you. This could boost your confidence, and you could approach the sessions optimistically.
8. Are there past conflicts that we need to resolve?
Is a past conflict that hasn’t been resolved holding you both back? Identify and resolve those conflicts because they will continue to pop up in your future arguments too. Open up to each other without being judgemental and remind each other that you can only truly move on if you hold no grudges.
9. Do I fulfill your physical needs?
See if there is a difference in sexual desire between the two of you. The lack of sexual intimacy could be one of the main problems in your relationship. Ask your partner if they are satisfied sexually. Sexual satisfaction could include frequent kissing, holding of hands, cuddling, caressing, etc., and not just sex.
10. Are you seeing someone?
You may not have had the courage to ask your partner if they have been cheating on you. So, the best time to ask them about it is during a counseling session. Be prepared to listen to what they have to say without letting anger get the better of you.
11. Do you trust me?
Trust is the cornerstone of any relationship. Ask your spouse if they feel secure being around you, confiding in you, and communicating freely with you, and ask yourself if you feel the same. If the answer is no, then you may have to settle your differences with the help of your counselor.
12. What should I do to regain your trust?
Ask your spouse what specific things you could do to regain their trust and work on those. If you have broken their trust, acknowledge your mistake and ask forgiveness, and most importantly, learn to forgive yourself. Also, ensure you give each other time to process your feelings.
13. Are we communicating enough?
Ask your spouse if they are able to communicate honestly and openly with you. Are you able to tell each other about your needs, wants, and expectations? Are you able to discuss your issues calmly? And do you listen to each other? If no, you need to work on improving your communication.
14. Do I stress you out?
Ask your partner if certain habits of yours are stressing them out and if you are difficult to deal with. Identify the underlying causes that are leading to their stress. Try to communicate openly, ask them what you could do to alleviate their stress, and let them know what stresses you.
15. Do you think there’s an intimacy between us?
Ask them if they are able to connect with you emotionally and physically and express their thoughts and feelings with you without inhibition. Find out what you could do to regain the intimacy that you shared in the early phases of your relationship.
16. How do you feel about me on a daily basis?
Asking this question to your partner can help you know if they enjoy your company and are excited about you. Also, ask them if the thought of you brings a smile on their face. If the answer is no, you may have to ask yourself a few questions and find ways to bring the spark back.
17. Do you feel loved?
Ask your partner if they feel cared for and loved and if you are doing enough to meet their needs. Also, ask them what they expect from you to feel more loved. You and your partner could even come up with a list of the things that make you feel special.
18. Is the relationship impacting your self-esteem?
Ask your partner if any act of yours is affecting their self-worth and self-esteem both at home and socially. Also, assess if their actions are affecting your self-worth. Take help from your counselor and see if you can arrive at solutions to help each other feel worthy and loved.
19. Are we willing to compromise?
Look at your marriage and see if there have been times when one of you had to make all the sacrifices to make the other person happy. If yes, you may have to discuss your boundaries and set common goals. As a couple, you need to find the middle ground on different issues to make the marriage work.
20. Are we holding each other back?
Do you keep each other’s interest in mind while making important decisions? Do you allow each other to pursue your own hobbies and dreams? Do you give each other space to do your own things? Do you complement each other and help each other grow? These are some questions that you need to ask each other.
21. Are you willing to change?
No amount of counseling will help save your relationship if you are not willing to change and make adjustments to keep the relationship alive. Ask your partner where they stand with regard to making adjustments and resolving any issue that is causing conflict in your relationship.
22. What can I do to make our relationship better?
Marriage is a two-way street in which each partner needs to put in continuous effort to keep the spark alive. Asking this question indicates to your partner that you are ready to take steps to salvage your marriage. It also shows that you are not putting all the blame onto your partner.
23. Is our marriage what you pictured it to be?
Ask your partner if they are happy with how things have moved in the marriage. Ask them if you have added to their happiness and made them a better person. And, ask if the relationship is what they had first pictured it to be. These questions will let you know if you are adding any value to your partner’s life.
24. What makes you happy about our marriage?
Ask your partner about the things that make them truly happy. This could help you identify your partner’s definition of happiness—it could be contentment, loyalty, intimacy, laughter, etc. This question will also let you know if you have been ignoring those things that matter most to your partner.
25. Do you still love me?
As anxious as it may seem, asking this question to your partner can help you know if the relationship is worth fighting for. Ask for honest answers, and let your partner know if you still have feelings for them. Their answers could let you know if they are ready to fight through adversity.
26. Where do you see our relationship in 5–10 years?
Have discussions regarding your future. Ask them how they view your future together as a couple. If you feel you are in their plans, then it indicates that they still have feelings for you. Discussing your future can help both of you set goals and work at accomplishing them.
Pick any of the questions from this list that you think could be helpful to you. Although all the marriage counseling questions in this list may not be applicable to your specific situation, we hope they help you frame relevant questions that you can use to understand your spouse better.