My Approach to Helping
Thank you for considering Masterful Couples of Northern Virginia for relationship support. As a Certified Gottman Method Couples' Therapist, my commitment is to help couples build stronger friendships, manage differences respectfully, and support your hopes and dreams. I understand, above all, that every individual is capable of and deserves compassion and empathy, and therefore, greater love and health in your relationships.
There are 4 basic ideas that I believe are important to doing counseling right:
1. Working with couples requires different skills and training, from working with individuals. I have trained at the Gottman Relationship Institute, the premier training program in the nation for couples' counseling.
2. Counseling should be based on, and led by developments in, scientific research. Techniques based on research are proven to be more effective in helping couples make changes.
3. A good relationship between counselor and couple provides the necessary foundation for managing life changes.
4. Couples need to be willing and able to learn and apply a new and effective method of managing their perpetual issues.
The Gottman method of couples therapy is used to integrate leading-edge research on marriage into practical, down-to-earth counseling for couples. No other approach to couples therapy has relied on such detailed, comprehensive, scientific studies of why couples succeed or fail.
I received my training from the Gottman Institute. I have the unique combination of knowledge, skills and resources in conflict management and resolution, and in adult relationships struggling with ADD, depression, and anxiety. I am hard on the process and soft on the couple. I adhere to a non blame-based approach and teach my couples the same, using relationship enhancing evidence based tools. I welcome couples in distress who want to save their marriage after an affair has occurred in their relationship
More Info About My Practice
-- Proven tools to strengthen relationships are provided in an approach that is equally welcoming to all genders.
-- Free telephone consultation prior to initial session is offered to discuss your questions, my approach and process.
-- Bi-weekly 90-minute sessions with the option of an additional free 30 minutes replace weekly 45-minute sessions to reduce your travel time and other logistical challenges.
-- Flexibility with session scheduling
-- Thorough individual and relationship assessments and treatment plan are provided for all couples
-- Based on my training, experience and resources, unique skills and tools are offered for couples coping with relationship boundaries, attention deficit, hyperactivity, impulse control, depression, and anxiety challenges in their relationships.
Counseling training and education:
-- Successful completion of advanced trainings and supervision in couples therapy at the Gottman Institute
-- Graduate of Dr. Edward Hallowell's course in "ADD in 2005" and Dr. Daniel Amen's "Breaking Free" program in anxiety-depression
-- Licensed Professional Counselor
-- National Certified Counselor
-- Master's in education and human development, SUMMA CUM LAUDE, The George Washington University
-- Bachelor's in nonviolent conflict and change, SUMMA CUM LAUDE, Syracuse University
-- I began my work in conflict management in 1991 and clinical work in 1999.
What I Usually Need to Know to Help
Are you both ready to roll up your sleeves and really dig in and work on not only your relationship, but equally important, on yourselves as individuals? Are you both willing to learn how to accept more influence from one another? Are you committed to your relationship or are you looking for a way out? Are you both willing to spend the necessary time on your relationship throughout the treatment process?
Important Factors for Choosing a Therapist
Interview the provider...find out: 1. what is their educational background? 2. what is their licensing credential(s)? 3. what is their couples training; what is the training institute's credibility? 4. what is their method/approach - directive, client-centered, somewhere in-between? 5. any session scheduling flexiblity?