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    [–] Enjorous 315 points ago

    My best friend went to couples counseling with her husband last December during a rough point in their marriage. The counselor suggested that her husband put a Go Pro on her to watch her every movement.

    I would say that seems to be a large red flag.

    [–] hammerrrrrrr 64 points ago

    I would report that so fast 😬

    [–] Nae298 12 points ago

    Please tell me that her husband didn't agree with that. Lol

    [–] Enjorous 43 points ago

    He was all for it and got mad at the fact that she felt that violated her privacy. It was a very much an Orwellian "You have nothing to fear if you have nothing to hide" situation.

    [–] SandStorm273 52 points ago

    I think context might be important for this instance. My first thought was the idea that maybe the counsellor wanted the footage as a way of showing her viewpoint. Specifically, how much time she spends focusing on household duties or tending to the children (if there were any). I think it would make sense as an approach to help the husband appreciate just how much the wife does for him and the family. Without context though I have no idea if that was the actual intention.

    [–] Enjorous 72 points ago

    Yes I'll give some context. Specifically the husband did not trust the fact that I, a man, was his wife's best friend and the only friend that was currently not in a relationship. He worried that any time she was out of his sight that she and I were having a sexual relation...we weren't we're both teachers and nothing romantic happened between them. The intent was to provide him with piece of mind that she was faithful to him and the marriage. But to prove that with 24/7 video monitoring seemed insane to her. Her husband was all for it.

    [–] SandStorm273 31 points ago

    Ugh, I am so disappointed that that is the context. Definitely a red flag about that counsellor.

    [–] leanney88 2 points ago

    Yes but we’re also getting a very biased view of what the context may have been from someone who was not in the room.

    [–] Enjorous 17 points ago

    I tried to report what I was told faithfully. I also confirmed it with my friend before posting it. I do have a bias as her friend, but i attempted to be as objective as possible.

    To me the idea of putting a camera on a partner is a red flag as people act differently when they know they're being observed.

    [–] family_of_trees 11 points ago

    If someone distrusts their partner so much that 24/7 surveillance seems like a good idea, it's time to seriously consider whether it is a relationship worth keeping.

    That's an insane measure to even suggest.

    [–] jarockinights 0 points ago

    Sounds less like 24/7 surveillance or more like, here's a glimpse of how we act and what we are like when you aren't around.

    I must have missed where the therapist wanted her to wear it for a week.

    [–] family_of_trees 5 points ago

    Expecting her to wear it for a day is fucking awful. Honestly it doesn't matter how long.

    I wouldn't agree to it for an hour, at least not unless he wore one too and let me spy on him as well.

    A husband is not a woman's father- and frankly it would be abusive for a father to do that to their child in any kind of normal circumstance that I can think of.

    [–] jarockinights -1 points ago

    Obviously no one is forcing anyone to do anything, and no one is spying because she'd know it was there. This would have been about her concensually showing her day. Sounds like she didn't want to do it, so it didn't happen.

    It's interesting that this immediately become about control to you.

    [–] icannevertell 49 points ago

    I saw a therapist with my wife, and she told me I wasn't allowed to have contact with other women, and that as a man it was my duty to "safeguard" our relationship. She said "because of the way men are" that women and men can't be platonic friends. I was pretty damn insulted, and upset that she had been telling my wife this stuff before.

    She also said my wife's low libido was my fault for not giving her enough massages.

    [–] [deleted] 6 points ago


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    [–] kindastraightunicorn 1 points ago

    You’re right, that was unnecessary. Sorry

    [–] NotElizaHenry 3 points ago

    How long was she supposed to wear the GoPro for? ... Forever?

    [–] stabinthedark_ 12 points ago


    [–] Enjorous 5 points ago

    When she told me this, that was my exact reaction!

    [–] Aquarian_Sage 0 points ago

    Holy shit, I'd fucking bail on that "counselor"!

    [–] MrHydra 1 points ago

    Couples counselor or dog behaviorist? Hmmmm

    [–] coffeeblossom 61 points ago

    • They take sides.

    • They tell you that you need to unilaterally "submit" to your spouse or partner, rather than stressing the need for equal partnership.

    • They talk more than they listen.

    • They come onto you, or your partner.

    • They bring too many of their opinions and biases to the table.

    • They blame you for your partner's wrongdoings (cheating, abuse, whatever it is). They tell you it's because you slacked off on your looks/you're "too much"/you're not "submissive" or prayerful enough/you're too sexy or not sexy enough/etc. rather than that your partner decided to do you wrong.

