Couples Therapy

“To make a relationship last: Couples must become better friends, learn to manage conflict, and create ways to support each other’s hopes and dreams” ~Dr. John Gottman, PhD

Your romantic relationship with your partner can be one of the most fulfilling parts of your life.  However, when feelings of loneliness or bitterness begin to erode the foundation of your relationship, the effects can be devastating!  A strong relationship often sets the tone for a happy life and can help mediate harmful effects of life difficulties including anxiety, depression, or even chronic illnesses!

Your relationship is important and it is worth fighting for!  In my work with couples, I utilize primarily Gottman Method Couple Therapy, which has been researched for over 40 years and with thousands of couples (click here to learn about the research).  The primary goals of the therapy are to enhance the friendship, learn effective ways to manage conflict, and to help create shared meaning and dreams for your relationship.

Couples Therapy Frequently Asked Questions

Deciding to seek help from a professional can be an overwhelming experience!  But just because you have decided to seek help does not mean that you are a failure or that you are weak.  It takes a lot of courage to recognize a problem and to try to work on making it better!

Your relationship with me as your therapist is an integral part of the success of treatment and I encourage you to get to know me and ask questions to make sure it feels like a good fit.  It is important that you are able to trust my judgment and feel safe to discuss sensitive issues in the therapy room with me and with your partner.  Some questions to ask your therapist may include:

  • What is your philosophy on what makes a relationship work?
  • How do you practice therapy?
  • Under what circumstances would we discontinue therapy?

I am dedicated to providing an individual and collaborative approach to every person who seeks treatment with me based on your identified needs.  Many people report feeling less distressed after the first few sessions, but that is not always the case for every couple.  I will work with you on developing a plan that makes sense to you and we will continue to evaluate progress throughout your treatment to determine when therapy is no longer needed.  Generally, many couples attend therapy for 6-15 sessions, but this is not the case for every couple.

Couples therapy is not a provided benefit under most insurance plans, because insurance plans require medical necessity for treatment. This means that to use health benefits for treatment, you need a diagnosable mental health disorder and your therapist needs to prove that your disorder is causing significant impairment in your life on a day-to-day basis.  While you may have specific mental health challenges, the focus of treatment in couple’s therapy is the treatment of your relationship dynamic rather than your mental health condition.

Insurance companies do not see relationship challenges as medically necessary.  You would not expect your insurance to cover cosmetic enhancements, and couple’s therapy is seen by the insurance company in a similar light.  It may improve your quality of life, but it is not considered medically necessary.

If you call your insurance company and ask if they cover couple’s therapy, they may say yes, but it does not guarantee coverage of services. What the insurance company is referencing in saying “yes” to couple’s counseling is that they cover a procedure code that allows a family member to be present in therapy.  As stated above, the focus of counseling is on the treatment of a diagnosable mental health condition.  They consider your partner as a support in the treatment of your mental health condition, rather than a person also receiving treatment for relationship challenges.

If you wish to call your insurance company to inquire about couple’s therapy coverage, you need to be specific and ask about covering the diagnostic code Z63.0 Relationship distress with Spouse or Intimate partner for procedure code 90847.

My standard rate for therapy sessions are $125 per 60 minute session.  Please do not hesitate to contact me about questions or concerns regarding fees and insurance.