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Discussion Starter #1
Please help. I'm having my first MC session in a few days and I need suggestion whether I should choose a male or female counselor. I want to change it now so it's not awkward to change later.

My problem is that my husband does NOT give me any respect. He can raise his voice, yell, curse, call me names (F,S, W, B...you name it), uses bad words whenever he wants or any reason. I told him it's not right since our child is 2 yr old now and that it hurts my feelings and self esteem alot. He claims that I make him mad and when he's mad he can said whatever. He even mention divorce a few times. I NEVER call him name once. He is a doctor and I'm also a professional so this is not something we are accustomed to. He does not act like this with anyone, his friends, co-worker, family, but me. He admits he's workaholic, stubborn, egocentric, moody and has problem communication but he says "that's how I'm if you don't like it, leave. I'm the most successful amongs my friends" (he equates success to how much money he makes.)

I always give in to him times after times so he does not respect me at all. Plus, we went thru a lot like my mom passed away, then our first born passed, then I become totally dependent on him financially when my baby is born (now is 2). everytime things happened, my self esteem and confident got lower and lower and I was vulnerable. He took advantage and took me for granted that I'm always here no matter how he treats me. I'm sensitive and not very strong minded.

I still love my husband and wants to be with him as long as he treats me right with respect. I don't know how to do it so I'm going to counselor right now. Someone said you can't change a person but you can change yourself to cause a positive response from him. I will give it be try before I think about the D word.
Anyone with experience of counseling please help... Give me any advice you can and also please tell me with my situation, a male of female counselor would be more helpful...

Very appreciated,
 

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It depends.
It should definitely be one you are both comfortable with.

The woman may see your point of view better, but the man may understand your husband better.

Your husband has ego issues. His career is a cover for his insecurities. He is likely fearful of something which is coming out in anger.

I think IC would benefit him as well, but he does not sound like he would be open to it.
 

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I have seen 2 male counselors in the past because I felt I would be understood more. Unfortunately, I never felt very comfortable with them. I agree with Blue. You will know after the first session- go with your gut. I just began to see a new therapist who is female and I was surprisingly comfortable there. I had some anxiety about feeling social opposition, but my fear was unfounded (thusfar). It's a crapshoot. Try one and see. I don't think it matters much which sex they are- it's about their skills and candor as far as I'm concerned.

Good luck
 

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Don't anticipate based on gender what your experience will be like.

My marriage counselor was female and I expected an hour of being bashed by two women (and paying for the priviledge). My wife expected 100% support from the marriage counselor.

Turns out the MS saw my point of view on a lot of things and supported me and had to dope-slap my wife on a few things.
 

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Thanks for all of your advices. I'm still debating... I know I can change counselor anytime but since I'm going with Kaiser and they all working in the same department so I'm afraid it would be awark or that they talk to each other afterwar so it's better to make the best choice now and change only necessary.

My husband will NEVER go to MC so I just don't include him. I suggested and he said "why should I pay money for stup.. people to teach me how to live my life?" So it will be individual counselor...

I'm thinking a female would be more sympathetic to me and I would feel more comfortable to pour my gut to her. But in the other hand, a male counselor would understand what's in the mind of my husband more and may be more helpful. I may not feel so comfortable to say everything I want to him though... Still a hard decision... more help please. Thanks so much.
 

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We had a female counselor. I think it was best in our situation. My wife is quite and has a hard time articulating how she feels. My wife was able to address issues through our counselor. I don't have any issues bringing up how I feel, so it worked out.

My husband will NEVER go to MC so I just don't include him.
I not sure that thats true. If it came down to MC or losing you, what would he choose? That was the choice given to me.
 

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Please help. I'm having my first MC session in a few days and I need suggestion whether I should choose a male or female counselor. I want to change it now so it's not awkward to change later.

