Couples Therapy

Couples Therapy


Working with couples and intimate partners is a major focus of my practice and has been for more than 16 years now.  I use a variety of well-researched approaches, including Emotionally Focused Therapy and mindfulness based techniques, but my primary focus at this time is using Gottman Method Couple Therapy (GMCT).  Based on more than 30 years of research with more than 3000 couples, GMCT uses observation of the “masters of relationships” – those in happy, long-lasting relationships – to inform its model of what makes for a healthy, secure partnership:  The Sound Relationship House.

Sound Relationship House

I have taken all three levels of Gottman Method training, and am currently seeking certification in GMCT under the consultation of Gottman Master Trainer Michael Basta.

How do we begin the couple therapy process?

Gottman Method Couple Therapy begins with three simple steps:

  1. A joint meeting, where I learn what concerns bring you to therapy, and get the history of your relationship. I ask each person to fill out some relationship assessments and bring them to the next meeting.
  2. Individual meetings for each person, where I get more of your individual history.
  3. A joint feedback meeting, where I give you my impressions of the strengths of your relationship and the areas for growth, and we decide where to start our work.

Thousands of meetings with couples have taught me that this process allows us to start the “real work” on your issues faster than any other approach.  With a clear picture of what works and where you’re stuck, we can fast forward through the early parts of therapy and get down to addressing what brought you to therapy to begin with.

When is the right time to come for couple therapy?

Every couple therapist in the business will tell you: we wish people would come in sooner, because it would make our work easier and take FEWER SESSIONS.  Most couples put off therapy until problems have gotten so bad, they are well into the Distance and Isolation Cascade that strongly predicts breakup or divorce.

But here are some good reasons to seek help from a couple therapist:

  1. When you feel stuck in the same arguments that come up over and over without ever getting resolved.
  2. When you and your partner seem to be on “opposite teams” all the time, instead of feeling like it is “Team Us against life’s problems.”
  3. When you find it hard to talk directly about what you are thinking or feeling without getting into a fight.
  4. When you start to feel disconnected from one another, like you’re on “parallel tracks.”
  5. When the relationship isn’t what you had hoped for.
  6. When you find yourself ruminating on past hurts that never seem to heal, even minor ones.
  7. When you feel like you can never “get it right” with your partner – you always disappoint or frustrate them somehow.
  8. When you find yourself wondering “could I do better with another partner?”

Send me a message, and let’s get started!


drsaddison@gmail.com

510-599-5467

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