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Is Consensual Nonmonogamy Right for Your Clients?

...And Why Nonmonogamous Couples Tend to Avoid Couples Therapists Like the Plague

Margaret Nichols • 2/12/2018 • No Comments

By Margaret Nichols - In past decades, the only alternatives to involuntary celibacy in a relationship were affairs or divorce. But increasingly, people, including therapists, are recognizing there’s another option: consensual nonmonogamy. The idea isn’t new, but nonmonogamy is threatening to a lot of therapists for the same reason it’s threatening to most people: we instinctively want to believe that these unconventional relationships are flawed.

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What Attunement Really Looks Like

Step One: Confronting Your Own Limitations

Molly Layton • 2/1/2018 • 1 Comment

By Molly Layton - The longer I practice, the more I'm struck with the importance of tolerant, hovering attentiveness that looks, Janus-faced, both outwardly at the client and inwardly toward the therapist's own processes.

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Couples Therapy with One Partner: Can It Work?

Creating the Beginnings of a "Solution Avalanche"

Michele Weiner-Davis • 1/11/2018 • 2 Comments

By Michele Weiner-Davis - How is it possible to do couples therapy with just one partner? We clinicians communicate our presuppositions about people and how they change when we do our work. If we begin therapy with a "this is better than nothing" attitude, we undoubtedly broadcast a pessimistic message about the possibilities for change.

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The Core of Couples Therapy

Why Homework is So Important, and Six Ways to Make Sure Your Clients Do It

David Treadway • 12/11/2017 • 2 Comments

By David Treadway - Over the years, the couples in my practice who’ve actually done homework exercises have reported communicating better and being more affectionate and more supportive of each other than couples who haven’t. To make sure I’m successful in motivating them, I use these six techniques.

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Using Mindfulness When Relationships Fail

Three Steps to Help Male Clients Tolerate Emotional Intensity

Karen Kissell Wegela • 6/29/2017 • No Comments

By Karen Kissell Wegela - When men come into therapy, typically in a crisis after a partner has just ended a relationship, they have an opportunity to learn not only how to communicate more personally, but also to discover how much they've become estranged from their own inner life. Therapeutic work with these clients has three parts.

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VIDEO: What Therapy and Surgery Have in Common

Bill Doherty on Crafting the Right Language for the Right Therapy Outcome

William Doherty • 5/31/2017 • No Comments

Choosing the right words to open and close therapy sessions is one of the most important skills a clinician can master. But very few of us were taught how to do it. In this video clip, Bill Doherty explains how to jump start therapy from the very first minute of the very first session.

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Working with Cross-Cultural Couples

...And Why It's Not Necessarily Wrong to Take Sides

Kirsten Lind Seal • 5/29/2017 • No Comments

By Kirsten Lind Seal - Given how likely it is that as a therapist you’ll have cross-cultural couples come to you for support with their relationship, it’s important to know how best to help them navigate not only the usual communication and intimacy issues, but also the unique challenges that many cross-cultural couples face that aren’t always addressed in therapy.

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Helping Struggling Couples Find Their Sexual Style

A Guide to the Four Types: Traditional, Soulmate, Emotionally Expressive, Complementary

Barry McCarthy • 5/9/2017 • No Comments

By Barry McCarthy - What is a sexual style? It has to do with recognizing how different elements of a couple's sexual experience form a pattern—their way of initiating sex, how they pleasure each other and engage in erotic scenarios, the role of intercourse in their lovemaking, the afterplay scenarios they prefer, and the meaning sex has for them and its place in their relationship. In my clinical work, the vast majority of couples tend to fall within one of four styles.

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From the Mind's Story to the Body's

Learning to Sit with Physical Sensations Brought on by Conflict

Molly Layton • 5/2/2017 • 1 Comment

By Molly Layton - Even with two people sitting quietly, an interpersonal space isn't an empty space—it's alive with a peculiar quality. These days, in certain intractable situations, I keep discovering how much getting couples to focus on the immediacy of their bodily sensations can change the entire flow and direction of what takes place in my office.

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The Two Essential Ingredients for a Loving, Long-Lasting Relationship

John Gottman Shares the Latest Research from his Love Lab

John Gottman • 1/16/2017 • No Comments

By John Gottman - What the latest research from my lab is telling us is that trust and commitment are both the key ingredients for being in love with your partner for a lifetime, and for having your marriage be a safe haven. These are the ingredients for not just loving your partner, but being in love with your partner.

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