Though many couples seek counselling in a state of crisis, couples therapy can be useful at various stages of a relationship to gain insight into patterns, strengths, and ways of being. The responsibility of a couples’ counsellor is to the relationship itself, so both partners are offered equal attention and understanding throughout the process.

Although therapists may take different approaches based on various theoretical orientations, effective couples therapy typically shares a few key elements. The first is helping partners gain insight into, and new perspectives on, their relationship. The purpose is to help couples see each other, and their interactions, in more adaptive ways. Couples therapy also works to modify dysfunctional behavior, and alter patterns of relating to one another that do not serve the couple. Closely related to behavior is communication styles and habits, and the fine-tuning of effective patterns of communication, especially during conflict.

Couples Counselling Approach

I hope to work closely with you to assist in decreasing emotional avoidance by helping clients lean into their emotional experiences. At times I use attachment-based approaches which include sharing the view that partners carry emotional wounds from childhood which impact their adult relationships, which can lead to working with couples to identify and reconcile unmet needs. Other times I may use a behaviourally-based approach which theorizes that adults may fear to express their feelings because they did not receive positive reinforcement in the past. Regardless, both theoretical perspectives work towards helping clients to create a safe container within the relationship to name and express their true feelings. Lastly, I will work towards promoting strengths to build resilience and draw the couples’ attention to aspects of the relationship that are working well.

Ultimately, the goal of counselling is to empower couples to affect change and facilitate healthy ways of relating to one another, for the purposes of greater intimacy and connection.

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