Do you feel alone in your relationship or marriage?
More like roommates, strangers, or even enemies instead of lovers and best friends?
Are you reeling from betrayal or infidelity?
Are you struggling with a partner who has an untreated mental health or substance use disorder or trauma?
Are you having endless conflicts about sex, mess, kids, in-laws, work, money or something else?
It’s scary, frustrating, and isolating when we feel like our relationship is off course.
We rarely enter intimate relationships with research-based relationship skills to guide us in creating a happy, fulfilling and passionate long-term marriage. Instead, we’re taught that love will conquer all. We think relationships are common sense, but we’re actually flying without a map especially if neither sets of our parents were the model we wish to emulate. In all other important endeavors in our life- work, parenting, health, financial planning, and even hobbies- we realize the importance of reading a book, taking a class, and consulting what the experts say, and yet very few couples are encouraged to invest in learning how to have a healthy long-term relationship. It’s no wonder why marriage is difficult.
If you’re thinking, “But it was so easy in the beginning! What happened?!” You are not alone. I can still recall receiving the book Passionate Marriage as a wedding gift and wondering, “who needs a book on this when it all feels so natural?” What most couples don’t realize is that: there are 3 distinct relationship stages that we all go through (harmony/bliss, disharmony/disillusionment, and repair/mature love)~ more than once during our marriage.
The key to an amazing relationship is learning how to move from disharmony to repair and strengthening your bond.
After the honeymoon (harmony) period ends or after major life changes, such as having children, you may find yourself struggling in a variety of ways- feeling emotionally disconnected (like roommates), not appreciated, not having your needs or dreams supported, missing the passion you once had, or having endless unresolved heated arguments that leave you feeling hopeless, disillusioned, and afraid that either your partner will leave you or your partner will never be able to satisfy your needs.
All couples have relationship issues at different points in their journey.
As a couples therapist, teacher, parent, and spouse married for 20 years, I am well aware of how common it is for couples to experience challenges as part of their story. While you might be feeling overwhelmed by your relationship challenges and desperately wishing life could just go back to an easier time, you and your partner would be missing out on some of the greatest personal and relationship growth opportunities possible. In my experience personally and professionally, it’s not the conflicts or mistakes that are the deal breakers. What causes relationships to stagnate or deteriorate is when one or both partners lack openness to deeply listen to and understand our partner, refuse to apologize or make a repair, and lack willingness to work on our own areas of needed growth.
Fortunately, there is hope!
Investing in couples therapy can help you and your partner heal and move beyond your limitations and pain from the past in order to become your best selves. With the help of a compassionate and experienced therapist trained in advanced couple therapy methods, you can reconnect to your partner and recreate a more fulfilling, supportive, and passionate relationship.
You can heal from past hurt, breakthrough gridlock conflict, and revive your love.
Couple Therapy Sessions Are:
Heart-centered & emotionally-focused – Grounded in attachment theory, I will elicit greater authenticity, empathy and understanding for you and your partner by drawing from your your current feelings and relationship dynamic, childhood, and previous intimate relationships. You will be supported to speak and listen from your heart, so you and your partner’s needs, hopes, fears, and longings will be heard, understood, validated, and empathized, and your relationship dynamic can be changed to a more supportive one.
Evidenced-based – I draw from the most effective and evidenced-based couples therapy models (including EFT, PACT, RLT, Esther Perel, & Gottman) today. Since every couple is unique, it is my job to decide on the most helpful skills and concepts to match each couple’s needs.
Strength-focused – You have strengths as an individual and as a couple that deserve recognition. When others see the best in you, you feel safe and more open to change. You can also feel more hope as a couple when your strengths are honored and reflected back to you.
Active-oriented & Practical– You will face each other as I coach you to better express yourself, attune, and care for one another. You will practice in real time different solutions related to your problems and/or goals, ex. effective communication, conflict resolution, rebuilding trust, and intimacy skills. You will rediscover the fun, sense of adventure, and passion you previously had to continue writing fabulous chapters in your love story.
Collaborative/empowering – Since every couple is unique, I will follow your lead with you identifying your relationship goals. My job as a couples therapist is to help you reach your goals by providing “process consulting”, skill coaching, drilling down together to the root of your struggles, and supporting you in taking small steps to reach your desired goals.