Counseling Client Characteristics
I work with couples who know something is missing in their relationship. They started out very much in love. They never imagined they would ever be considering marriage counseling. But somehow they’ve lost the connection they used to have.
Do you face any of these challenges?
You feel more like roommates than a couple. You talk with each other more about the logistics of family life than you do about what’s in your heart. You don’t really believe that work is more important than your family, but sometimes the demands of your career make it really hard to stay tuned in to your partner.
You put your kids first during the preschool years, and now you realize drifted apart. Now that you’re past the survival stage of parenting, you have some cycles for focusing on your relationship. You want to reconnect before the distance between you becomes a way of life.
You find yourself having the same arguments over and over. Your blood pressure shoots up fast when the same old subject comes up, and sometimes things get really nasty. Making the decisions you have to just to manage daily life feels like a struggle. You walk on eggshells to avoid the blowups.
Your family is the most important thing to you in the world. Divorce is unimaginable, but sometimes you wonder how much longer you can take the stress.
You want to understand your own relationship patterns better. You don’t want to kiss any more frogs, and you want to get the insights you need to choose the right person the next time around.
You’re newly engaged, and you don’t want to find yourself in any of the situations described here. You see your marriage as the foundation of your life, and you want to get the tools you need to give yourself the best possible chance of spending the rest of your life happily married.
Note: I do not work with polyamorous couples.
If you recognize yourself here, please read on.
My services are likely to be a good fit for you if:
You work best with some amount of structure. You like homework and exercises that give you insights you wouldn’t come to in freeform conversation. I do have clients who thrive with a more unstructured approach. And there are times when you have to do open exploration or else you will miss things. My general approach is to come to each session with an agenda, and also be open to your concerns and preferences of the moment. Of course, the Rock Solid 12-Week Marriage Program is the most structured of all the services I offer.
You set a high value on responsibility. You are realistic and know that improving your relationship will require you to look at your own patterns and make some changes. You don’t expect your counselor to just fix your partner. (O.K., you fantasize about that, naturally, but you know it takes two to change a relationship.)
You have different personality styles: One of you leads with facts and analysis and the other with feelings.
You believe in consulting experts who can help you improve your life. You may already be in the habit of calling on financial planners, parenting coaches, or personal trainers to teach you specialized skills it would take a long time to develop on your own. You see investing in expert help as a key approach to dealing with a complex world.
If any of this sounds like you, my services might be a good fit for you.