“We are never as vulnerable as when we love”- Sigmund Freud.
The road to falling in love and getting married is a wonderful, romantic and life changing experience. To expect that the romance and butterflies might continue on the long term in your relationship, is unrealistic. To grow into a mature, engaged, loving and emotionally connected relationship can be a rocky, but very exciting journey!! Research indicates that couples in a caring relationship, lives longer that single adults. They enjoy better health due to a strong immune system. Read more on how to put the spark back in your relationship!
Dr. John Gottman, psychologist, has done research for the past 30 years on Couple relationships. After years of research in his Love Lab, he can predict with 91 % accuracy, by listening to couples for five minutes, whether a couple’s relationship will fail or succeed. This is based on the data he accumulated over all these years of studying couples’ behavior.
Relationship ruptures are inevitable, that is a sign of growth. Both partners bring different strengths and challenges into their relationship from their past relationships and family connections. Very often couples get stuck due to old emotional and behavioral patterns that worked in the family of origin relationship for them to stay safe, but cannot work in the closeness of an intimate loving relationship that needs emotional openness, accessibility, responsiveness and engagement. Every partner usually blames the other partner in the relationship, feeling that the problem will be solved if the other partner “just can be fixed”. The truth is, that Couple Therapy is not about casting blame or finding fault with a partner. The focus in Couple Therapy is to analyze the dynamic of the relationship on attachment, emotional connection, behavioral and communication level. The next phase is for the Therapist to help the couple to understand their stuck behavioral dynamics and help them to find a way out of their “relational quicksand.” The challenge for the couple is to resolve old wounds and learn new skills to connect emotionally without blame and criticism, to stimulate intimacy, joy and happiness in their relationship.
Couple therapy can help you to analyze your relationship patterns, clarify your own emotional and behavioral obstacles that might prevent growth in your relationship and introduce you to new insight, understanding, empathy and strategies on how to create real healing for you and your partner
At the Child & Family Counselling Center, Sophia can help you to develop a secure foundation, for your relationship to flourish. She has integrated the work of all the leading researchers in the field of Couple Therapy, like Susan Johnson, Ellyn Bader, Peter Pearson and John Gottman, to support Couples to create real, lasting changes in their relationship. Research of Susan Johnson indicated that couples that completed Emotional Focused Couple Therapy (EFT), has a 90 % chance for success in their marital relationship. Sophia guide couples to learn what is obstructing them to emotionally reconnect and how to restore their trust in each other and in their relationship. Clients learn how to communicate on a deeper, respectful level and propagate growth, intimacy and individuation in their relationship
The core of the couple’s relational foundation is threatened by infidelity. Everyone these day seems to only look for the romance in a relationship, but totally overlooks the core ingredients of a real intimate emotionally connected couple relationship. These qualities are trust, emotional attunement, emotional vulnerability and emotional accessibility. If you have been cheated on, are tempted to cheat, or have cheated on your partner.
Families with children of all ages, can struggle to provide a family framework that can work for every individual in the family to feel loved, respected and valued. Family system dynamics is very similar to organizational system dynamics and therefore family values, beliefs, goals, and emotional balances needs to be revisited when family conflict arises. Conflict is usually the red flag that the system might need to adapt in a way to balance the changes and growth that the members of the family brings into the family. Sometimes a job change, an illness, divorce or the loss of a loved in the family can bring significant stress and conflict in the relational dynamics of the family. Favoritism, emotional exclusion, or insensitive remarks towards a particular member of the family reflects power imbalances in the family which, is the unhealthy soil where mental health problems can develop and grow for life. Secrets, lies and a lack of transparent communication, combined with power imbalances, are all relational problems that need to be dealt with early in the family relationship.
The importance of a healthy family system as the emotional foundation for parents as well as children and teens to develop in healthy, confident and successful individuals cannot be overemphasized. A family, like every organization, has to adapt their strategies and boundaries and sometimes revisit their goals to ensure that there is enough safety, love, respect, responsibility and acceptance for every family member to grow to their full, healthy potential.
Step Parent Families
Getting adjusted to a new family and newfound family ties can take a while to get used to. Parents or children may still be in grief or other stressors may be in their lives. This can often lead to severe stress and conflict for Step-Parent Families, which might threaten family relationships. Power struggles may develop when parents and step parents are not on the same page with discipline. Children can start to manipulate to get their way.
Sophia can guide you with her guidance, knowledge and experience to steer your family through the stormy relational waters, towards calm, healthy, respectful communication and cooperating relationships in your family.