I want to let people know that I have added a new article, entitled “Fundamental of Couples Therapy,” to the library section of my website. I work a lot with couples (married and non-married; straight and gay) and I very much enjoy that work. Couples therapy is usually very dynamic; I find that I am an active participant. And I find that it is often helpful. Sadly, sometimes a couple comes into therapy when there has been a lot of damage to the relationship. In those cases, it may be that feelings are too hurt, issues too solidified, to be able to restore intimacy and trust and warm feelings to the relationship. But quite often that is not the case. Even when couples have been mired in issues that seem intractable, I have found that the dynamics of couples therapy – particularly having this outside presence (the therapist) comment on and help reflect on issues – helps greatly. And real change is possible.
While I do not believe in cookie cutter approaches to psychotherapy, and each individual or couple client presents their unique challenges, I have found that there are some basics that I tend to return to and focus on when working with couples. Communication – effective, empathic and heart-felt communication – is one of those mainstays. I write in the article about that and the other core components to working with couples to restore the vitality and intimacy of their relationships. I believe that while relationships can be difficult, they can also be sources of great satisfaction and catalysts for growth. Relationships tend to raise people’s issues – mostly because that is where people’s issues were first born, in relationships of some sort. And because these issues resurface, people now have the opportunity to address them in the context of their current relationship. It is possible through that work to resolve those issues and clear away impediments to relating more honestly and intimately. When that occurs, it is a great feeling for everyone.
If you are interested, please check out the article “Fundamentals of Couples therapy” in the library section of my website.