My problem is that my husband does NOT give me any respect. He can raise his voice, yell, curse, call me names (F,S, W, B...you name it), uses bad words whenever he wants or any reason. I told him it's not right since our child is 2 yr old now and that it hurts my feelings and self esteem alot. He claims that I make him mad and when he's mad he can said whatever. He even mention divorce a few times. I NEVER call him name once. He is a doctor and I'm also a professional so this is not something we are accustomed to. He does not act like this with anyone, his friends, co-worker, family, but me. He admits he's workaholic, stubborn, egocentric, moody and has problem communication but he says "that's how I'm if you don't like it, leave. I'm the most successful amongs my friends" (he equates success to how much money he makes.)

I always give in to him times after times so he does not respect me at all. Plus, we went thru a lot like my mom passed away, then our first born passed, then I become totally dependent on him financially when my baby is born (now is 2). everytime things happened, my self esteem and confident got lower and lower and I was vulnerable. He took advantage and took me for granted that I'm always here no matter how he treats me. I'm sensitive and not very strong minded.

I still love my husband and wants to be with him as long as he treats me right with respect. I don't know how to do it so I'm going to counselor right now. Someone said you can't change a person but you can change yourself to cause a positive response from him. I will give it be try before I think about the D word.
Anyone with experience of counseling please help... Give me any advice you can and also please tell me with my situation, a male of female counselor would be more helpful...

Very appreciated,
My first concern is that you said YOU are going to see the marriage counselor. Let me just say this. From the sounds of things if it's you, I personally I think you should see a woman who can totally understand and relate to what you're saying. If it's going to be both of you as it should, I think it should be a male because from what you've described of him, he will discredit and discard anything that he doesn't agree with if it's a female. In your marriage there is a lot of work to be done but if it's only you that's willing to put in the work, then you as a couple are done! This is just my humble opinion.

P
 

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OP.... your situation sounds just like mine. I chose to go with a male counselor since my husband was at first resistant to counseling. I wanted him to feel like the counseling would be in his favor. I didn’t want him to feel set-up or attacked in any way. So far we have had 2 sessions. My husband shows a lot of signs of being Narcissistic. So far he has done most of the talking in counseling. I can tell the counselor is seeing the characteristics as well. We get 5 free sessions through my insurance, and 5 more under my husband. I’m praying that we make some kind of progress. I will continue to pray for you as well.
 

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Given what you have told us.

I would say MALE.

Because it doesn't sound like he respects you at all, and I don't know if it's true - but I suspect he may not respect women in general. If another woman tells him what he is doing is totally unacceptable - do you think he will listen? Or brush it off as another sensitive female?

Maybe a man can get through to him that he is being an abusive a hole.

As for the counselor, a good fit is really important, if after a few sessions you are not feeling like the person you choose is effective for you two, there is no shame in finding someone else.
 

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Do you realize that you are being verbally abused? I think instead of an MC you need an IC that will help you realize that what he is doing to you is abusive, disrespectful and cruel and hopefully they will help you find a way to lay down some boundaries and if that doesn't work and he doesn't stop, then the IC should help you see that if not for your sake, for your child's sake, you should leave before it turns physical.
 

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You should have whichever sexed counselor makes you the most comfortable, since you will be going alone.

Who cares what your husband will think about YOUR counselor?

If your counselor is a female, your husband will dismiss her ideas.

If your counselor is a male, he will feel threatened by him, and will probably accuse you of speaking inappropriately or having an affair with him.

Best you don't tell your husband anything about your counselor, whichever you choose. Keep any details, name, even the sex of the counselor to yourself, as a gift to yourself.
 

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A few things to know about Kaiser & MC

Thanks for all of your advices. I'm still debating... I know I can change counselor anytime but since I'm going with Kaiser and they all working in the same department so I'm afraid it would be awark or that they talk to each other afterwar so it's better to make the best choice now and change only necessary.

My husband will NEVER go to MC so I just don't include him. I suggested and he said "why should I pay money for stup.. people to teach me how to live my life?" So it will be individual counselor...

