Let’s face it; couple’s therapy is a little scary! But the alternative can be even worse – an unhappy marriage. We realize that therapy is a difficult step, and want to make it as comfortable as possible for you while giving your relationship the care and attention it deserves. So let us begin by informing you of the process and the rationale for the way we do marriage counseling in Houston.
We have been trained by the leading relationship researcher, Dr. John Gottman, who learned a great deal about relationships by scientifically studying relationships for 40 years and counting. He, along with Dr. Julie Gottman, figured out how to fix a relationship, and designed a couples therapy method that is based on that research and really works. Dr. Don and Carrie Cole have been personally trained by the Gottmans and are excited to bring this scientific method of marriage counseling to Houston, TX. We have learned that before a therapist starts cutting into a relationship, they should assess what they are cutting into. So a necessary part of good treatment begins with a careful evaluation of the relationship.
We begin the assessment by meeting with both of you and listening to the struggles that you are currently facing. We explore with you the highs and lows of your life together and we observe how you discuss your problems. Next, we speak to each of you individually and learn about your background. We’re interested in finding out how emotions were managed in your family. Since we can’t do an MRI of a relationship, we ask you to fill out extensive questionnaires, which give us a great deal of information about how you relate to each other. We then compile all of this information to understand your situation, look at your relationship from the perspective of scientific research, and we share our findings with you.
In our therapeutic work together we focus on rebuilding your friendship and affection for each other. We work to regulate conflicts and understand them in a different way. We help couples repair old injuries, as well as develop a sense of meaning in their shared lives. We help you work on the relationship outside of the therapy office through the use of exercises which we believe are helpful tools to get your relationship back on track and to help it stay there.
We know that couples often make changes that last for a short while and then go back to old habits. So we work carefully with a couple to prevent any relapse by developing a plan to help prevent a recurrence of the same problems.
We offer couple counseling techniques based on the Gottman method which includes:
- A careful evaluation of each couple’s unique situation
- Therapy sessions focused on:
- Rebuilding friendship and affection
- Regulating conflict
- Repairing hurts
- Moving together into the future
- Homework exercises to strengthen the relationship
- Careful relapse prevention plan to bring about lasting change
Some couples struggle with special circumstances which contribute to their situation such as:
- Previous marriages
- Step family issues
- Extra-marital affairs
- Abuse history
- Emotional issues such as depression
We specialize in helping couples overcome those difficulties and find a greater sense of satisfaction in their lives and relationships. Contact us today to get started.