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Marriage Counseling & Therapy Services in Tennessee

Marriage Counseling & Therapy Services in Tennessee

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What is Marriage Counseling?

Marriage counseling, sometimes known as couples therapy, focuses exclusively on marriages and relationships. Marriage therapists, often Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists (LMFT), are specially trained to assist couples in identifying their issues and coming up with solutions. Marriage counseling’s comfortable environment allows couples to work things out and express their true feelings.1

Common Reasons to Seek Marriage Counseling

Some specific concerns that frequently cause couples to seek counseling services include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Couples who feel like they constantly argue and can’t seem to agree on anything or resolve conflicts
  • Couples who have differing views on finances, kids, or lifestyle
  • Couples that are unable to properly speak about or find solutions to their unequal distribution of home duties
  • Couples who believe their chemistry has diminished on a sexual or romantic level
  • those who feel their marriage is operating automatically
  • Couples who believe their partner is emotionally inaccessible or who feel unheard
  • Couples who are having a hard time navigating their recent tragedy or loss together
  • Couples who are struggling with drug or alcohol addiction, adultery, or mental illness

What Happens in Marriage Counseling?

The majority of marriage counselors urge participation from both partners during counseling sessions. Because the counselor wants to see how you communicate and provide the skills for better communication, this is the most successful approach for marriage counseling to work. You can still go to marriage therapy alone if your partner is unwilling to go or is unable to for some other reason. You can still gain from it by discovering more about who you are and how you feel about your relationship.

Marriage counseling won’t always be emotionally comfortable, much like most therapy sessions.

Marriage counseling is a secure setting where you can express some of the emotions that aren’t typically expressed, but that can be challenging for you and your partner. Marriage therapy frequently involves strong feelings, maybe tears, and some yelling. That is normal and acceptable. Your marriage therapist aims to establish a safe environment where you and your partner can express your emotions and “let it out.”

Because most couples enter marriage counseling with a specific issue in mind, most sessions are brief. Your therapist may even give “homework” or particular strategies to use when problem solving between sessions.

Most marriage therapists will begin by reviewing their insurance, payment, cancellation, best ways to contact, and other policies. They’ll probably go over the legal and ethical ramifications of a patient-therapist relationship as well. As a patient, don’t hesitate to ask questions about anything not mentioned or any of the policies presented.2

The therapist will then want to understand your goals as a married couple and learn a bit about both parties’ backgrounds. In addition, your therapist will try to develop a thorough grasp of each of your personalities. They will then be able to start thinking about how they can best assist you.

Goals & Benefits of Marriage Counseling

The couple seeking assistance will determine the advantages of couples counseling. The more effort you and your significant other are willing to put into your relationship, the more probable it will succeed.

A few of the primary goals of the initial meeting are:

  • Meeting and getting to know the marriage therapist
  • Introducing yourselves
  • Providing background information about your partnership and your current problem(s)
  • Expressing your top priorities
  • Defining the relationship goals
  • Building a relationship of trust with the marriage therapist
  • Discovering that couples counseling can be a secure environment

Marriage therapists normally won’t advise getting a divorce; they’ll reserve their judgment for themselves. They typically stand by the notion that only the parties involved can morally decide whether to get a divorce or not. Although most marriage therapists still won’t advise a divorce in an abusive relationship, they will undoubtedly assist the victim in separating themselves and seeking assistance.

Effectiveness & Success Rates for Marriage Therapy

Couples counseling does not signal the end of a relationship or marriage. On the contrary, it can be advantageous to the relationship when both partners are open to change. Below are a few promising statistics on marriage counseling:

  • Emotionally-focused couples therapy (EFT), created by Dr. Sue Johnson, is the most researched, common, and successful type of marital counseling. Research shows that this treatment is effective and helpful for people of all racial and cultural backgrounds.3
  • 2015 research indicated EFT to be particularly beneficial for couples struggling with infertility.
  • Over 98% of couples who try marriage counseling say their therapists are either “great” or “good,” according to a study from the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT).4
  • Almost 90% of couples who undertake marriage counseling feel that their emotional health has improved, and two-thirds say that their physical health has improved.
  • According to research, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a successful therapy for couples with problems communicating and resolving conflicts.5
  • The Gottman method of therapy improved marital adjustment and had long-lasting impacts on intimacy and marital satisfaction.6

Cost & Insurance Coverage

Unfortunately, insurance doesn’t typically cover marriage counseling. Depending on the difficulties you want to address, therapy could last anywhere from eight to more than thirty sessions. Several variables can affect what you pay for marriage counseling in Tennessee, but the cost can range from $75 to $250 per hour, with an average of $100.7 Remember that some therapists provide discounts for purchasing numerous sessions or a sliding scale for income-based rates.

