Serving San Francisco, Marin, and the East Bay.
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Therapists, in collaboration with the individual or couple, help to understand what is at the root of relationship difficulties. Therapy can spotlight the real issues and help you cope with the associated emotional cycles.
Sooner or later, most romantic relationships become challenging. Partners begin relationships with many hopes, seeing the best in each other. It is common for couples to experience a “honeymoon” period where partners overlook each other’s flaws. As both individuals come to know each other more fully, disappointments naturally arise. Then communication can break down and conflicts can surface over everyday issues such as money, parenting, or intimacy.
Partners may find themselves stuck in repeating arguments, locked into stony silences, or left feeling isolated or criticized. Although it may feel hopeless, these problems are not uncommon. Often a crisis in relationships is filled with potential to know and be known by your partner in a new and deeper way.
Research has shown that what is most important in healthy relationships is the belief that your partner cares about how you feel. When partners come to believe that they can depend on the other to understand and care about them, the relationship is transformed. Differences become an opportunity to learn about each other and grow together. The potential to experience a new kind of joy in being together becomes possible.
Relationships with family and friends can also be challenging. Therapy can help you develop new skills, like self-assertion or setting limits. It is the job of the therapist, in collaboration with you as an individual or couple, to understand what is at the root of your difficulties. Therapy can illuminate the real issues and help you get a handle on the painful emotional cycles that have caused distress in your relationships. Gradually you can move towards more fulfilling and mutually satisfying connections with others.