01. Couples Therapy
Face to Face or Online Couples Therapy Sessions
Gottman Method Couples Therapy is an evidence based approach to couples therapy based on more than 40 years of research by Dr John Gottman into what makes relationships work. This approach has been demonstrated through rigorous research to be effective in creating positive and lasting change in relationships and is widely regarded as one of the best approaches to couples therapy. You can read more about the research and history behind The Gottman Method at https://www.gottman.com/about/the-gottman-method/.
At Sunshine Coast Couples Clinic we understand the longing we all have to feel good about the relationship we are in and how painful it can be when despite how hard we try, things just seem to get worse. Most couples feel anxious about beginning couples therapy and if this is you please feel free to ask questions or let us know about any specific concerns you or your partner may have. Most people feel more comfortable once they have come to the initial session and started the process.
Gottman Method Couples Therapy involves an assessment phase to be completed before treatment commences. This phase is very important as it helps us gain a thorough understanding of your presenting issues, along with both your individual history and your history as a couple. This in turn informs us of the specific areas we need to place our focus on to help you improve your relationship. Along with the assessments conducted by your therapist, you will both also complete the online Gottman Connect Relationship Checkup which provides us with comprehensive information about your relationship. Once your assessment is complete you both then attend a feedback session in which we will discuss the results of the assessment with you, introduce you to the Gottman research and model through the lens of your relationship and identify our shared goals for the treatment phase. We will also provide you with all of the information you need to be fully prepared for the treatment process. Please contact our clinic for further information about the process and cost of the assessment phase as it differs slightly between our therapists.
The treatment phase is specifically tailored to your unique needs as a couple and driven by the issues identified by the during the assessment process. Treatment is about the two of you developing better patterns of communication which are more positive and enable you to have better conversations and manage conflict in a way that brings increased connection. You will also learn about behaviours you may both doing that could be harming your connection and alternative ways of interacting that will strengthen your bond and bring you closer.
Research demonstrates that intensity in treatment generally results in more rapid and more sustainable change, particularly early on. To fast track your relationship recovery it is often useful to engage in some longer appointments of maybe 2 or 3 hours length. At first sessions are a minimum of weekly but after several treatment sessions when things have stabilised they can be spaced further apart. When we book in a new couple we book a series of appointments for you to ensure you can get through the assessment and feedback process and well in to treatment without needing to wait weeks or months between appointments.
Please note: Medicare rebates under a Mental Health Plan are not available for Couples Therapy. If you have private health insurance we recommend checking with your insurer as you may be eligible for rebates.