I'm thinking a female would be more sympathetic to me and I would feel more comfortable to pour my gut to her. But in the other hand, a male counselor would understand what's in the mind of my husband more and may be more helpful. I may not feel so comfortable to say everything I want to him though... Still a hard decision... more help please. Thanks so much.
OK, you need to know a few things about Kaiser & mental health counseling.

First, Kaiser does not offer Marriage Counseling. Not in house, or referred (but there is a work-around that I'll get to in a bit). The only thing they offer internally is Individual Counseling, and the only way you can get that is with an appropriate diagnosis by the initial person who interviews you, either in person or on the phone. You've apparently already gone through that initial phase.

Second, no problem with the idea that everybody knows everybody. I suspect you're going to get some added degree of empathy because your issue is that your husband is a doctor. Everybody who works around doctors is going to be familiar with a subset of them that acts just as you describe your husband. Also, the Kaiser system is designed to encourage empathy. Almost excessive empathy, such that sometimes they won't tell you the harsh stuff. Why? Because they're driven by customer satisfaction surveys, far more so than most organizations, especially private practitioners. In the world of mental health, patients are very reluctant to post on places like Yelp because they feel embarrassed about being connected with the need.

Third, in-house individual counseling by Kaiser is likely scheduled so infrequently it may not get the job done. In the busier parts of the network, seeing a counselor or psychologist will be on an every 4-6 week basis. Many of us "go bad" during the interim, having too much time to think the wrong things, and may do better on a weekly schedule. Kaiser doesn't offer that.

Fourth, there is a sort of workaround, for both the lack of marriage counseling and scheduling. Your Kaiser counselor can refer you to being seen by someone in the Magellan network. If you'd like to see who's available in your area, you can use the website Magellan Assist. You can also go to Psychology Today's find-a-therapist website and select "Magellan" for insurance on the right-hand side of the page. When looking for someone in the Magellan network, even though Kaiser is sending you there for individual counseling, virtually all of the therapists do couples counseling as well, and most will have no issue seeing the two of you together for marriage counseling. That's the situation my wife and I are in. Only issue might be a therapist who charges differently for individual vs couples counseling.

Fifth, the Magellan network doesn't offer the best & the brightest. It lowballs payments so most therapists won't take it. For example, my wife is in serious need of EMDR according to her Kaiser psychologist. Good luck finding a therapist with EMDR training in the Magellan network near us. And of course the better therapists won't take Magellan because they don't need to; they're booked up with higher-paying insurance carriers or private pay. I am currently trying to find a way to get Kaiser to pay a portion of the private fee for a non-Magellan provider. It's probably not possible, but if a good EMDR therapist runs $250/session and Magellan might be paying $125, shouldn't it be possible I could come up with the difference? Of course, it's likely not. But I'm going to be checking into this.

Sixth, the male or female IC thing. Well, since it's actually not marriage counseling and since your husband won't be attending in a formal marriage counseling session (he may be invited by your individual counselor for a session or two though), I think it's more important who YOU would feel better with. And it might be that you'd be better off with a male, to get a guy's perspective on things. And it might be that things you bring back to talk with your husband about may have more credibility coming from a guy. That's completely wrong thinking, but you've got a completely wrong relationship, right?

So... you're expectations may be a bit out of whack for Kaiser. But, if it turns out otherwise, that you're getting something I'm told doesn't exist, please let me know!!!! Because I think I understand the system but maybe I don't know all the tricks.

Best of luck to you. You've got an especially tough road ahead because the more you discuss your situation here, the more people are going to make you feel like you've been a door mat, and that's a rough place to be. You seem to have been taken advantage of and deliberately had your self-esteem diminished, and there's no quick fix for that. Improvement will come little by little, while awareness of your situation is going to increase quickly and dramatically. Somehow you had a coping mechanism in place that dealt with things, but that's gone now. Which is one of the reasons why I think it's going to be really important to see someone more often than once every 4-6 weeks.
 

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I hate to say it, but I don’t think an MC is going to help. You can’t be convinced to respect someone.
 
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