Couples Counseling

Let’s face it. Relationships are rarely as steamy and romantic as them media portrays. When was the last time you gave or received roses and chocolate strawberries? If you’re like most of us, all that went out the door after the “marketing stage” of your relationship ended. At some point, butterflies began to subside and the nervous excitement of new love dampened with the passing of time. Eventually, the little nuances that were once overlooked turned into major pet peeves. Life happens and with it comes the stress from the day to day pressures at work and home. Unfortunately, couples often put off counseling until circumstances become so bad and/or out of control that their relationship is left hanging by a thread.

A relationship “free of problems” is an inaccurate representation and unfair expectation. I once heard someone say, “All relationships have problems, it’s who you chose to have those problems with that makes the difference.” With this in mind, my first recommendation is to always be proactive in your relationship. Seek out a compatible therapist with whom both partners feel comfortable talking to.

My preferred approach to couples counseling involves skill building. There is a wealth of knowledge to be gained by learning essential tools in assertiveness training, self-advocacy, conflict resolution, effective communication, anger management training, problem-solving, and in developing and maintaining healthy boundaries. Areas addressed in couples counseling may involve trust issues, infidelity, codependency, co-parenting, or problems with intimacy. An objective outside party is often best suited to facilitate open, honest communication and provide clarification when messages are lost in translation.

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