Marriage Counseling Expectations
Starting marriage counseling can be a scary undertaking. Knowing what to expect can help remove some of the uncertainty and fear.
Dr. Edwards has completed the Levels I -III training in Gottman Method Couples Therapy and uses the Gottman Method when working with couples. Marriage counseling starts with an assessment of the current state of the marriage to evaluate the current strengths and challenges of the marriage and each partner's perceptions of what is working and not working in the relationship. This is usually done through a joint session and an individual session with each person.
Couples may be asked to fill out The Gottman Relationship Checkup, which assesses the strength of the marital friendship, the nature of conflict and its regulation, the level of trust and commitment in the relationship, (part of Gottman's Relationship House) and the potential barriers to treatment, to name a few.
After the assessment and The Gottman Relationship Checkup are completed, goals for counseling will be set. The number of counseling sessions a couple needs depends on the goals selected for counseling, the successful integration of new behaviors, and life issues that come up during the counseling process.
Usually, a minimum of 10-12 sessions after the assessment is recommended to give the couple time to learn necessary skills to change old patterns of emotional reaction and behavior.