Aging, the birth and growth of children, crises, deaths, pandemics, economic upheavals, and other life changes require that people in relationships revisit and sometimes re-negotiate the terms of their commitment. Most couples face these challenges successfully without a therapist, but occasionally couples gets stuck, overwhelmed, or feel hopeless figuring out what to do. Therapy is useful to couples who are interested in an outside, seasoned perspective and the strategies a professional can bring to help them hear each other differently.
I help couples and families. I like to focus on how psychological challenges evolve within interpersonal systems.
One of the draws to couples therapy for me is the chance to provide an affirmative, creative, strengths-based, sex-positive, reflective space for couples who want to work on their relationships or contemplate serious marital transition. I help couples explore ways of maintaining, invigorating, and re-inventing their partnerships across the lifespan, discovering the unique adaptations that are going to work for them, to allow both individuals to thrive. I work with same-sex, heterosexual, and mixed orientation couples.
My framework as a therapist has a strong grounding in interpersonal neurobiology and the science of resilience. For most of my career I have worked with people impacted by past trauma and extreme adversity, so I am accustomed to exploring how those legacies play out in intimate partnerships. The essential message of interpersonal neurobiology is:
- Our brains and nervous systems are tribal and deeply and implicitly interconnected.
- We have a deep need for closeness with other people (and other people are the greatest threats we experience).
- Past hurts and injuries can heal through healthy, meaningful bonds to others.
I believe people can navigate challenging, sometimes emotionally fraught, terrain as a couple more harmoniously when they understand their own brain-heart-gut dialogue and the ways it plays out in relationship and see and hear each other more accurately.