All couples can have relational problems, yet each couple experiences difficulties in their unique way. Couples often arrive at the first session believing that each partner will be laying out his or her “position” and the therapist will act as a judge to decide who is right. My purpose is not to referee or to tell you exactly what to do. As Jack Nicholson’s character in the movie “As Good As It Gets” said, in frustration, “I’m drowning here and you’re describing the water.” That’s probably not what you need from your therapist either. Having a third party assess patterns and communication skills can be a very effective way in addressing relationship concerns.

Each partner has practiced his/her side of the argument for so long, they each excel at knowing how to attack the other’s weaknesses, thereby unhealthy patterns can continue to persist. This is why, at the start of counseling, a great deal of focus is placed on the messages each partner experienced with relationships while they were growing up. Understanding the “blue print” that they were exposed to can help facilitate unlocking couples from their entrenched “unhealthy dance.” As the therapist has an unique vantage point, suggestions can be made about how each partner might consider other perspectives and choices.

My hope is to relieve negative behavioral patterns that all couples engage in – patterns that it’s tough for us to see. I’ll assist you in bringing these to the surface and suggest alternatives when conflicts arise. Ultimately, it will be a more effective way of navigating your relationship as well as helping you to develop deeper intimacy with your partner.

Couples therapy or marriage counseling can help you and a spouse or partner cope with:

• Infidelity
• Divorce
• Substance abuse
• Same-sex relationship issues
• Cultural clashes
• Finances
• Unemployment
• Blended families
• Communication problems
• Sexual difficulties
• Conflicts about raising children
• Infertility
• Anger
• Changing roles, such as retirement
• Couples work surrounding sexual compulsive behaviors, disclosures, etc.