• marriage on the brink of divorce can potentially benefit from discernment counseling.
  • In one to five sessions, a discernment counselor helps the couple decide whether to stay married as they are, start the divorce process, or seek couples therapy.
  • The process is focused on understanding how the marriage got to this point, and the part that each person played in it — not on fixing anything.

There’s only one way to botch discernment counseling.

Ask Bill Doherty, cofounder of the Doherty Relationship Institute, and he’ll tell you: “We always say the only failure is if nobody’s learned anything.”

Doherty is a trailblazer in the field of discernment counseling, a relatively new type of treatment for couples on the brink of divorce.