offer help to those who are dealing with Marriage,
Blended Families, Couples, Relationship, Child and
Family issues and to those who are considering marriage
more effective communication styles
with marital conflicts
and improving intimacy issues
through trust issues
or physical spouse abuse
divorce or separation
families and children coping with parental conflict
Counseling (Couples-Relationships) . . .
deserve to experience the benefits of an intimate
and healthy relationship with your partner. The
crucial first step towards developing more fulfilling
relationships is the initial phone call to my office
to make an appointment
for counseling/therapy. I appreciate your acknowledgment
that you need help and are reaching out to say,
"I'm tired of feeling this way, I want my relationship(s)
to get better".
is really different from individual counseling.
In individual counseling, the person is usually
seen by themselves and the focus is on the issues
concerning themselves . . . their thinking,
their feelings, and their own issues. In marital
counseling, the focus is on the system or "the dance"
that they do. I see the "marriage" as "the client,"
rather than two individuals. The sum is greater
than each of the parts.
come to therapy usually with some kind of communication
block. Hurt, frustration, distrust and continuous
arguments can cause a couple to seek counseling.
I help them identify the type of dance that they
do. They do the dance unconsciously. One may over-function,
while the other under-functions. Or is it that the
under-functioning one causes the other to over-function.
Systems theory answers with, "yes." They both influence
each other rather than "cause" the problem. The
dance itself is the problem. They might be headed
for separation and divorce, and see the other as
"the problem." Little do they realize that they
are taking their part of the dance with them. Without
help, they are very likely to get into the same
kind of dance, just with a different dancing partner.
they identify their part in the dance, I help them
to make conscious changes in the pattern. If one
gets more angry than the other, then they might
try to switch their roles a little. One may feel
2/3 of the anger while the other only feels 1/3.
They could work together to channel their anger
into making constructive changes rather than take
it out on each other. Then I help them to stabilize
the new pattern. This is why marital therapy usually
takes a 3-4 month commitment to see real change.
Of course, people don't commit until they have established
a rapport with the therapist and have decided for
themselves that this is the course of treatment
When BOTH partners are able to own their part in the
relationship and work in unison toward improving
the relationship - miraculous change can take place.
This commitment by BOTH partners does not always
take place. Marriage counseling does not always
prevent divorce. One partner alone cannot "hold
the marriage together". If divorce is ultimately
chosen; it can take place with the least
negative impact upon the partners, families and
especially upon the children of divorce.
Top of Page
Counseling . . .
Romance novels and movies would have us believe
that when the chemistry is there between two people,
marital bliss will automatically follow. However;
assuming that marriage will be easy and blissful
just because you are in love, is much like starting
a business without a business plan.
When a relationship is new and exciting, it is easy
to see only the good and to ignore the things you
do not want to see. Disregarding the little things
sets the stage for unhealthy habits. Over time the
mole hills can become mountains.
Every couple inevitably faces conflict at some point
in their marriage. It is important to strengthen
your relationship and to prepare for future challenges
and conflicts now while your relationship is young
and you can more easily develop healthy ways of
communicating and dealing with conflict and stress.
Couples today face more demands and have fewer support
systems than ever before. The typical marriage -
managing two careers while raising children - requires
that couples have a solid foundation and skills
to communicate, resolve issues and set goals. Without
this foundation, it is easy to feel overwhelmed
by the pressures of everyday life. The major difference
between those who are overcome by stress and those
who overcome stress, is not the presence or absence
of stress, but the ability to recognize the initial
signs of stress and learn how to manage it.
Pre-marital counseling provides you with the opportunity
to identify and assess the strengths and needs of
both individuals in the relationship and
to build lifelong skills that will strengthen not
only your marriage, but your life in general.
is the time to make an investment in your upcoming
marriage - an investment that will have huge returns.
Pre Marital Counseling includes (but is not limited
to) the following topics . . .
and Conflict Management
in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy