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Inga-Britt Ostrom, MFT

Couple Therapy – a new beginning

By Inga-Britt Ostrom, LMFT

When the romantic phase of your relationship wanes and the honeymoon is over, you may argue more than you like to admit, you may feel increasingly distant from your partner, while yearning for closeness. You find that talking about sensitive problems often leads nowhere, except to your side of the bed. This does not mean that love is gone. Some individuals “put up with” the daily frustration; some deny their feelings; some leave the relationship, and others seek out couples therapy.

Creating lasting relationships

Studies show that couples therapy is effective in improving the quality of relationships and in supporting people to adjust to change. A relationship is not a static state between two unchanging people. Rather, the relationship shifts and grows, and like many others, I view relationship as a psychological and spiritual journey that acts as a catalyst for growth and transformation.

Would you and your partner benefit from couple therapy?

If you are motivated, have some understanding of your current issues, and want to improve your relationship, you are likely to benefit from therapy. In some cases, it may be necessary to do some individual work prior to engaging in couples work.

What can you expect from couple therapy?

Did you know that it is extremely rare that one partner is solely responsible for a flawed or damaged relationship? During treatment, you may be asked to accept responsibility for ways in which you too contribute to the difficulties or problems in your relationship.

During sessions, we will explore individual needs, expectations and differences. You will recognize how negative patterns and behaviors from childhood, or past relationships, are impacting your current situation. You will master new and effective communication skills. You will learn to express feelings such as anger and hurt directly, without hurting one another.

You will learn to deal with and resolve conflict openly, in ways that you may have not learned in the past, at home or at school. During treatment, partners learn to cultivate respect, patience and compassion toward each other.

Couple Counseling – an investment in your future

Many couples consider couples counseling their greatest investment. However, treatment may sometimes be difficult, extensive and costly. It takes courage and strength to ask for help and engage in self-exploration.

Progress and development

The rate at which partners make progress depends upon the level of motivation and severity of problems. During my work with couples I have gained profound respect for the people I have treated. They come with enthusiasm and readiness to work hard to restore or strengthen their relationship. I feel enormous gratitude as I see the rekindling of love .

Love has a chance to blossom, when Men and Women are able
to respect and accept their differences. – John Gray