The best way to determine whether or not your insurance coverage for therapy includes marital counseling is by calling your insurance provider or by contacting us below. One of our care coordinators can help you navigate your insurance coverage and get the care you need.

How to Find the Best Marriage Counselor

Marriage and family therapy is a specific professional discipline consisting of graduate and post-graduate programs. The educational backgrounds of marriage and family therapists range widely, including psychology, psychiatry, social work, nursing, pastoral counseling, and education.

Along with psychiatry, psychology, social work, and psychiatric nursing, marital and family therapy is one of the key mental health professions recognized by the federal government. All 50 states license marital and family therapists, which supports and regulates the profession.

If you cannot rely on friends’ recommendations, research online reviews and investigate licensing boards’ disciplinary histories. A highly regarded therapist—especially one who has been in practice for some time—is probably one who has lengthy experience in guiding couples through challenges.8 Furthermore, if you find it difficult to receive information, this is a huge red flag because a qualified therapist will gladly provide it.

Consider asking the following questions when searching for your ideal marriage therapist:

  • How many years have you been practicing?
  • How do you define success in relation to marriage therapy?
  • How will we be able to gauge our progress?
  • How long should we anticipate being in therapy?
  • What are your qualifications and experience?
  • Would you ever advise divorce?

Finding a marriage counselor in Tennessee has never been easier with Athena Care’s multiple therapy treatment clinics. In-network with most major insurance plans, our expert care coordinators are here to help Monday through Friday, 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Here, you’ll find a list of licensed therapists organized by city and information about their backgrounds and specialties.

Athena Care offers a full-spectrum of mental and behavioral health services to those in Tennessee.

We have qualified therapists and accept many of the big name insurance providers. Our locations are open Monday-Friday from 7am to 6pm. Learn more below:


  1. Wisner, Wendy. “Everything You Need to Know About Marriage Counseling.” Talkspace, 11 Mar. 2020, www.talkspace.com/blog/marriage-counseling-guide-couples-therapy.
  2. PsyD., Meaghan Lpc Rice. “What to Expect From Marriage Counseling.” Talkspace, 25 Oct. 2021, www.talkspace.com/blog/what-to-expect-from-marriage-counseling.
  3. Stritof, Sheri. “Does Marriage Counseling Work?” Verywell Mind, Dotdash Media, Inc., 17 Oct. 2021, www.verywellmind.com/does-marriage-counseling-work-2300428.
  4. “About Marriage and Family Therapists.” American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, www.aamft.org/About_AAMFT/About_Marriage_and_Family_Therapists.aspx. Accessed 17 July 2022.
  5. Kirby, Jennifer S., and Donald H. Baucom. “Integrating Dialectical Behavior Therapy and Cognitive-Behavioral Couple Therapy: A Couples Skills Group for Emotion Dysregulation.” Cognitive and Behavioral Practice, vol. 14, no. 4, 2007, pp. 394–405. Crossref, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cbpra.2006.09.006.
  6. Davoodvandi, Maryam, et al. “Examining the Effectiveness of Gottman Couple Therapy on Improving Marital Adjustment and Couples’ Intimacy.” Iranian Journal of Psychiatry, 2018, pp. 135–41. National Library of Medicine, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6037577.
  7. Panganiban, Kimberly. “How Much Does Marriage Counseling Cost?” Choosing Therapy, 6 Aug. 2021, www.choosingtherapy.com/marriage-counseling-cost.
  8. Villines, Contributed By Zawn. “Keys to Choosing a Good Marriage Counselor.” GoodTherapy.Org Therapy Blog, GoodTherapy, LLC., 21 Feb. 2013, www.goodtherapy.org/blog/keys-choosing-marriage-counselor-0221137.

If you suspect that you or someone you love suffers from mental health disorders, contact Athena Care today.

One of our friendly associates will help you get the help you need. Take this first step to feel better and take control. 

(615) 320-1155