Therapist Induced Marital Suicide

Can seeing a therapist actually destroy your marriage rather than repair it? The 1950s is about the time that people really started addressing marital issues and discord in any kind of systematic or institutional way. That’s not to say that pastors and ministers didn’t offer family counseling and moral support, but as an industry – marriage counseling didn’t really exist.

The 1950s really focused on traditional marriage with a focus on gender roles. This was the decade after World War II and woman had a taste of working and being more independent. They left the workforce in droves as soldiers returned home. In the 50s, when a woman divorced, she was usually a divorcee for the rest of her life.

Celebrities divorced in the 50s and remarried (think Marilyn Monroe, Elizabeth Taylor and more), but those were great scandals. Divorce was considered the ultimate personal failure and there was a great deal of social stigma associated with getting a divorce. Marriage counseling often focused on the personality problems of one partner or the other. Sadly to say, that in the 1950s marital violence wasn’t really treated or viewed as a problem by marriage counselors.

During the 70s, ideas of liberation and independence became more popular and marriage therapists began to court the fine line between saving a marriage and saving the individuals in the marriage. In the 80s and 90s, American culture and marriage therapy intertwined. In other words, therapy for marriage became a business and patients became clients.

Described by one psychologist as a time when material greed made this the age of taking care of yourself and not anyone else. That means advice for seeking divorce seemed to climb. Couples whose personal issues impacted their marital issues were encouraged to address their personal issues in lieu of those marriage issues – in other words, if you marriage made you miserable, maybe you needed to separate to determine if the marriage is really what you wanted.

Marriage therapy has come full circle and now it addresses all sides of the issue, but the idea of therapy assisted marital suicide is where marriage counseling got a bad reputation. Be sure to always investigate your marriage counselor and if they are encouraging you to think only of yourself and not of your marriage.

Have you ever known of a marriage that ended because of therapy?

Related Articles:

Divorce is Not an Option

Can Therapy Hurt Your Marriage?

10 Signs That Indicate Your Marriage May Need Therapy

Warning Signs of a Subjective Marriage Counselor

Marriage Education

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About Heather Long

Heather Long is 35 years old and currently lives in Wylie, Texas. She has been a freelance writer for six years. Her husband and she met while working together at America Online over ten years ago. They have a beautiful daughter who just turned five years old. She is learning to read and preparing for kindergarten in the fall. An author of more than 300 articles and 500+ web copy pieces, Heather has also written three books as a ghostwriter. Empty Canoe Publishing accepted a novel of her own. A former horse breeder, Heather used to get most of her exercise outside. In late 2004, early 2005 Heather started studying fitness full time in order to get herself back into shape. Heather worked with a personal trainer for six months and works out regularly. She enjoys shaking up her routine and checking out new exercises. Her current favorites are the treadmill (she walks up to 90 minutes daily) and doing yoga for stretching. She also performs strength training two to three times a week. Her goals include performing in a marathon such as the Walk for Breast Cancer Awareness or Team in Training for Lymphoma research. She enjoys sharing her knowledge and experience through the fitness and marriage blogs.