We are all wired for connection. This can affect any couple regardless of any initial match that seemed “perfect.” Rediscover intimacy. Rebuild trust and connection. Replace dysfunctional ways with intentional and compassionate interaction.
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Wired For Connection
Are you feeling anxious, overwhelmed, sad or uncertain in your relationship? Feeling safe with someone is fundamental to our well-being. It’s how we lead meaningful lives that are satisfying and purposeful.
Relationships take more than attraction over the long haul. But the work need not be terribly complicated or take years of therapy. In fact, research shows that relationships can thrive even if partners don’t have similar interests, and are otherwise imperfect.
That said, while it is normal to have difficult moments and disagreements in relationships, one relationship expert, Dr. John Gottman, states that many couples wait about six years before they seek help with their relationships. This makes it so much easier to sustain unhealthy communication and behavior that frustrates connection and makes it hard to build the trust and intimacy in which connection thrives. You don’t have to wait that long! Prolonging the repair of your relationship subjects you to needless suffering and the likelihood of a broken relationship.
One of the gifts of working from an eclectic mind-body approach to relationship work is being able to help couples of varied backgrounds find intimacy and connection despite being imperfect, different or limited in terms of communication skills, emotional depth or lack of “couples work.”
Adult relationships contain much nuance and complexity. The task is to figure out different life experiences that combine with a variety of adaptations and nuanced communication patterns and behaviors. Certainly, no two relationships are alike and what works in one case, may not work in another.
To unravel the complexity and address the root cause of each unique relationship, I draw from a number of therapeutic modalities to meet your needs that include Emotionally-Focused Couples Therapy (EFT), Attachment-based, Existential, Solution-Focused, Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy and Gottman Principles.
In other words, I work with whatever works best for the couple rather than a prescribed approach with a set of number sessions. You decide what you want and when therapy is complete based on your goals, outcomes and healing. Can you better manage conflict? Has secure attachment been restored?
This approach falls within the humanistic-existential tradition which emphasizes the human need for meaning and authenticity. It also follows my expertise working from an attachment and trauma framework.
By working from this perspective, I can help you learn each other’s automatic reactions in order to increase your sense of safety, understanding and love.
A Progressive Approach to Your Therapy
I won’t play mediator analyzing the content of your arguments and deciding who’s right and who’s wrong. Instead, the emphasis will be on identifying and breaking repeated behavior patterns that get nowhere and developing renewed connection.
You won’t need to learn artificial and fake sounding communication skills to grow closer. You will develop natural attunement to your partner and to yourself to nurture your relationship in a natural and accessible manner.
Relationship Intensives & Marriage Counseling
Spending 8-12 hours over a few days in a therapy intensive can provide the benefits of several months of therapy. It is also a more affordable option that can significantly shorten the overall amount of time in therapy as you put into practice new skills and insights in a shorter amount of time.
Stripped of the frills of fancy retreats, our intensives allow you to interact with renewed vigor and understanding of yourself and your partner in your regular environment which is something that can elude partners who learn in an unfamiliar environment. Learning in a setting that contains the same cues to which you can respond differently reinforces what you learn in therapy. You will know first hand what works for you and be in the best setting to change your environment to support new ways of interacting. Each intensive is two and a half hours so you have time to incorporate what you learn and return refreshed the following day to better assimilate your learning.
Couples Therapy Intensive
Select the number of 2.5 hour intensives that work for you in successive, daily or weekly increments. Invite 1-2 impacted individuals 16 years and up as supports, for no additional charge, for group work that reinforces new relational dynamics and insights as you create a new environment for your learning.
Is an Intensive Right for You?
- Do you want something more than traditional couples counseling?
- Do you suspect that there are underlying trauma or unresolved issues from childhood that affect your dynamic?
- Are you in need of an effective and flexible option that can work within existing obligations?
- Do you need to maintain privacy not afforded in typical couples intensive retreats?
- Are you in need therapy that captures cultural, racial, spiritual or other non-dominant aspects not addressed by conventional therapy?
- Is your relationship complicated by substance abuse or addiction?
If Yes, Couples Intensive therapy Might be For You
The Couple Bubble Zone
There’s something heartfelt about that seemingly effortless connection we might have witnessed in which the intentions of two people appear aligned and synchronized. If we are truly blessed, such an observation resonates deep within us because we have experienced this ourselves.
There’s an energy about this interaction that connects to nervous system. We recognize this connection and might deeply yearn for it if it currently missing in our lives.
The goal of couple’s therapy is to help individuals attain this synchronicity that is sometimes beyond touch or expressed purpose. As effortless as this interaction may seem, the foundation of such connection is based on the nuances of secure attachment:
As simple as these notions might appear, they often evade those who did not experience consistent emotional support in their childhood.
Chronic stress or trauma can rob an individual of these abilities later in life regardless of one’s secure childhood. (Though research shows that secure attachment in childhood can act as a protective factor against later PTSD notwithstanding significant trauma).
What might be sensed as spontaneous and deep connection in others is likely the result of consistent and dedicated practice on the part of each individual in ongoing investment in the relationship and intentional repair when needed.
These activities are learned. Warm and loving relationships take investment. The right investment. We cannot cajole or bargain our way into such connection. Such behavior can result from codependency or trauma in which subconscious defenses teach us to disconnect in a misguided attempt at safety.
The couple bubble requires each partner to sustain vulnerability for the simple reason that connection requires vulnerability.
This is part of the focus of couple’s work and where the significance of individual work becomes more obvious: there’s more than one nervous system at play in a couple.
This shifts us to the framework of the type of couple’s work you will find here. There’s a very significant part of couple’s work that is individual work. This might be done in individual therapy or as a part of the work in couple’s therapy.
Conceptually, in couple’s therapy we work with the (1) individuals who make up the partnership, (2) the couple, and (3) what I refer to as the “space in between.”