Most Couples Counseling Does Work

The Register Guard (Eugene, OR), May 2, 2005 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

Most Couples Counseling Does Work

Byline: GUEST VIEWPOINT By John Miller For The Register-Guard

On April 19, The Register Guard published an article from The New York Times with the headline,`Marital counseling may only make things worse." It was an unfortunate headline, because it did not seem to represent what the article was really all about.

The article raised some important issues regarding therapy and how and when it works - and doesn't work. The main thrust of the article was that couples therapy is complex, specialized work that requires skills in empirically validated, effective approaches.

The reporter noted that many practicing therapists are not trained in these proven techniques and lack the skills to do couples therapy. When competent, their therapy is usually helpful and effective.

The question this raises in not whether couples therapy works, but when and how to find a competent therapist. In Oregon, anyone can hang out a shingle and claim to be a `couples therapist.' Some who do this have little or no specialized training in working with couples and families, and may not even have formal education in human services.

Only licensed marriage and family therapists are required to get the specialized training and clinical experience in working with couples and families. This training is rigorous and intense, and requires the professional to take graduate courses in human development, theory, assessment, legal and ethical issues, group dynamics and research.

Specific topics typically covered include domestic violence, human sexuality, child development, counseling diverse populations, psychopathology and substance abuse and addiction. In Oregon, training must also include 600 hours of supervised clinical experience.

After students graduate, a training therapist must accrue 2,000 clinical hours under the close supervision of a qualified supervisor. Only after completing these requirements are training therapists permitted to take a national qualifying exam, which evaluates core knowledge in the field's validated techniques.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Cite this article

Cited article

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

Most Couples Counseling Does Work


Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?