Couples Therapy & Marital Counseling

Are you experiencing any of the following in your relationship?

  • Communication problems, with one or both partners not feeling listened to or validated
  • Loss of the closeness or passion you once had
  • Arguing about the same issues over and over
  • A sense that you are drifting apart or leading parallel lives
  • Difficulty regulating emotions or managing anger
  • Betrayal of trust or other fidelity-related issues
  • Disagreements about finances, including spending or investments

Don’t sit by and watch your relationship deteriorate! Far too many people are suffering from relationship problems that could be corrected by learning powerful yet simple skills.

Begin With a Safe, Constructive Conversation

Couples are often afraid to talk things over for fear that emotions will get out of control or that both people will end up feeling hurt once again. That is why the first priority of effective couples therapy should be to provide you and your partner with the support and guidance you need so that you can begin a dialogue that feels safe, respectful and constructive.

Transform Conflict into Intimacy

Some couples worry that, because there is a lot of conflict in their relationship, couples therapy may not work for them. Yet conflict often provides the pivotal moment in couples therapy for achieving healing, personal growth and deeper intimacy.

Often couples with the strongest chemistry also experience the most challenging impasses, such as when the behavior of one person directly triggers the vulnerability of the other, which in turn leads to behavior that re-triggers the vulnerability of the first person, leading to escalating conflict.

Ironically, these classic impasses offer a unique opportunity for both people to finally feel heard, validated, supported and appreciated without triggering the other’s defensiveness or anger. (For more discussion on working with conflict, see “How to Transform Conflict into Intimacy” in the Resources section.)

Communicate in Ways That Get the Best Results

Thanks to the research of John Gottman, an internationally acclaimed author and clinician from Seattle, we now know much more about what makes relationships succeed or fail. For example, based upon his 30 years of research with 3,000 couples, Gottman is now able to predict with more than 90% accuracy whether a couple will divorce after observing them for just five minutes.

Using Gottman’s findings, it is possible to isolate and learn the communication skills that are characteristic of the most successful couples, and, equally important, to learn to avoid the communication traps that have been found to be most problematic. (See the Resources section for my article "A Relationship in Trouble: How to Reduce Negativity".)

With the right kind of support and coaching it is possible to communicate clearly, calmly and constructively on any topic. You can listen and express yourself more effectively, set boundaries, fight fairly, defuse tensions, compromise and resolve conflict.

“You do not need to be feeling great about each other to do the things that warm each other’s heart. What you do need is goodwill and a desire to have a loving relationship.” Ellen Wachtel, from her book 'We Love Each Other, But...'

Deepen Your Appreciation of Each Other

Finally, couples therapy is not just about reducing conflict or improving communication; it is also about building upon your strengths and deepening and further expressing your appreciation of each other.

Your relationship deserves to be honored and respected! At its best, couples therapy becomes an adventure, a chance to celebrate what is working in your relationship and to explore its greater potential.

For those who wish, I will introduce you to cutting-edge tools and strategies developed by John Gottman that are designed to strengthen the foundation of your relationship, as well as providing you with skills that you can use effectively for a lifetime. Even couples who feel that they have a good “foundation” may be surprised to find how powerful small changes can be in creating more passion, connection and love. (See the Resources section for my article "Reviving Your Relationship by Strengthening the Positives".)

To ask questions or set up an appointment call 212-439-4102 or contact me by email at eli@relationshiprealizations.com.

180 East 79th Street, Suite 1A
New York, NY 10075

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“I would highly recommend Relationship Realizations to anyone who wants to save a troubled marriage. Eli provided us with many wonderful exercises that we could do at home to help us deepen our connection with each other. She emphasized and found creative ways to build upon the strengths of our relationship — something that did not seem to be happening so much in therapies that some of my friends described. We came very close to giving up, but now we are stronger than ever and operating as a true team.”

 

L.C.

 

 

"Thanks to our couples therapy, my beautiful girlfriend has become my wife. Our courtship was stormy at times, but Eli believed in our relationship and helped us find the deeper meanings that were behind our conflicts. Even when we started out fighting, we would usually come out of therapy feeling happier and more connected. Eli always gives me a straight answer and, while being completely supportive, also knows how to challenge me if I need it."

 

D.S.

 

 

“After watching countless videotapes of couples fighting, I can guarantee you that most quarrels are really not about whether the toilet lid is up or down or whose turn it is to take out the trash. There are deeper, hidden issues that fuel these superficial conflicts and make them far more intense and hurtful than they would otherwise be... Once you understand this, you will be ready to accept one of the most surprising truths about marriage: Most marital arguments cannot be resolved...

 

This doesn’t mean there is nothing you can do if your relationship has been overrun by conflict. But it does mean that the typical conflict-resolution advice won’t help. Instead, you need to understand the bottom-line difference that is causing the conflict between you — and to learn how to live with it by honoring and respecting each other. Only then will you be able to build shared meaning and a sense of purpose into your marriage.”

 

From The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work by John Gottman