The job title ‘marriage counseling’ summons up some ugly images to some people. Myself included.
Even if I had liked the idea of traditional counseling my spouse back then wouldn’t have gone along. I would have wasted time, money and I really don’t think it would have helped.
I’m not saying marriage counseling hasn’t helped someone. Somewhere. I’m sure it has. But just not in my experience — I don’t know anyone who has actually been helped by it.
Which is why Amy was a bit out of left field for me.
She managed to stop my divorce dead in its tracks and she barely blinked while doing it. What was a major turning point in my life was a run of the mill average day for her.
And it was complete luck I found her.
As it turned out she’s well known in certain circles for this kind of stuff. She did a lot of work repairing relationships after extra-marital affairs and trial separations and I was introduced to her by a friend.
Not knowing who she actually was, I cracked a bad joke about those blood sucking vultures getting rich off the back of failing marriages.
It turned out she used to be one of those vultures.
She used to charge an absolute fortune to consult with couples. Knowing her better now I’m sure she dragged those relationships from the pits but after a few awkward moments as my friend filled me in on who Amy was she told me about her new project.
She’d discovered the flaws with her old method. With traditional counseling, there was only so much time she could spend with a couple. Only so much she could help them (without them paying an actual fortune) and only so much experience she could get from working with each couple.
Then she moved online.
She was able to help more people.
She got a lot more experience than the average counselor.
She was able to drastically lower her prices. No fancy couch and office required.
And I was lucky enough to meet her while she was doing all this.
But even back then when it was still in its infancy it turned my life around.
But, back then, I was too embarrassed to ask for help. I said her project sounded interesting and excused myself.
But before I got out of there she mentioned something which stuck with me.
Do you know how you eat an elephant? One mouthful at a time. We get so flooded with advice from different people when very little of it is actually based on evidence or proper experience.
What we really need is step by step clear instructions on what to actually do.
All this inspirational crap (she actually said worse than crap — she’s usually the sweetest girl in the world but she was passionate about this) is all well and good but we don’t know how to actually apply it to a real relationship in a meaningful way.
A few days later I’d got her number from my friend who’d made the introduction and the rest… well, let’s just say I have a date with my wife tonight.