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If you are in an unhealthy marriage we highly recommend you consider seeking professional assistance from a marriage therapist. Finding the right marital therapist for you and your spouse is going to take some time and effort on your part.

We highly recommend that you ask potential therapists the following five questions suggested by Bill Doherty in a presentation at the 1999 Smartmarriages conference:

1. "Can you describe your background or training in marital therapy?" If the therapist is self-taught or workshop-trained, and can't point to formal supervised training in this work, then consider going elsewhere.

2. "What is your attitude toward salvaging a troubled marriage versus helping couples break up?" If the therapist says he or she is "neutral," or "I don't try to save marriage, I try to help people," look elsewhere.

3. "What is your approach when one partner is seriously considering ending the marriage and the other wants to save it?" If the therapist responds by focusing only on helping each person clarify their personal feelings and decisions, consider looking elsewhere.

4. "What percentage of your practice is marital therapy?" Avoid therapists who do mostly individual therapy.

5. "Of the couples you treat, what percentage would you say work out enough of their problems to stay married with a reasonable amount of satisfaction?

In addition we recommend that you also ask the following six questions:

1. How much do you charge per session and do you accept insurance?

2. On average how many sessions do you have with a couple?

3. How do you view your role as a therapist in a session?

4. What are your expectations of us as clients?

5. What are your goals as a therapist when you are working with clients?

6. Briefly describe what we can expect to get out of therapy sessions with you.

Once you are on your road to recovery we recommend you take some of the marriage education courses to gain additional relationship skills and knowledge that will help you continue to sustain a healthy marriage. We also recommend you continue taking refresher courses throughout the rest of your life in order to decrease the chances that you will ever find yourself in this position again.

If you are a victim of domestic violence we highly recommend you seek immediate professional assistance.

The following books can help you develop the skills and knowledge to form and sustain a healthy marriage.

Dr. Gottman tells you how to recognize attitudes that doom a marriage -- contempt, criticism, defensiveness, and stonewalling -- and provides practical exercises, quizzes, tips, and techniques that will help you understand and make the most of your relationship.

Michele Weiner Davis outlines a realistic, solution-oriented seven-step program for managing marital problems. Couples can greatly improve their relationships by implementing these steps.

Personal and professional friendships between men and women have become so prevalent and accepted that, according to Glass, even "good" people in "good" marriages can be swept away in a riptide of emotional intimacy more potent than sheer sexual attraction. 

Read this book so that you don't ever have to experience the intense pain and misery associated with infidelity.

In this groundbreaking guide to the physiology and psychology of lasting love, Dr. Pat Love reveals that love has normal, predictable stages that include highs and lows, and that many couples mistake the lows for the end of love.

Through a series of in-depth quizzes, checklists, and exercises, similar to the ones he uses in his workshops, Gottman provides the framework for coping with differences and strengthening your marriage.

The Sex-Starved Marriage offers candid and sensible counsel for couples with mismatched libidos. In addition it offers practical advice to improve your relationship.

A powerful 5 step program designed to help you strengthen relationships.

Based on more than seventeen years of research and counseling, Dr. Stanley offers practical strategies for guarding against marital discontent and infidelity.

This book is based on the widely acclaimed PREP® (Prevention and Relationship Enhancement Program) approach. Groundbreaking studies have found that couples can use the strategies of this approach to handle conflict more constructively, protect their happiness, and reduce the odds of breaking up.

With 12 Hours to a Great Marriage, you can discover the simple, effective strategies that have helped thousands of couples— happily married, having issues, or planning to marry— to develop and protect their love, easily and at your own pace.

This book helps couples pinpoint hidden marital problems and take positive steps to stay close and connected every day.

This book is organized around ten dates that couples will experience to learn five basic skills and five advanced skills to revitalize their marriages.

All serious couples reach a point where they feel frustrated, stuck, bored, disillusioned, and misunderstood. But now, drawing on over fifty years of research in marital and family relationships, Dr. Larson provides helpful and easy-to-use quizzes, self-tests, and personal assessments that reveal why you're feeling this way, explain the underlying issues, and provide solutions to specific issues and problems.

This book teaches the relationship skills and knowledge found in the PAIRS marriage education program.

Hot Monogamy includes a nine-step program to keep the physical intimacy aspect of your relationship mutually satisfying and healthy.

TIME FOR A BETTER MARRIAGE shows couples how to encourage each other, resolve conflict, communicate effectively, maintain equality in the marriage relationship, and make better choices.

Husband and wife team, Barry and Emily McCarthy share clear, helpful guidelines for creating a healthy marriage and reveal the strategies, skills, and attitudes that can help prevent disappointment, resentment, and alienation from entering the relationship.

In The Five Love Languages, Dr. Gary Chapman talks about how different people express love in different ways. Some people are verbal, expressing their love in words. Others may never speak their affection, yet they show it by the things they do.

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The National Healthy Marriage Institute LLC (NHMI) does not examine, determine or warrant the competence of any of the products or services listed in this website. Use of this website to locate products and services is completely voluntary and will not result in any liability against the NHMI. In no event shall the NHMI be liable for damages to any user of the website for the voluntary selection of any of the products and services listed in the website, for the services provided by any service provider listed herein, or for any other damages which may occur. The NHMI cannot and does not provide any warranties related to the information contained in or resulting services from the products and services that are linked to from this website.