Paul F. Schmidt, Ph.D.
Is it a good idea if Dr. Schmidt sees both of us?
It won’t happen unless:
1. The goals of all counseling are consistent with each other, and with his values.
2. All parties have considered the pros and cons below and given their permission:
Pros: 1. He knows the background already.
2. He gets added perspective on each from the other’s point of view.
3. He is perhaps more easily trusted than a stranger to work with the spouse.
4. There’s no need to call another therapist to stay up with what’s going on.
5. He is more knowledgeable and more easily trusted to be the marriage counselor.
6. It’s easier for us to know in our guts that the other’s counselor is pro-marital.
Cons: 1. We will usually be tempted to use our own sessions more to set him up to change the other than to work on ourselves.
2. We are more likely to undermine each other’s confidence in him by quoting him inaccurately as an authority or an endorser
of our actions.
3. Worst of all, if our goals or personalities become incompatible, they will inevitably sabotage or undermine each other’s therapies,
and if we are seeing the same therapist, we will be in an ideal position to do so. Therefore,
4. He may end up having to transfer two of the three clients out (husband, wife, marriage).
If and when he is asked to choose which client he will stay with, priority goes to (starting with the most important factor):
The one who first came to see him individually
The one whose agenda is more pro-marital
The one who is working harder at change and personal growth
The one who would not have such a hard time starting up with someone else
So, he is trusting you to tell him what you want him to do here.
For Personal and Family Integrity www.mynewlife.com Your Alternative to Managed Care