Couples therapy Is it right for us?Patient & Families
There are so many reasons why people come to couples therapy. And there are so many types and stages of relationships that can benefit from couples therapy. You may be in a new relationship or have been in a relationship for several decades. You may be married or not married. You may be brand new to relationship work or a seasoned couple.
Couples therapy is designed to look at the relationship as the patient. A couple’s therapist will listen to each person in the relationship, but the goals will be goals for the relationship, not the individual.
Sometimes a couple comes to therapy and what’s unpacked in that initial session is more appropriate for individual therapy. Your therapist’s clinical recommendation may be to start with individual therapy and come back to couples when some of those individual goals have been met.
If you are ready to try couples therapy, it’s important to understand that any outcome is possible and nothing is guaranteed. Couples therapy is about taking a closer look at what has become challenging in the relationship. It’s about being open to observations about your relationship and being willing to decide how you would like to meaningfully address them together. Through couples therapy you may gain insight into each other’s communication styles, trust, emotional regulation and intimacy, and sex related issues. Ultimately, the goal is for you and your partner to have a safe space to explore your relationship. When we do it on our own, that exploration can end in arguments, quiet defeat, or just never take off at all due to the business of everyday life. A couple’s therapist will lead that exploration and guide you through all that you uncover, step by step, at a pace that feels manageable and safe for you.
Lauren Pena MFT, ATR, LMFT # 130687
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