Marriage & Couples Counseling
RESOLVE CONFLICT · BUILD TRUST · REGAIN VITALITY
• You fight the same fight over and over
• You fight frequently without resolution
• You both feel resentment and anger
• The relationship lacks emotional connection
• There’s been infidelity or an affair
• You’re struggling, unhappy and depressed
• You feel disconnected and alone
• Should I stay or should I go?
• Thinking about Discernment Counseling?
• Need help deciding whether to divorce?
• Communication has broken down
• Your relationship lacks sexual intimacy
• You’re considering divorce or separation
RELATIONSHIP TROUBLE – Long Island Counseling Services is able to help. You know your relationship is in trouble when neither of you wants to meet the needs of the other. Eventually, the relationship becomes mutually withholding and antagonistic, and fails to offer the satisfaction you had hoped for. The stress of a joyless relationship adds to the trouble. It makes it difficult to imagine healing without professional help.
DEALING WITH CONFLICT – Each couple struggles uniquely with conflict. Some suffer with noisy conflict. Others with malignant silence. Differences are poorly negotiated. You’re fighting the same fight over and over again. Each partner participates in the loss of mutual satisfaction. It’s not surprising that sexual and emotional intimacy decline or recede into the background.
IMPROVE COMMUNICATION – Professional couples counseling and marital therapy is comprehensive. It is careful to untangle who needs what, and why both participants feel deprived, aggrieved, angry and in need of reparation. The therapist takes an equitable position, aligning herself not with individual, but with the potential health of the relationship. Very carefully, each partner’s wishes and disappointments are given voice, and the couple learns the art of empathy and compassion for self and other.
SEX THERAPY – Frequently, sexual issues are included in this work. Impotence, disinterest, fantasy, infidelity and the entire, complex panoply of erotic life are part of the dialogue. Similarly, other life issues are also included in comprehensive marriage and couples counseling. Big areas of conflict include money, family and children. As the couple develops new bonds, areas of conflict and areas of sexual difficulty can begin to enter the treatment and gain resolution.
COUPLES OF ALL AGES & LIFESTYLES – Under the guidance and compassion of a good counselor, most partnerships can regain their vitality and meaningfulness. For over 20 years, I’ve worked with partners of all ages, genders, lifestyles, including, single-sex partnerships, male-female partnerships, and high-conflict couples.
UNDECIDED: SHOULD I STAY OR SHOULD I GO? – Discernment Counseling is specifically designed treatment for the struggling couple who may be on the brink, but who are not yet sure whether to get a divorce or whether to work on repairing the marriage.
THE MARRIAGE IS ON THE BRINK – Typically the struggling partners are not in agreement about next steps but tension is high because of the uncertainty. Often referred to as a mixed-agenda couple, one partner is typically ‘leaning out’ and ready to call it quits. The other partner is ‘leaning in’ and desperate to hold on to the marriage. With one partner ambivalent and the other desperate, the relationship feels like it’s on the brink. Discernment Counseling is especially tailored to reduce the tension and help this couple decide which path to choose: to divorce or to engage in an intensive round of treatment and reparative relationship counseling.
DISCERNMENT COUNSELING – Treatment includes a maximum of 5-6 sessions before the couple typically feels equipped to make a decision with clarity. In the process, the counseling focuses on helping the partners develop a deeper understanding of themselves and of what has happened in their marriage. There is an emphasis on learning how each partner has participated in bringing about the marital discord and how each partner has contributed to the difficulties they face. Finally, there is also an emphasis on fully exploring the consequences of either option—divorce or reconciliation.