Discernment Counseling


Are you or your spouse talking about divorce and uncertain about the right decision? ICFT offers discernment counseling as a way to help couples to look at their options before making a final decision about divorce. It is common to have a "leaning in" partner who wants to preserve and repair the relationship, while the other partner is "leaning out" and wants to end it.

The goal of discernment counseling is not to solve the problems in the relationship, but to figure out whether the problems can be solved. This process is short term and mainly involves one to one conversations between the therapist and each partner for a better understanding about what happened to the marriage and each partner's part in the struggles.

There are three paths that are discussed in discernment counseling. Path 1 is for the marriage to remain the same with no change. Path 2 is for ending the marriage. Path 3 is to make a decision to reconcile and enter into couple's counseling.

Here's what Discernment Counseling offers you:

  • More clarity and confidence in your decision about the future of your marriage
  • More understanding about your marriage and the part each of you has played in the problems
  • A game plan for change if you decide to work on the marriage
  • A set of learnings that you can carry with you into future relationships if you end this one, and a better chance to be good co-parents if you have children

Surveys find that up to 40% of divorced people have regrets about their divorce decision; often because they feel they (and their partner) did not try hard enough to make the marriage work. In this brief counseling service, you will be supported, honored for where you are, and asked to look at what you would need to change in yourself to have a healthy relationship —whether in this relationship or in a future one. 

Couples who go through Discernment Counseling often come out the other end more settled and confident about their next steps, whether to make one last all-out effort in couples therapy to restore their marriage to health, or to move forward with ending their marriage. 

We understand that the current state of your marriage is not what you were aiming for when you got married. If you find yourself in a marriage that may be ending, please consider discernment counseling first. 


For answers to frequently asked questions, click here.

For additional information on how to get started, click here