What is the Difference Between Couples Therapy, Couples Counseling, and Marriage Counseling?

What is the Difference Between Couples Therapy, Couples Counseling, and Marriage Counseling?

What is the Difference Between Couples Therapy, Couples Counseling, and Marriage Counseling? 2560 1440 Long Island Counseling Services

If your relationship runs into challenges, it is helpful to speak to someone that is trained to address those challenges. On Long Island, that means speaking with a therapist that has experience working with all different types of couples and partnerships, supporting both clients, with knowledge in how to help resolve conflict, build trust, and improve communication.

Yet, for couples that are seeking out relationship help, it’s not uncommon to run into many different terms that may make it harder for you to find someone that is able to work with your relationship and your needs. Is there a difference between these terms?

Common Terminology in the Relationship Therapy World

There is a lot of different terminology out there for professional relationship help. Some of the most common include:

  • Couples Therapy
  • Couples Counseling
  • Marriage Counseling/Therapy
  • Relationship Counseling/Therapy

Do these different terms refer to different techniques?

Most of the time: no.

Couples counseling is the blanket term for any treatment you receive as a couple. It encompasses every approach, and refers to essentially any type of partnership – even one where both partners are not married, and in theory, the couple may not even be together.

Most other terms also refer to this same thing. Marriage counseling is the same as couples counseling, but is not used as often since not all partners are married and many are in non-traditional relationships. Relationship counseling similarly can be for any couple, and the term itself covers every type of relationship there is.

Couples therapy, however, as well as similar terms like “relationship therapy,” may have a slightly more specific meaning. Though it can be used interchangeably with couples counseling, couples therapy tends to be a bit more structured. There are many extensively researched therapies designed to address relationship issues, and because they are more structured, sometimes they are referred to as “therapy.”

However, like many words, the differences between them are vague and they are often used to mean the same thing. In addition, not everyone benefits from a structured form of therapy, and most therapists can provide both structured and unstructured (therapy or counseling) depending on the client needs.

Get Help for Your Partnership at Long Island Counseling Services

No matter what type of relationship you’re in or what your struggles currently are, Long Island Counseling Services is available to provide you with the support, guidance, and clarity that you need to grow within your relationship. Start the process today by giving us a call or filling out our online form, and one of our therapists will be in touch to talk to you about our services.