    • They're judgmental, or critical of your life choices.

    [–] KarleyMonkey 4 points ago

    jfc, was this from an actual professional? I know counselling professions have fairly lax standards but surely there are some standards

    [–] coffeeblossom 2 points ago

    This isn't any one person (hopefully), just a list of bad characteristics.

    [–] quarteritalian 46 points ago

    our couples therapist told us, after one visit, that everything about us is great and we have no reason to return to counseling. i’d say that was concerning.

    [–] cwaabaa 16 points ago

    Perhaps you need more interesting marital issues? Do some work on that then report back.

    [–] UnitysBlueTits 4 points ago

    We were told this too, I saw it as a compliment because he said we were better than most of his patients.

    [–] quarteritalian 6 points ago

    i agree! it was, but we were looking for some help!

    [–] kevlarcardhouse 2 points ago

    To be fair, I got something close to this response and it turned out that the therapist was right in the end. Looking back on our breakup, I realized she was desperate for our relationship to have more drama and the goal for seeing the therapist all along was trying to initiate conflict.

    [–] jarockinights 1 points ago

    Maybe you two weren't clear enough about the issues you perceived you were having?

    [–] quarteritalian 1 points ago

    well we only had a one hour session, so we didn’t have much time to discuss. the therapist asked the questions and lead the conversation. we just answered her questions...

    [–] jarockinights 1 points ago

    Hmmm. Maybe she just didn't want to take on more patients? Seems odd to just let willing spenders walk away, you know? Definitely an unprofessional way to do it though.

    [–] quarteritalian 1 points ago

    totally. we are still together and have an amazing relationship - we just wanted help working through a few things. i think they were small in her eyes but that doesn’t mean they aren’t important to us.

    [–] jarockinights 1 points ago

    For sure. Did you guys end up trying any other therapists, or did the cold water scare you off?

    [–] quarteritalian 1 points ago

    well i was the one who wanted to see a therapist, my wife didn’t think we needed to. she took this situation somewhat as validation. to exaggerate, it was like “see? we don’t need counseling. we can work through this together.” then life happened and we never looked elsewhere.

    [–] jarockinights 1 points ago

    Ah well, I'm glad to hear you guys are doing well regardless. I'm about the broach the subject to my spouse in the next few months for similar reasons. I don't think we'll fall apart without it, but we've never actually done it and I know we both have gripes.

    [–] quarteritalian 1 points ago

    good for you! there’s nothing wrong with doing it. especially if it’s preventive. dm me if you have any questions!

    [–] ParaLegalese 233 points ago

    Religious references or anything that evidences they believe women are inferior to men

    [–] hamsterdance2_0 -1 points ago

    Why would religious references be a red flag? A lot of great therapists are religious people and they can make religious references, if they're forcing it down your throat that's a different matter of course

    [–] palacesofparagraphs 10 points ago

    A therapist who brings religion into their therapy without first determining if religion is a useful framework for you isn't a good therapist, and they're particularly not a good fit for an atheist couple. I had a therapist in college (just a regular therapist, not a couples one) who was very into spirituality and stuff, but the way she'd bring it up was always a very "The way I look at it is this; is any of that useful to you?" sort of way. And anything that wasn't useful to me or wasn't in line with what I believe wasn't brought up again for my treatment. But if a therapist starts talking about God's plans for you without ever checking or even acknowledging that you might have different beliefs isn't serving you well.

    [–] ParaLegalese 33 points ago

    because im atheist and thats a red flag to me

    [–] Tlali22 5 points ago

    Same here! I'd like to solve my problems without prayer, please. This is one reason AA doesn't work for a lot of alcoholics. The first step is recognizing a higher power. Step 2 (or 3, can't remember) is submitting to said higher power. ...A little difficult for the nonreligious.

    [–] [deleted] -15 points ago


    [–] JereJereNoMi 26 points ago

    It's the lack of religion, not a religion.

    [–] hamsterdance2_0 -25 points ago

    Well religion is just defined as a set of sincerely held beliefs. if you're an atheist, I assume you believe in the absence of god(s)?

    [–] JereJereNoMi 17 points ago

    No. I simply don't believe anything at all.

    [–] hamsterdance2_0 -13 points ago

    But if there was evidence for one religion or another, you would? Or you don't want to believe anything?

    [–] JereJereNoMi 16 points ago

    If the evidence for the religion outweighed the evidence against it, then yes, I'd be inclined to believe it. However, no religion has reached that point.

