LOVE AND RELATIONSHIPS

Are you longing for more intimacy and less conflict?

You may be reading this wondering if the days of effortless connection, inspired adventures, and spontaneous passion and romance with your significant other have faded for good… You may be wondering why it’s gotten so challenging to solve the most trivial disagreements without frequent arguments, misunderstandings, and frustration. You may even have experienced a significant loss of trust in your relationship and want to know if there is hope for healing or renewed beginnings.

If any of this feels familiar, it’s because it is common to most couples. Once the ‘honeymoon period’ wears off, and the hectic reality of life demands our attentions again, most couples experience a subtle or drastic shift, and begin to notice that things don’t seem to ‘flow’ quite like they used to. This can happen very quickly or months or years later. The picture might be confusing…arguments and misunderstandings seem to happen out of nowhere, there may be difficulties with affection and intimacy , “issues” from the past seem to emerge over and over, and there may be loneliness and a sense of alienation. What happened?!

The most frustrating part of this for most couples is that everything seemed to start out so well and they watch in disbelief as things begin to change for the worse. The good news is that even the most successful relationships will have conflict and frustration for the wonderful reason that we are all unique. The other good news is that change is possible. The bad news is that it takes most couples months or years to seek support. The key lies in communication – and how to do it in a way that helps your relationship thrive rather than deteriorate.

My Approach:

My approach to couples counseling is based on the research and couples therapy method of Professors John & Julie Gottman, PhD, at the Gottman relationship Institute in Seattle WA, where I completed the Level II Couples Counseling Training for therapists. Drs. Gottman spent the past 30 years researching what ‘happy couples’ did differently that ‘unhappy couples’, and discovered a tremendous amount of information about the kinds of communication and connection that helped ‘happy’ couples grow closer or alternatively ‘unhappy couples’ drift apart. He created the Gottman Method based on his research findings, and to my knowledge it is the only truly research supported couples counseling method available, though I do appreciate and use tools from other approaches as well.

Some example areas of focus:

  • Understanding the strengths and areas of possible improvement in your relationship
  • Learning new tools for communication
  • Responding to bids for connection
  • Understanding the 4 things that will guarantee to deteriorate any relationship- and how to avoid them using their antidotes.
  • How to de-escalate arguments
  • How to get out of grid-locked arguments and into dialogue
  • Rebuilding trust, fondness, and intimacy
  • Strengthening friendship
  • Re-kindling passion
  • Much more…

Who can benefit from couples counseling?

All couples can benefit from relationship support from time to time. Even when things are going pretty well, it’s often possible to deepen intimacy and connection even further.

  • If you recognized your relationship in the first paragraphs of this page, there are probably some areas in your relationship that could use some positive attention. This is when couples counseling is the most beneficial.
  • Couples counseling can also be helpful if you have already ended your relationship but will need to continue the relationship in some new capacity such is with co-parenting, running a business together, owning a house, etc…
  • If you are experiencing physical abuse in your relationship, couples counseling may be contraindicated. It is recommended you seek individual counseling support first to explore the best options given the circumstances. Feel free to contact me with any questions about this.

What happens in a session?

In a safe and relaxed atmosphere you will be invited to explore what is working and what is not working in your relationship, what tools you can use to improve your level of relationship fulfillment, and how to use these tools effectively to create lasting positive change, and deepen connection, intimacy, and friendship.

You are always welcome to drop me a line or call me to talk more about relationship counseling to see if it seems like a good fit for your relationship at this time.

Your Relationship is Worth it!