Let’s face it – relationships and marriage can be difficult. In working with you I will care about your relationship using my training and experience to help you make it the relationship you want.
“For one human being to love another: That is perhaps the most difficult of all our tasks; the ultimate, the last test and proof, the work for which all other work is but preparation.”– Rainer Maria Rilke
Creating and maintaining intimacy with another person can be our greatest challenge and our greatest reward in life. It takes focus and attention and at times, working through some difficult issues and emotions.
Couples work is the part of my work I’m most passionate about. I truly believe that good relationship creates Good around it. I believe that the answers to many of our world’s problems are in learning how to create and maintain healthy relationship. I don’t believe we can expect to create peace in the world when we can’t at home. As they say about charity…
When a relationship heals and changes for the better, so do the individuals within it (and again – affects those around them!).
We tend to partner ourselves with others that have important aspects of our original caretakers. We “marry” our unresolved issues. Rather than being a negative thing, I see it as being very positive: the intention, I believe, is to heal and to grow – to get it right this time with someone who reminds us of our original caretakers in some way.
When I work with a couple I look at that aspect of their relationship. What our partner wants is usually exactly what we need to do to grow as well.
I assess the way a couple communicates. I teach simple but powerful things like: “I” messages, not assuming you know the other person’s intention, and the power of a request vs. a criticism.
I also assess the pattern of a couple’s interaction; one such pattern can be “the Victim Triangle”. This involves one partner behaving as helpless Victim while the other behaves as Rescuer or Perpetrator. Often, each takes turns playing each role. I work with the couple to interact more authentically and in a healthier way, regardless of their interaction pattern.
To have healthy relationship, there needs to be individual health. Individual dysfunction will always play out in relationship. And so I pay attention to that, and work on individual issues that are affecting the couple.
I am an Advanced Certified Imago Couples Therapist. I have found Imago Couples Therapy to be the best model there is in terms of understanding relationship functioning. Even better, I have found it to be the most practical and skill-based therapy there is for couples. It teaches ways to communicate, ways to create safety in your relationship, and how to restore passion. And now it’s available through my work in Lancaster or Lititz!
While the list to the right is a great guide to assessing whether your relationship is in trouble, it is also important to know that the Imago work I do teaches skills that are important for any intimate relationship. The insights and practices it offers can deepen and strengthen any intimate relationship. I believe that if every committed couple learned these skills, they would not face the likelihood of breakup that most couples face today.
Therefore, it’s also important to me to help newly committed couples gain the skills they need to navigate the inevitable “bumps” that happen in relationship. With those skills they can prevent sabotaging their connection. “An ounce of prevention is worth pound of cure!”
Imago therapy is based on the work of Harville Hendrix, PhD and Helen LaKelly Hunt, PhD and their book – Getting the Love You Want. For more information, visit the website www.gettingtheloveyouwant.com