The New York Times show how most couples need relationship counseling but are in denial.
Tara Parker-Pope writes (excerpt):
“You don’t wait to see the dentist until something hurts — you go for checkups on a regular basis,” said James V. Córdova, an associate professor of psychology at Clark University in Worcester, Mass., who wrote “The Marriage Checkup” (Jason Aronson, 2009). “That’s the model we’re testing. If people were to bring their marriages in for a checkup on an annual basis, would that provide the same sort of benefit that a physical health checkup would provide?”
Although Dr. Córdova and colleagues are still tallying the data, preliminary findings show that couples who take part in the program do experience improvements in marital quality. By working with couples before they are unhappy, the checkup identifies potentially “corrosive” behaviors and helps couples make small changes in communication style before their problems spiral out of control. (Typical problems include lack of time for sex and blaming a partner for the stresses of child rearing.)