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A Critical Review of Help-Seeking for Couples Therapy: Clinical Implications and Next Steps


Research has linked relationship distress and divorce to negative mental and physical health outcomes. However, couples seem reluctant to engage in couples therapy. One aim of couple help-seeking is to better understand the process involved in getting couples into therapy. The goal of this type of literature this is to increase participation in couples therapy. To achieve this goal, a critical understanding of the current literature on help-seeking for couples therapy is needed. This paper reviews that literature, evaluating methodologies and theories used, and discuss research and clinical implications. We hope researchers can use this article as a springboard for future projects and that clinicians can apply the findings and implications in their practices.

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Correspondence to Aimee Hubbard.

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Hubbard, A., Harris, S. A Critical Review of Help-Seeking for Couples Therapy: Clinical Implications and Next Steps. Contemp Fam Ther 42, 152–162 (2020).

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  • Couples
  • Couple help-seeking
  • Couple therapy
  • Relationship distress