During discernment counseling, I will guide both partners to a consensus on whether they would benefit from working on their marriage via therapy, or if the union is irreparable and divorce would be best for both parties. Having an objective professional’s aid in the decision helps to look at the situation logically, and offer comfort and confidence in that the correct decision has been made.
Many couples agonize over the thought of divorce and therefore stay in an unhappy marriage simply to avoid the turmoil. However, staying in an unhappy marriage that causes misery is no better. Consequently, they often wonder whether they should have committed to the divorce when they had a chance.
Sitting and wondering will do no good – making a decision is crucial. It is also the first step in the rest of your journey, regardless of which path you collectively decide to make. Almost invariably, once you go through discernment counseling, you do not either get divorced or go back to your old life. You either get divorced or commit to actively working on your marriage and making significant changes. It is simply the first step in a larger path.
While emotional well-being and making the best possible life decision are the most important factors in the decision to stay together or separate, discernment counseling may also save the couple money. If the decision is made to go straight to divorce, instead of seeking marital therapy and then getting divorced, thousands of dollars are likely to be saved. However, this is hardly the incentive, and discernment counselors will always suggest the option that they assess to be correct for the couple, which sometimes is marital counseling.