Couples Counseling

Despite what Disney may have unintentionally taught us, happily ever after isn’t something that simply happens as we walk into the sunset. Relationships take work and an investment of time, energy, emotions, and thought. The rewards are big, but perhaps fairy tales should end with “and they worked on their relationship every day after.”  read more...

Couples counseling can be for partners in any stage of relationship who are seeking a more conscious, connected relationship. I have worked with couples in all stages of relationships from pre-marital counseling to healing from crisis to post-divorce. I love watching the signs of love and attachment, the challenge of making sure both parties feel heard and supported, and helping couples learn new techniques and discover new depths to their relationship. I utilize Imago Relationshp Therapy theories and exercises, which is a research-based approach to working with relationships, popularized in the 1980's when the founder Harville Hendrix first appeared on Oprah. 

I now offer a nine-week online psychoeducational program that serves both as a self-study program for those couples who wish to work on their relationship at home, working at their own pace, as well as an introduction to couples counseling, teaching the skills and tools needed to make couples counseling really beneficial and successful. I now ask all new couples to start Couplehood: A New Way to Love before their first session, so they can get started right away even when my calendar may be full for several weeks. 

 

Stereotypically it is women who drag men to see a couples counselor to talk, but in truth I have at least as many men as women contact me about relationship issues - whether coming as a couple or individually. Men just as much as women appreciate having a third party translate the intention and deeper meaning behind their attempts at communication. The truth is when we try to talk to the person closest to us, we often fail to communicate effectively, end up discussing peripheral details rather than "the main thing", and unintentionally create more distance rather than finding agreement or even compromise. 

 

I particularly enjoy working with couples from different cultural backgrounds. Both inter-cultural relationships and the immigrant experience offer unique challenges to couples. Regardless of what brings you to couples counseling, my goal is to help you leave with more consciousness, more compassion, more love, and more curiosity. 

Common Reasons for Couples Counseling

  • Criticism, Contempt, Stonewalling, or Defensiveness
  • Difficulty communicating, including feeling misunderstood, having difficulty explaining your position, or not understanding your partner's position
  • Feeling that disagreements are never truly resolved
  • Disagreement on major relationship issues including parenting or finances
  • Differences in opinions and/or backgrounds
  • Change in sexual relationship, communication, affection, etc.
  • Feeling like one or both of you don't fight fair and need help with conflict resolution
  • Contemplating or participating in an emotional or sexual extra-marital affair
  • Sexual problems, including disagreement on frequency or technique or lack of sex for several weeks or months
  • Grief, trauma, or major life stressors like job change, move, change in family dynamics, etc. 
  • Conflict with in-laws and/or extended family members
  • Work/life balance concerns, including managing household and parenting tasks
  • Feeling more like roommates than romantic partners
  • Considering separation and/or divorce
  • Deciding whether marriage is right for your relationship or not

 

Getting Started

While only one partner needs to schedule a couples counseling appointment, each partner will be asked to complete a digital intake form and informed consent contract. Between now and your first appointment, please start the online program Couplehood: A New Way to Love to start learning the skills and tools you will need to make couples counseling successful and beneficial. 

  

 

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