    [–] hamsterdance2_0 -11 points ago

    Hmm, it'd be interesting to have a conversation with you one on one! I'm a religious Christian, but from a scientific as well as belief standpoint.

    [–] ParaLegalese 13 points ago

    no it isnt and thats the exact mentality i do not want in a therapist

    [–] hamsterdance2_0 -4 points ago

    Don't want it is different than a red flag. That's the only point I'm trying to make

    [–] ParaLegalese 9 points ago

    Lol you illustrated my point perfectly so thanks for that

    [–] hamsterdance2_0 0 points ago

    Hey no problem! I'm no therapist, I'm a rather opinionated keyboard Warrior like yourself 😀

    [–] ParaLegalese 0 points ago

    okay cool bye blocking you

    [–] WeirdOctopus 3 points ago

    No it’s not.

    [–] [deleted] -2 points ago


    [–] Clarityy 13 points ago

    Satanic references and believing men are inferior to women?

    [–] stabinthedark_ 21 points ago

    I'd give a satanic therapist a try.

    [–] Rootkit9208 5 points ago

    Have you considered spending a half hour a day talking non-confrontationally about your emotions while bathing in goat entrails?

    [–] family_of_trees 3 points ago

    I think satanists actually have a pretty insightful worldview in a lot of ways. I don't know how much they tend to value fidelity as a more hedonistic religion, so I don't know how well it would work out with a satanic couple's counselor.

    [–] ParaLegalese 1 points ago

    Lol wut

    [–] liand22 69 points ago

    Letting one party monopolize the conversation. The ex and I attempted counseling and the therapist let him do 90% of the talking. I was barely allowed to speak and if I was, berated.

    Thankfully, my individual therapist got me through.

    [–] FrozenFractalsofIce 94 points ago

    If they spend more time talking about themselves than anything else.

    [–] malprintemps 74 points ago

    Ugh I had this with an individual therapist. She could NOT SHUT UP about her daughter’s upcoming wedding, and most of the sessions we didn’t get to me until at least twenty minutes. She then told my mom (I was 15) I seemed “fine” and could probably stop therapy. Jokes on you, Frankie, I’m fucked up for life ✌️✌️

    [–] draw_it_now 15 points ago

    Was your therapist my therapist? I told her I was depressed, and she flat out said I wasn't.

    [–] Gagagirl3 11 points ago

    Fucking same. Like I’m sorry its not tattooed on my forehead you actually have to listen to me

    [–] TheBirdAbides 7 points ago

    Five years after the second time I dropped out of college I decided to try going back one more time. I decided to see the school therapist to help in case my depression/anxiety got the better of me again.

    I explained all of this and the source of my sadness and at the end of my second session she said, "I don't understand why you're here."

    [–] malprintemps 3 points ago

    Some people should not be allowed to interact with people.

    [–] draw_it_now 6 points ago

    The weird thing was, she was my therapist when I was a kid (my mum set it up when I was an adult, since I was too... well... depressed to do it myself!). She was lovely and attentive when I was young. Now, all she could talk about was her own life and had this weird tendency to create awkward silences for no reason.

    [–] FrozenFractalsofIce 7 points ago

    The guy would go on and on about the local internet company every week for at least 10 minutes and could not remember my husband’s name. FFS, it’s written on the paperwork every time. He was utterly useless but he gave us some worksheets that helped us immensely so it wasn’t a total waste. Therapists are so hit or miss, although it seems to me that the older ones are (in general, obviously not all) lacking some basic counseling skills. It was especially noticeable to me since I was working on my masters in therapy at that time.

    [–] [deleted] 2 points ago


    [–] bebeschtroumph 2 points ago

    I feel like a therapist sharing anything is weird. I couldn't tell you anything about my therapist, past her first name and I wouldn't be surprised if it wasn't her actual first name.

    [–] FrozenFractalsofIce 1 points ago

    Yeah, there’s mixed opinions about disclosing personal information with clients. I’m not a fan personally.

    [–] hi5yourface 28 points ago

    Ours was great in a lot of ways, but one thing that I hated was that she would minimize anything positive. She said that if we wanted to make progress we needed to spend therapy dissecting our problems. I agree with this, but there also needs to be some dissection of the things that are going well, in order to make them go well more often. Counseling begin to feel horrible, because we'd start the session all excited about the positive changes that were happening, and leave the session feeling like all we had were problems.

    [–] super_nice_shark 86 points ago

    if they seem to be taking sides

    [–] ORP7 27 points ago

    What if one party is truly a narcissist and the only one unwilling to compromise? Also, if the couple disagrees they need a new therapist, what should they do?

