The purpose of couples therapy, also known as marriage counseling, is to support couples at various stages of their relationship (dating, engaged, married, or anywhere in between). I utilize an integrative approach of evidence-based therapy modalities to help couples build stronger and healthier relationships that includes Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy as well as other therapy models to provide relief for couples struggling from:
- Frequent conflict and arguments
- Poor or ineffective communication
- Feeling emotionally distant, disconnected or dissatisfied
- Decreased levels or interest in intimacy or sex
- Infidelity (emotional or physical affairs) and/or betrayals
- Life transitions (changes in employment, retirement, empty nesting, geographical moves, grief/loss)
- Questions of separation or divorce
What is Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy?
Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) is a short-term (10 to 20 sessions) and structured approach to couples’ therapy developed by Drs. Sue Johnson and Les Greenberg in the 1980’s. It is grounded in over twenty years of research. It is based on the science of adult attachment styles and helps partners recognize and understand the negative cycles each of us gets stuck in. EFT is a humanistic, experiential and collaborative therapy focusing on negative communication patterns and love as an attachment bond. It provides couples with the skills needed to identify, modify, and restructure interactions with the goal to achieve more positive and sustainable relationships.
Grounded in Science
According to the website dedicated to EFT, www.ICEEFT.com, a substantial body of research outlining the effectiveness of this treatment exists. It is now considered one of the most validated forms of couples therapy. Research studies have found that 70-75% of couples undergoing EFT successfully move from distress to recovery, and approximately 90% show significant improvements.
Goals of EFT include:
- To help partners identify and understand key emotional responses
- To create a shift in negative relationship patterns
- To foster the creation of a secure and lasting bond between partners
What to expect when entering Couples Therapy?
Because each couple enters therapy for varying reasons and has unique needs, the course and length of therapy cannot easily be predicted. The general process of couples therapy includes the following steps:
- Joint Interview: Both partners will meet with me and participate in a joint interview. A series of questions will be asked to understand what brought the couple into treatment.
- Individual Interview(s): In addition, I will meet with each partner to gain an increased understanding of an individual’s history, understanding of relationship challenges, and treatment goals.
- Assessment: Each partner will be asked to complete assessment questionnaires to determine conflict styles, commitment to the relationship, personal stressors, and overall relationship satisfaction.
- Feedback Session: Partners will attend a joint feedback session to learn about the assessment results and to develop treatment plan.
- Treatment: Based on the couples needs and goals for therapy, specific interventions and exercises will be taught and practiced.
Couples therapy sessions last up to 90 minutes in length.
90 minute sessions allow the couple an adequate amount of time to learn, practice, and process strategies and techniques. In the initial stages of therapy it is more beneficial for couples to attend therapy sessions weekly. However, after the fundamental skills are learned, the frequency of sessions can be reduced. By spacing out meeting times, couples are encouraged to practice the new skills they have learned. Meeting frequency can continuously be adjusted based on progress or specific couples’ needs.
My Personal Theory of Therapy
Mind Balance Psychology Center LLC
5755 North Point Parkway
Alpharetta GA 30022
Individual therapy consists of one-on-one meetings between the therapist and client.
Couples & Family Therapy
Therapy to treat relational distress whether it be between couples or within a family unit.