Couples Specialists

Yes we’ve specialized in helping couples since 2003. Yes we’ve trained in multiple models and techniques. And yet, it often seems that having a transformed relationship as a couple is why we are able to bring loving presence and full aliveness to the couples that seek us out. We don’t see our own challenges as couple as a “psychological” problems but rather as a challenges to living in full aliveness together. Why work with one of us?

couples specialists

Specialized Training

Working with couples is very different from working with individuals. The skill-set, the whole mindset is  different. As couples specialists, we are actively engaged in structuring sessions.

We have been actively immersed in the field of couples work since 2001 when we began training in Imago Relationship Therapy and each completed the 96 hour certification. In 2006, we completed Gottman‘s level I Clinical training. We continued to study and incorporate into our practice the evolving work of Sue Johnson, Stephen PorgesDan Siegel and others including Esther Perel, Terry Real, Emily Nagoski and Tammy Nelson.

From 2014-2017 we attended Hedy Schleifer’s amazing and powerful 3 year 140 hour Encounter Centered Couples Therapy International Master Class in Washington DC as well as doing a 2 day intensive with Hedy. Our Couples Intensives are primarily an outgrowth of Hedy’s Encounter Centered training but often include elements of other modalities as needed.

In 2016 we attended Deb Dana‘s 6 Month Rhythm of Regulation Seminar here in Maine on the application of Stephen Porges Polyvagal work. We continue to find this Polyvagal perspective to be an important way for couples to view their struggles through the non-pathologizing lens of autonomic nervous system dys-regulation.  We continue to attend a variety of trainings but have gravitated toward Internal Family Systems (IFS) which has involved not only continuing education courses but also our own IFS therapy.

couples specialists

Experience

Our own relationship continues to be the most important “lab” for understanding relationships. Imagine for a moment what it would be like to sit with couples and have to face challenges and issues that you yourself have not learned to navigate with your partner. So to be a couples therapist is to be in a state of ongoing evolution as a person and as a partner. There is simply no substitute for this kind of experience.

Since couples therapy has been the focus of our work for so long, we are comfortable with and routinely help people who are struggling with:

  • affairs & addictions
  • parenting challenges
  • sexuality and intimacy
  • blended family challenges,
  • infertility & adoption
  • health & financial challenges
  • loneliness and general loss of connection.

Session Length

The marital research is clear that 75 minute sessions are the absolute minimum session length to achieve effective results, particularly when we are in distress as a couple. After working for many years within the 50-minute insurance window, we currently only see couples for 2 hours (self-pay). As specialists, we find this to be an optimal block of time within which deep work can effectively. AT times it’s very helpful to work for a few hours, take a lunch break and spend a few more hours together. This may initially sound crazy exhausting but our perception of time shifts when you enter the zone together of curiosity and deep work.