Relationships, Dating and Intimacy:
Individuals & Couples Therapy
It's difficult to speak honestly about our relationships, especially in this highly curated age of social media. We may feel like we're failing or getting it wrong when our relationships have conflict or lack connection. The truth is, being in relationship with someone means that your buttons are going to be pushed, and it also means that at times, your connection might not flow as easily. Whether your relationship with your partner is feeling stuck, distant, or fraught with conflict, counselling can help identify and address the roots of the issue.
When we feel securely attached to our partners, our relationships feel open and loving, but many variables can interfere with secure attachment. Our earlier life experiences and attachment patterns create sensitivities that experiences and attachment patterns create sensitivities that can prime us to mis-read our partner's cues and to react with anger, withdrawal, or criticism when we doubt our connection. When I see couples together, I use Emotionally Focused Therapy, a widely researched attachment-based therapeutic method that was developed by Dr. Sue Johnson for use with couples. If you can imagine, couples counselling often feels like you are alternating a wide angle view of your relationship (big picture stuff like patterns, festering issues, your history, your partner's history) with a zoom lens (a close focus on the dynamic between the two of you as it's occurring in the room). While this can challenge you at times, this type of exchange ultimately helps you and your partner to understand one another better, highlight your values, and deepen your connection.
If you prefer to address your relationship concerns in individual counselling, without your partner present, I would support you in that and help you examine the patterns and responses that you are bringing to the dynamic. If it becomes clear that involving your partner is a necessary next step, we can discuss ways to do so.
What if my main relationship problem is that I'm single?
Not being in a relationship is also cause for distress for some, and I frequently see people in my practice who are experiencing issues with dating, break-ups, and intimacy issues. If you're in between partners, this is a very good time to be in therapy. Striking when the iron is cold allows us to take stock of your values, leverage your strengths, and figure out what these recurring barriers to connection are all about.