Not to be confused with marriage therapy, where partners make relationship goals together;
this is a specific time for couples to investigate their marriage and potential options in a safe
environment. Partners in troubled marriages can determine if they want to give it one last try
or get a divorce.
This is a short-term intensive process lasting 1-5 sessions.
Utilizing the tool of Discernment Counseling, the partners are taking an appropriate length of
time to ‘cool off’ and make life changing decisions from a rational perspective rather than
emotional chaos. Conversations regarding divorce within partnerships are often generated
through an incident, anger, frustration, and fatigue. This counseling is allowing the partners a
safe conversation(s) regarding their future together.
The discernment process helps the couple focus on three potential paths:
Path One: Status quo- the relationship stays as it has been, this may mean accepting chronic
chaos and conflict.
Path Two: Separation or divorce.
Path Three: Six-month commitment to couples therapy with the prospect of divorce off the
table, after which they can decide whether to stay or leave.
Couples that do decide to divorce, enter the process with a better understanding of themselves
and each other and the intended goals. They have thought through the advantages and
disadvantages of staying together or in obtaining a divorce. They proceed down the path of
choice, most likely, with less interpersonal conflict and better sense of acceptance of a joint
decision. Discernment counseling may be the first step in healing as the partners use their own
voice and listen to the voice of their partner in a calm, safe environment.
Timeline for Discernment Counseling
1.) Initial Intake: Two hour meeting including assessment and evaluation ($375)
2.) Discernment Sessions: Three 90 minute sessions ($300 each session)
3.) Ongoing 60 minute sessions as needed. ($175 each session)