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  • Sam DiFranco

Marriage Counseling At Star Point Counseling Center In Brandon Fl, And Tampa Fl.

The word marriage is thought to have originated around 1250–1300 CE from Middle English, describing a way to unite families. For centuries, arranged marriages were designed for economic reasons rather than love .

Early on, marriage was a practical approach for procreation, safety, and support. In today’s times, the concept of marriage involves practical, economical, social, psychological, and emotional aspects.

As the expectation of what a marriage is and should be has increased, the disappointment, disagreement, and struggle to meet all the expectations have also increased. Marriage counseling is a great solution to moderate the difference between expectations and reality within a relationship.

Marriage counseling is also called “couples counseling” and is designed to help resolve conflict and improve relationships (Mayo Clinic, 2020). It can be effective for all types of intimate relationships, regardless of sexual orientation or marital status.

Working with a therapist, couples learn skills like developing open communication, effective problem solving, and how to discuss differences rationally. Couples are counseled to talk about both the good and bad parts of the relationship, identify problems, and consider how things can improve.

Most therapists claim to take an “eclectic” approach to couples counseling, but there are specific, research-backed approaches that demonstrate efficacy (Holt-Lundstad, Birmingham, & Jones, 2008).

Emotion-Focused Therapy (EFT)

Emotion-Focused Therapy focuses on emotions and creating secure attachment, resilience, and healthy relationships.

This is most effective for couples impacted by traumatic stress, past emotional injuries, abuse, and severe health problems such as cancer.

Behavioral Couple Therapy

Behavioral couple therapy emphasizes behavior change by helping clients understand how behaviors impact those around them.

This therapy includes Integrative Behavioral Couple Therapy, which focuses on emotional acceptance and behavior change. It helps couples identify disturbed behavior patterns that are detrimental to the relationship. Once they are identified, couples can find new ways of interacting that are positive for their relationship.

Traditional Behavioral Couple Therapy focuses on developing more assertive communication and problem-solving skills.

The Gottman approach

The Gottman approach helps couples form stronger relationships using a model called the Sound Relationship House. This model is supported by over 40 years of research conducted by the Gottman Institute. The focus is on becoming emotionally intelligent couples, attuning to one another’s needs, and building a friendship in trust and commitment (Gottman, 2020).

Discernment counseling

This new approach to counseling addresses couples’ needs when one member is considering divorce (Nakonezny & Denton, 2008). The spouse who wants a divorce practices “leaning out,” while the one who wants to work on the relationship “leans in.”

The immediate goal is to clarify what each spouse is thinking rather than resolve marital problems. It is a brief counseling that helps determine if more intensive counseling is worth it.


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