Couples & Family Counselling

Building Trust, Empathy, and Communication


I have many years of experience working with both couples and families, using a non-judgemental relational therapy approach that engages family members to develop deeper awareness and empathy for each other. Contact me if you want to bring more conscious joy and a renewed commitment to your relationship, or want to work through issues of lost trust or alienation or to find healthy ways to let go of a relationship that is broken. In my work with couples and families, I welcome all ages, genders and cultures, and am comfortable working with both conventional and non-conventional family configurations.

Ways Counselling Can Help

  • Process and resolve depression and/or anxiety
  • Build confidence and self-esteem
  • Overcome conflicts and strengthen your relationship
  • Address relationship issues including communication, conflict, emotional intimacy, sexual intimacy, infidelity (including internet affairs), infertility, child/teen-rearing and blended families
  • Learn to understand and manage emotions
  • Quieten your mind and stop obsessive thinking
  • Develop effective communications with others
  • Manage or eliminate stress
  • Overcome addiction
  • Acquire a calm and centred approach to life
  • Stop negative thoughts and negative self-talk
  • Process and resolve previous life issues
  • Set and achieve life goals
  • Find purpose and meaning for your life

Consider these questions:

  • Have you or your partner recognized an increase in the frequency or intensity of arguments?
  • Have you started to talk to friends or family about problems in your relationship?
  • Are you having conflicts or disagreements with your partner over the same issue, without adequate resolution?
  • Have you recently asked a lawyer or done any research regarding the process of separation or divorce?
  • Have you noticed a decrease in physical intimacy?
  • Has a person outside of your relationship negatively impacted the connection you have with your partner?
  • Have you or your partner been diagnosed with a Mood Disorder?
  • Do you or your partner engage in Addictive behaviour?
  • Do you have any concerns regarding the health and well-being of yourself, your partner and/or your relationship?

If you answered "yes" to any of these questions, then it may be time to make an appointment with a qualified professional to explore these situations in more detail.

Couples Therapy and Marriage Therapy Issues

  • Abandonment or Avoidant behaviour
  • Addictions
  • Affairs
  • Anger
  • Anxiety, Depression and Mood Disorders
  • Attachment Injuries
  • Communication and Conflict Resolution
  • Coping Skills
  • Death, Dying, Disability or Chronic Illness (eg. of Child)
  • Emotional Healing
  • Job loss or employment stress
  • Life Cycle Transitions
  • Marital Crisis
  • Miscarriage
  • Parenting
  • Perfectionism
  • Power and Control
  • Relationship Issues
  • Self Awareness and Self Esteem
  • Other Awareness and Other Esteem
  • Separation / threat of divorce
  • Shame

In Couples or Marriage Therapy, I meet with both partners to understand difficulties in the relationship, including communication, problem solving, warmth, affection, and satisfying intimacy. Together, we work to understand those current and past systemic patterns of interaction "the dance" which interferes with the relationship and we look at ways to positively influence communication and intimacy to create a new way of being together. In the process, partners agree on goals for the relationship this can create a more satisfying, respectful, supportive, loving and intimate relationship. Both individuals grow and expand as they move toward achieving their mutual goals. Usually we meet weekly or bi-weekly to identify the patterns creating disconnection, and to heal attachment injuries and restore connection.

You might have imagined life with your partner would always be passionate and fulfilling and that you would forever share a deep emotional bond. Sadly, many couples get stuck in unsatisfying and distant relationships.

Losing our connection with our partner jeopardizes our sense of security. When we get stuck in vicious cycles of blame and defensiveness, we experience a primal feeling of panic, or we may lash out in anger, or simply withdraw in helplessness and despair.

Through an Emotionally-Focused Therapy (EFT) approach, we help couples restore the secure, loving bond they once shared by together identifying, then changing, the destructive patterns of interaction that distance and divide.

Whereas before, talking about important issues might have escalated into conflict or created distance and resentment, we structure your interactions in session so that you can have difficult conversations in a way that actually deepens your connection and enables you to grow and evolve as a couple.

EFT is an empirically validated approach, backed up by hundreds of studies showing that it can repair relationships, deepen intimacy and create a more satisfying relationship.

Therapy for Child and Family

In family therapy the participants could be children, adults, or both. In families with children still at home, frequently the identified problematic issues of one individual of a family are intertwined with the well being of other members of the family. Including all members or the applicable members of the family in therapy can create healing for everyone especially as it pertains to family conflict. Sometimes I will meet with a child and a parent, or multiple children and a parent, or parents with a child, or children. In families with adult children no longer living at home, then I can meet with an adult chid with a parent or parents, or also with siblings healing a divide. Usually we meet weekly or bi-weekly to calm tensions, or restore connection, with a goal of remaining connected as a family at every stage of life.

More on Emotionally-Focused Therapy (EFT)

Designed for couples, modified for families, and applies to all individual's relationships...

Individuals who are caught in an emotional dance, experience repetitive unsatisfying patterns of behaviour driven by conflicted emotions. The emotional "dance" eventually creates disconnection and increasing polarization as the individuals push each other away with their reactions to the negative emotion. Typically one partner will become pursuant and the other will become avoidant, although sometimes both become pursuant or both become avoidant. Regardless of the dance steps, the couple’s inability to communicate or resolve hard feelings worsens over time driving increased levels of relational dissatisfaction, as one's reactions fuels the others negative emotions and vice versa.

The principles of Emotionally Focussed Therapy can be used for couples, family members, or for individuals to understand and breakthrough the confusion of a complex relational dynamic in any facet of life. It is based on Attachment Theory, and seeks to repair connection within relationships. The work begins by bringing understanding to the underlying emotional process which creates de-escalation, and then moves on to heal attachment injuries, bringing renewed connection, joy, and emotional freedom. Amongst these signs, we know therapy has been successful when it creates a "hold me tight" embrace.