Relational counseling involves an initial assessment with both members of the couple. Areas of conflict are identified, and each individual is asked for their perspective on the relationship difficulties. I often use the principles of John Gottman, PhD in couples counseling. This typically involves learning new methods of communicating, working on how to re-connect and strengthen intimacy, and to how to effectively resolve differences. Couples will learn how to validate each other, increase positive interactions, talk about difficult issues assertively, decrease defensiveness, and improve their sense of connection.
Another specialty of mine is providing therapy to couples in which one member is diagnosed with ADHD. I will provide education to the couple on how ADHD can impact marriages, what many couples experience when ADHD is present, and many specific steps and strategies for both the non-ADHD spouse and the ADHD spouse. Part of this therapy is learning what characteristics or behaviors are likely a result of ADHD and working towards more acceptance of this in the marriage. Another part of this therapy is working with both members of the couple on specific change strategies to help the ADHD spouse improve symptoms and the non-ADHD spouse learn how to respond more effectively to their spouse's symptoms when they occur.
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