Couples may choose to enter therapy as a result of relentless relationship conflict, major life decisions, uncertainty that the relationship can be salvaged, a change in circumstance or in core shared beliefs. Some may look for help to address specific issues, such as: communication, pre-marital questions, sexual intimacy, infidelity, parenting, infertility, illness, and more. Others may experience their relationship as stable, yet struggle with a general sense of dissatisfaction or stress from the daily demands of life.
Whatever the challenge, therapy can help to examine the past and current relational patterns; to bolster a couple's skill set and connection; to foster intimacy and vulnerability; and to help determine a way forward in order to make decisions that will best serve each individual and the couple together. Ultimately, therapy can help couples achieve a deeper understanding of their partner's wants and needs in a safe, supportive space.
I have seen families benefit from counseling when they share a space to work on a common goal. Examples of typical family goals might be: to communicate more effectively; to better understand the family system dynamics; and to recognize the strengths and challenges within their system. Some struggles I have helped families work through:
- Life Cycle Transitions - Adjusting to new norms in a new family structure, the addition of a new child, relocation, and others.
- Pre and Postnatal - Supporting couples as their roles shift from Couple to Parents
- Crises or Trauma - Divorce or separation, death or loss, illness, and others
- Co-Parenting - Helping parents of divorce or separation ensure that an arrangement is amicable, and best for the children
- Excess Conflict - When family arguments remain heated for an extended period of time, families can benefit from exploring triggers, underlying issues, new ways to communicate and problem solve.
- Parenting Adolescents - While this can be a developmentally challenging time for teens, helping parents and families learn to better live with one another, and to strategize the best way possible to support the teen, can benefit everyone in the family.