Before you got married, you probably heard people say things like “marriage isn’t easy.” And if you’re like most couples, you probably thought that was true for others, but it wasn’t going to be true for you. Fast-forward a few years and you most likely realized that advice was actually a huge understatement.
Not only is marriage not “easy”; it can be downright hard at times.
I’ve shared before about some of the struggles that my wife and I have had in our marriage, as well as tips on how to rekindle your love. There are plenty of things that you can do to build and keep a strong marriage. But there are times when it can be really helpful to bring in a professional like a couples therapist.
Sometimes that outside perspective and experience is needed in order to help you and your spouse identify and work past your struggles and reconnect. But when checking Thumbtack, the cost of traditional therapy can range anywhere from $50 to $275 per session. That can feel overwhelming when you’re trying to stick to a family budget. Especially if you feel like your relationship has hit rock bottom and you might want more than one session a week.
Affordable couples therapy options
Thankfully there are some affordable options for couples therapy. Some to consider include:
Online couples counseling with BetterHelp
There are a few ways that online counseling with BetterHelp can be an affordable alternative to in-person traditional therapy. You can read reviews about BetterHelp here: https://www.trustpilot.com/review/www.betterhelp.com?page=24.
First off, you pay a set price for the month and then have unlimited access 24/7 to a therapist. That means you can get help when you need it instead of calling to schedule an appointment and needing to wait days or weeks before being able to get it.
Secondly, if you have small children, online counseling lets you meet with a therapist without needing to pay a babysitter or find someone that can watch the kids during your sessions.
You and your spouse are able to have sessions together and individually, letting you get the most bang for your buck. And you’ll be speaking with an experienced and licensed therapist.
Meet with a pastor or religious leader
If you are a member of a church or other religious organization, you may be able to get free or low-cost counseling. This can be a great option if religion is an important part of your life.
When going this route, it’s important to understand what qualifications the “counselor” has. They are not likely to be a licensed therapist. If that is important to you, check to see if they have any certifications or have attended any training for couples counseling.
Attend a marriage conference
There are many different marriage conferences that take place around the country that you can attend for help with your marriage. Some of these are put on by trained therapists and others are by speakers or other nonprofit organizations.
It’s important to read the details of the conference to see what’s included. Some of these conferences are just enjoyable getaways to help you reconnect and have fun with your spouse.
They may be in fun destinations or include things like comedian nights and fancy dinners. These can be a great option if you feel like you and your spouse just aren’t getting enough alone time together. Or, if you want to help keep the relationship strong.
But there are other marriage conferences and events that will provide therapy sessions that can help you identify and work through challenges that you’re facing in your relationship. Some will have you attend group sessions with other couples. And others will provide you with time to meet with a therapist as a couple.
Events like these come with a wide range of prices, so you may need to hunt around to find which one is the most affordable for you. Also, make sure you pay attention to what’s included such as food and lodging, so you aren’t caught off guard with hidden expenses.
Look for a therapist with a sliding scale
If you want to attend therapy in-person while still keeping your costs down, you may be able to find a therapist that offers a sliding scale for services. This means that the amount you pay for your sessions will be based on your income.
The therapist will have a set price for their sessions, and you will pay a percentage of it based on your income level. However, there is generally a minimum where the scale stops, so don’t expect to be getting therapy sessions for $10 or anything like that.
Marriage courses or webinars
Much like a marriage conference, there are online courses and webinars that you can attend that will work to teach you and your spouse important skills that can help improve your relationship.
If you’re interested in going this route, make sure you do your homework to see what the course was built around. Find out who developed it and what their credentials are.
Strengthening your marriage
Couples counseling isn’t only for couples that have hit rock bottom.
Yes, it can help couples that don’t feel they are “in love” anymore and couples that have experienced affairs. But couples counseling can also help if you just aren’t feeling that connected any more or you have a sneaking suspicion that things could be better.
If your marriage isn’t where you want it to be, don’t hesitate in getting help.