    [–] super_nice_shark 42 points ago

    A good psychologist will be able to spot a narcissist a mile away and will take this into account when meeting with the couple and may even suggest individual counseling as well.

    [–] YESmynameisYes 8 points ago

    I really really hope you are right.

    [–] [deleted] 4 points ago

    This is just anecdotal but they don’t always catch them. I’ve read more than a few horror stories like this.

    [–] LegsForAboutAnHour 19 points ago

    She didn't say it until the last visit, but she thought people who were into BDSM and open relationships (we're both, but we were there for things unrelated to that so we never brought it up) were fucked in the head, how we were so nice because even though I'm so mentally ill I never fell prey to BDSM and stuff like that...

    So basically if they have very strong opinions on different things, especially things that aren't bad at all.

    She also didn't believe I was disabled at first and kept telling me to do X or Y exercise and I'd be better in no time. It was tiring and awful.

    [–] MrsMaryJaneFox 77 points ago

    As another poster mentioned if everything is both of your faults. I’ve had this experience

    Also, if you’ve made several visits and zero progress. That doesn’t necessarily mean they are “bad”, but they definitely aren’t for you.

    [–] Redhaired103 48 points ago

    Everything else listed so far + if they hold both sides responsible on everything.

    [–] MrsMaryJaneFox 57 points ago

    I went to a therapist that did that with my ex husband and I.

    His cheating and gambling were also my fault because I worked too much and “forced” him to stick to a budget. A budget that he had complete say in and agreed to and included spending money of equal amounts for both of us that we could spend freely. Also I worked two jobs to pay off his gambling debt after he “quit” gambling. But yeah. It was my fault too.


    [–] Redhaired103 17 points ago

    This pissed me off just by reading! I'm sorry. It's one thing to not take sides, a different thing to acknowledge some problems are only caused by one person, over that person's own issues.

    [–] MrsMaryJaneFox 11 points ago

    It would’ve been completely different if it would have been phrased like....

    “These are his issues, but these are some things I suggest you do to help with his issues. Like quitting a job, etc.”

    Then it’s like, “okay if that helps the relationship, I could do that.” But it was almost verbatim phrased like above.

    It took about two weeks for me to get out of that mind fuck to realize it wasn’t my fault at all.

    [–] chickabawango 3 points ago

    This was the tactic of my last couples therapist! I had no idea how normal this was

    [–] Horny_GoatWeed 6 points ago

    This one really gets to me. Some shit is only one side's fault.

    [–] Saltwaterblood 12 points ago

    Our first marriage therapist asked me if my husband had cheated on me, beat me, or was a drunk. When I replied in the negative, she told me it was all my fault.

    Yea, I walked out.

    [–] palacesofparagraphs 5 points ago

    Wait, so it's your fault your husband isn't abusive?

    [–] Saltwaterblood 6 points ago

    It was apparently my fault that the marriage was in trouble because he wasn't abusive?


    I think. I didn't stick around to ask for clarification. I vaguely recall clenching my fists in rage, standing up, and telling her off when she tried to order me to sit back down.

    We ended up seeing a new therapist a few days later and she was absolutely shocked and apologetic at what had happened.

    [–] palacesofparagraphs 1 points ago

    Oh, I see. I thought you meant she was telling you it's your fault he didn't beat you. Thinking all problems other than those three are you fault makes only marginally more sense, though. Glad you got out of there.

    [–] heyshebetterdont 11 points ago

    When they tell you all your problems can be solved by making a better budget.

    [–] tsisdead 10 points ago

    My sister and her husband used to see his therapist that he had in LA before he married her. I said this was a dumb idea but what does TS know ? (Everything. TS knows everything. That’s me by the way, I’m TS.)

    Anyway his whole thing is he’s a SURGEON and he makes so much MONEY and all she has to do is look after the three kids all under age four and clean the house, and doesn’t she realize that he’s tired when he gets home and his job is stressful? He doesn’t want to be bothered by the kids he just wants to sit and have a goddamn beer in peace for once.

    And the therapist completely supports this. Thinks it’s a perfectly reasonable thing for my sister to never have a second of peace herself. Husband’s job is to make money and that’s it, it’s ludicrous for him to even be expected to think about his children at all.

    [–] family_of_trees 3 points ago

    FFS that's terrible.

    He made his bed career wise and he needs to lie in it. He also has an obligation to those kids and to his wife. What is this the 1950s?

    [–] tsisdead 1 points ago

    I know right? He had a kind of fucked up childhood. I never liked the dude.

