Couples therapy focuses on improving the relationship between two people who are in an intimate relationship, whether they are married, dating, or living together. The goal of couples therapy is to help resolve conflicts, improve communication, and deepen emotional connection between partners.
In sessions you will work with your therapist to pinpoint the specific issues that are causing tension in your relationship and explore the underlying dynamics and patterns of communication that may be contributing to the conflict. Overtime you and your partner will develop new communication and conflict resolution skills, such as active listening, empathy, and problem-solving in order to build a stronger foundation for your future together.
What Type of Couples Attend Therapy?
Some examples of what might bring a couple to therapy are listed below. If you do not fall into one of these categories that is okay, there are a variety of other reasons couples come to therapy!
1. Couples seeking premarital counseling: Couples who are engaged may seek therapy to work through any issues that may arise before they get married. This can include discussing expectations, values, and goals for your future together.
2. Newlyweds: Couples who have recently gotten married may seek therapy to work through any challenges they are facing as they adjust to married life and navigate their new roles and responsibilities.
3. Neurodivergence in the relationship: Neurodivergent partners, or couples where one or both partners have a neurological condition such as autism, ADHD, or other related conditions, often face unique relationship challenges that can be difficult to navigate without professional support. Some of the common issues that neurodivergent couples may face include (but are not limited to): communication difficulties, sensory issues, emotional regulation, and differences in social expectations.
4. Couples experiencing communication issues: Many couples come to therapy to improve their communication skills. This can include learning how to express needs and emotions more effectively, as well as how to actively listen and respond to their partner’s needs.
5. Couples facing infertility or adoption issues: Couples who are struggling with infertility or adoption-related issues may seek therapy to help them process their feelings and work through any relationship challenges that may arise.
6. Couples experiencing conflict: Many couples seek therapy to address conflicts that have arisen in their relationship. This can include conflicts related to money, sex, parenting, etc.
What to Expect in Couples Therapy
Emotion-Focused Therapy (EFT) is a highly effective evidence-based approach to strengthening relationships. It is a short-term, structured therapy that focuses on creating a safe and supportive atmosphere where couples can explore their emotions and work towards building deeper and more meaningful connections.
EFT works by helping couples identify and understand their primary emotions (fear, desire for connection, etc). These primary emotions are often masked by secondary reactive emotions such as anger and defensiveness. By creating a safe space to access these primary emotions, couples can begin to address the underlying issues that affect their relationship.
One of the main benefits of EFT is that it emphasizes the importance of attachment in relationships. By exploring the patterns and dynamics of attachment, couples can gain a deeper understanding of how their actions and emotions are connected. This understanding can help form stronger, more secure bonds and overcome any negative patterns that may be holding them back.
If you and your partner are struggling with communication, intimacy, or other relationship issues, EFT can be an effective solution.