Emotionally Focused Couples Counseling

Emotionally Focused Couples Counseling Austin TexasEmotionally Focused Couples Counseling

Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy (EFT) is an empirically validated, evidence-based model and it is based mostly on the enormous body of attachment research and the continuously growing neuroscience research in emotions, processing, and more. EFT therapist do not simply offer cognitive, behavioral options but rather requires the EFT therapist to come closer in the connection with couples. (more…)

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Happy Couples Secret Relationship Weapon

Happy Couples Relationship Counseling Round Rock

Happy Couples Relationship Friendship

One of the most important keys to happy couples is that they have a friendship at their foundation. Friendship doesn’t mean that the couple won’t have arguments but it does give the a tool to keep the conflict from getting out of hand. For example, in a heated disagreement, one of the partner may say something or do something to defuse the level of tension such as smile, ask for a timeout to cool off, touch hands, ask to pray before going any further in the discussion, or other types of deescalation tools. Gottman calls this repair attempts. (more…)

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Strong Marriages Possess Shared Meaning

Strong Marriages Possess Shared Meaning marriage counseling denver

Shared Meaning Marriages Equals Strong Marriages

In the Gottman Marriage Research Institute, their research into happy marriages determined that strong marriages possess shared meaning. Partners that have a sense of shared meaning  support each other’s dreams, desires, and create a sense of purpose into their future. In this sense of shared meaning, they demonstrate respect and honor for each other. (more…)

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Sexual Addiction Triggers

denver sex addiction therapyIn my work with men that struggle with sexual addiction, we look at the number of triggers that often set him off. These triggers can include conflicts, negative emotions, certain stimuli, or stress that provoke a fantasy, sexualized feeling, or thought that leads to wanting to act out. It is often easy to identify some of the more tangible lust and sex triggers. Most sex addicts have created a many different forms of triggers as their addiction progressed. Here are some of the categories that I have found to be common from my work with men that struggle with sex or porn addiction. (more…)

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Demon Dialogues Destroys Marriages

Demon Dialogues Marriage CounselingDemon Dialogues Marriage Killer

In Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy (EFCT), Dr. Sue Johnson uses the term, “Demon Dialogues,” to describe the destructive cycles of conflict that many couples experience in their failing marriage. The first step in EFCT is to help a couple identify the damaging dance that they regularly have, when they have it, and each partner’s steps that escalates the conflict. (more…)

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Marriage Killer #7: Failed Repair Attempts

Marriage Killer: Failed Repair Attempts

Failed Repair Attempts Kill Marriages

Marriage counselors watch for the first five signs of trouble in a relationship (harsh startups, criticism, contempt, defensiveness, and stonewalling). With Stonewalling, comes flooding and body language as sub-killers of marriages. The 7th sign of a marriage in trouble is found by focusing on how the couple discuss a disagreement. (more…)

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Sexual Addiction Symptoms

Sexual Addiction Symptoms Counseling

Do You Show Sexual Addiction Symptoms?

Often men will come into their first counseling session questioning whether they have a sexual addiction or simply struggling with issues that every man struggles with. They will ask me, “Do I have a sexual addiction problem?” They are wanting to know sexual addiction symptoms and whether their behaviors match those symptoms. (more…)

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Marriage Killer #6: Body Language

Body language Marriage Counseling Denver Littleton

Reading Body Language Warning Signs

In Gottman’s relationship research, he found that a major warning sign to the survival of marriages is Body Language. When a couple begins to work through conflicts and issues, I watch for the body language of one or both partners. The wife may sit and immediately fold her harms as a way of protecting herself emotionally and the husband sits at the farthest end of the couch. As the discussion begins, I can see one spouse begin to clinch fists or eye brows turn inward while the other spouse seems to shrink into the couch. The conversation has a harsh startup and defensiveness and stonewalling quickly follow. (more…)

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Marriage Killer #5: Flooding

Flooding Marriage Killer Counseling DenverFlooding Kills Marriages

In counseling couples, it is common that the therapist will focus upon how they deal with anger and conflict. What the therapist might see in the couples interaction, is how one spouse uses criticism and contempt in communicating the anger or disagreement, while the other spouse seems not to be bothered. But the reality is that the spouse is stonewalling as protection against feeling mentally and physically overwhelmed. Essentially shutting down and blocking. Marriage killer number 5 is called, “flooding.” (more…)

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Marriage Killer #4: Stonewalling

Marriage Killer Stonewalling

Stonewalling Marriage Killer

When I work with couples and the conversation in the session begins with a harsh startup, in which both criticism and contempt are present, often one or both spouses will become defensive. One or both spouses will shut down, tune out, and detach from the session. Tuning out each other represents the fourth marriage killer and is called, “stonewalling.” Often repetitive stonewalling brings couples into marriage counseling because of the feeling of hopelessness. (more…)

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