Couples Therapy

“Love doesn’t just sit there, like a stone; it has to be made, like bread;  remade all the time, made new.”

– Ursula K. Le Guin

Connect and Thrive Psychology offers couples therapy to partners at all stages of relationship health. Some of our couples feel secure in their relationship, but are interested in improving their connection and intimacy, in getting support with challenging life transitions, or in addressing ineffective communication patterns. Other couples reach out to us when they have been feeling “stuck” for some time. Partners report feeling hurt, unheard or distant from their significant other, and are unsure how to move past these difficulties. Relationships can be hard. 

Healthy partnerships must be regularly cultivated in order stand the test of time, but rarely are we given the opportunity to learn how to connect with each other well. Connect and Thrive Psychology aims to support couples in navigating this process. We help couples deepen and strengthen their connection, navigate obstacles and conflict, improve or refine their communication and resolve hurt. In essence, we help partners grow – both as individuals and as a team.

Couples therapy at our practice begins with a thorough and multilayered assessment. Your couples therapist will work to understand your relationship and personal histories, your strengths and struggles as a couple, as well as your current needs and goals. Your therapist will also observe your communication and consider whether it may have an impact on your collective ability to work through some of the difficulties you experience. Our assessments are followed by a feedback session, where you and your therapist will develop a nuanced understanding of the challenges before you. This conceptualization is designed in such a way that neither party is blamed for the relationship difficulties you experience. Rather, these are understood as a function of the way you interact.

Your assessment will be used to inform a concrete treatment plan for you and your partner, that aims to overcome the obstacles you experience and reach your relationship goals. Therapists at our practice are trained in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT), Emotion Focused Therapy for Couples (EFT-C) and Gottman method, and will draw on these approaches flexibly to develop a treatment plan that is well suited to you. For instance, in some cases a treatment plan may involve practical skill development and deliberate practice. In other cases, a more experiential approach may be recommended, where partners are guided in emotionally connecting with each other in a manner that is healing and corrective. In effect, partners are guided in learning or relearning how to “be” with each other in a positive, open, present-focused and supportive way.

Goals or concerns frequently addressed in couples therapy:

  • Improving communication
  • Deepening emotional, cognitive and physical connection
  • Enhancing resilience, especially in the face of important life changes (e.g., growing family, grief, major move, etc.)
  • Increasing alignment on goals
  • Ineffective or problematic communication patterns that challenge a couples’ ability to solve problems or that lead to conflict
  • Identifying and addressing problematic interactional styles that leave the couple feeling stuck, unheard or disconnected
  • Healing or resolving past or repeated hurt and emotional injuries
  • Difficulty with trust
  • Imbalance in power and control
  • Parenting stress
  • Difficulties that arise due to cultural differences
  • Challenges with in-laws or extended family

Our waitlist for couples therapy is closed at this time. Couples interested in working with a member of our team are welcome to check back in with us in the fall of 2023.