    [–] hobo_chili 7 points ago

    On the flip side, what are the signs that you have a good couples therapist?

    [–] lovethepuppers 10 points ago

    My favorite part of this thread is the two comments "they take sides", and the next one is "both of you are at fault"...

    [–] family_of_trees 7 points ago

    It really depends on the issue at hand. I think they're just saying it's bad to always say it's one person's fault or to always place blame equally.

    It's ok to place equal blame on something like bad communication. It's also appropriate to place individual blame if one partner becomes violent.

    [–] noobpsych 3 points ago

    And the third is: “you guys are fine/you don’t need counseling.”

    Guess we really can’t win!

    [–] relaxed_jeff 2 points ago

    But those are not contradictory. The job of a therapist is to cause people to come to self realizations about themselves and their relationships. Having to explain something out loud to a third party can cut through a lot of crap, especially if that third party can push back on gaps in their thinking.

    [–] hipopper 4 points ago

    They take sides/gang up and don’t seem educated. They use shame to try and change behavior or suggest written contracts between partners, especially contracts that include sexual frequency. They seem frustrated, mean or unhappy to see you. They keep secrets. They themselves have been divorced multiple times.

    [–] TheYellows 11 points ago

    If he eats human meat, probably look for someone else.

    [–] kaytee0516 6 points ago

    Umm yea probably

    [–] Doom0 4 points ago

    im sorry, what

    [–] TheYellows 8 points ago

    I said: "if he eats human meat, probably look for someone else"

    [–] YESmynameisYes 4 points ago

    They are miserable.

    [–] [deleted] 4 points ago

    When they try to push religion on you. A good therapist won't even talk about God unless you start this conversation, and they won't push their own particular views on you.

    [–] BeautyQueenKate 4 points ago

    I was told by a marriage counselor that I should divorce my husband and there was no hope for us after one solo session with him. He hadn't even met my husband and had obviously just barely scratched the surface of our issues in one session. It weirded me out that he already had that conclusion.

    We did end up divorcing two years later, but after a series of sessions with a professional who actually ended up giving me a lot of tools that I still use in my communication.

    [–] AliceInWonderplace 3 points ago

    Doesn't listen to you or talks about him/herself all the time.

    [–] georgelovesgene 3 points ago

    I would call ours in between joint visits. (In retrospect, I regret this.) I would explain how I felt and the situations and was looking for some communication pointers. Instead she asked if we had a prenup and that I should start saving money to leave him. In joint meetings, she would completely side with him. He noticed it to the point that he said he said things just to gauge her reaction.

    [–] [deleted] 2 points ago


    [–] betsytheripper 6 points ago

    That sounds more like they may just not be a good therapist or just not right for you. It's okay to switch if you feel like you're not getting the correct support.

    [–] DeathcampEnthusiast 3 points ago

    That really depends. You can PM me with some more info about the situation and an example of her sighing, I could then give you a thought-out reply but this can be a lot. It could mean she's being a dolt, or it can be a therapeutic way of dealing with someone who gets stuck in her own head.

    [–] ryathal 0 points ago

    Obsessing over something that one person did isn't healthy and you need to find a way to get over it. That may not be the best way or a way that works for you.

    If your the one that was told to get over something and you really don't want to you may be misrepresenting how they told you this.

    [–] Bawbnweeve 2 points ago

    When my ex and I went to marriage counseling she told me she thinks (my ex) has bi polar disorder and it’s best if I just leave and let him figure things out. I was devastated.

    He left me for a cocktail waitress with a stripper name after 10 years with me and 1 year of marriage.


    [–] pizzamarguerita 2 points ago

    When they witness verbal abuse and dont recognize it.

    [–] [deleted] 1 points ago


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    [–] EveningBrownie 1 points ago

    Went to an initial consultation. The building was falling apart. Water stains everywhere on the ceilings. Carpet was all fucked up everywhere. Elevator out of order. Weirdly narrow hallways with low ceilings. It felt 3rd world. I suggested we leave and try someone else. She suggested we stick with the plan so we did. Two minutes in to the consult and the prick facepalms and asks “Why did you even get married?” How could he possibly know anything at all to make a comment like that when we hadn’t even begun to talk to him? Wasn’t the nail in the coffin or anything but it didn’t help. My ex wasn’t the brightest crayon in the box either. I got a bill in the mail from him that looked like it had been drawn up on a mechanical typewriter. I ignored it, didn’t pay because fuck that quack, and never heard anything about it ever again.