Couples decide to seek therapy for many different reasons. What most of them have in common is that they are hoping to strengthen their relationship as they work through difficult issues that are having a negative impact on their ability to function as a team. Some of the most common issues that bring couples into therapy include communication, money, power/control, roles and responsibilities, balancing work and relationships, conflict resolution, emotional connection/intimacy, infidelity, or family of origin issues (“family of origin” means the family we grew up in).
Therapy can help the couple improve communication, resolve conflicts, and deepen intimacy and understanding in their relationship. It can help each member of the couple grow as a person while staying connected to one another.
Couples therapy can also be very helpful when used proactively. Many couples use therapy prior to moving in together, getting married, or making other transitions in their relationship. In these cases, counseling can help identify “hot button” issues that have the potential to cause problems, as well as how the couple’s unique strengths can be used to resolve these issues if they arise in the future.
Therapy can also help couples who have decided to separate or divorce to do so respectfully, and to help their children through this difficult process. In addition, for couples who are not sure whether to separate or commit to working on the relationship, I offer discernment counseling. Discernment counseling is used to explore the different paths the relationship might take, and to help partners make decisions about how to proceed.
In addition to the common issues noted above, these are my areas of specific experience:
- Mental Health Diagnoses
- Substance Use
- Parenting Issues
- Blended Families
- Extended Family Issues
- Divorce/Dissolution (Note: I do not perform custody evaluations; instead I work with parents on managing parenting issues that come up as the relationship transitions)
- Major Life Transitions
- Medical Diagnoses, including living with chronic illness
- Managing Stress