Video: 7 Principles that Make Marriage Work

Marriage & Couples Counseling Services

Couple in marriage counseling. Female is talking

Couples & Marriage Counseling

All relationships have conflict, but sometimes it may leave you feeling frustrated and misunderstood. We use the empirically validated Gottman Method to fine-tune your relationship to help you feel understood and manage conflicts so that your connection is deepened.

A happy and surprised woman is snuggled against her boyfriend who is holding an engagement ring

Pre-marital Counseling

We offer premarital counseling to couples who want to prepare for a lifetime of love and joy. Our approach focuses on effective communication, understanding how each of you deal with stress and conflict, and providing practical tips on managing that conflict effectively.

A couple in their new home after moving in together for the first time

Dating Counseling & Coaching

Dealing with anxiety, uncertainty, or even confusion from managing multiple matches (or too few) can add to the stress of dating in a city like Austin. No matter where you are on your dating journey, we’re here to offer the support and guidance you need to navigate the world of dating.

Common topics addressed in couples counseling

A man in a blue shirt is shown stacking coins in equal piles. Budgeting is the number one reason for conflict in couples.

Marriage Counseling and Finances

Money and budgeting are the number one cause of disagreements among couples, as it can represent power, control, and security. By teaching effective communication skills and providing logical budgeting exercises, we can help you address this significant source of conflict in your relationship. Our goal is to help you tackle financial stress together, as a team.

A smiling man and woman laying on the ground with a baby crawling between them.

Marriage Counseling and Parenting

Parenting can be a challenging and rewarding journey, but it can also be a source of conflict and stress for couples. As the second leading cause of conflict in relationships, it’s important to address and manage differences in parenting styles effectively. We understand the emotional charge that can come with parenting and we’ll work with you to find effective solutions that meet the needs of your children and your family as a whole.

A fully-clothed couple snuggling in bed.

Couples Counseling and Intimacy

Intimacy is a crucial aspect of a happy and healthy relationship, and it goes beyond just physical intimacy. While sex can be an important part of intimacy, emotional warmth, and closeness are equally vital. In today’s world, where technology and social media dominate, it’s easy to get disconnected from our partners and feel like roommates. At Gate Healing, PLLC, we help couples explore their relationship and work towards regaining their connection and spark.

A couple in their new home after moving in together for the first time

Communication and Couples Counseling

A skilled marriage counselor facilitates communication between partners during couples sessions. By engaging in open and constructive dialogue with one another, rather than solely communicating through the therapist, you can develop the tools and techniques necessary to improve your relationship outside of therapy. The goal of effective marriage counseling is to empower you with the skills to maintain a strong and healthy relationship long after therapy has ended.

FAQs for Couples Counseling

What if my partner is hesitant to attend couples counseling?

It’s common for one partner to worry that a couples counselor will take sides or not understand their perspective. However, a skilled couples therapist will strive to understand both sides and help each partner feel heard and respected. As a Gottman Method-trained therapist, I follow a structured approach that can help couples improve communication and strengthen their relationship. Before you commit to counseling, I am happy to speak with each of you individually over the phone to answer any questions you may have.

What if our disagreements become heated during counseling sessions?

While couples counseling may bring up difficult issues, it is also a safe and structured environment to explore these dynamics in a more effective way. Conflict is not necessarily a sign of impending divorce; it’s the inability to address and resolve disagreements that can lead to a breakdown in a relationship. By seeking counseling, you are taking a positive step toward improving your relationship, avoiding divorce, and building a happier future together.

How long does it take for couples counseling to be effective?

With the Gottman Method Assessment, we can quickly identify areas of concern and work on strategies to improve communication and connection. Many couples report feeling a sense of relief and hope after just one or two sessions. Keep in mind that the goal of counseling isn’t necessarily to “fix” problems, but to strengthen your ability to communicate and build trust. This resilience can help you weather the inevitable challenges that arise in any relationship.

Does it matter where we were married?

No, the location of your wedding ceremony does not impact your ability to benefit from couples counseling. Marriage licenses are legal documents that certify your commitment to each other, and the process of counseling focuses on improving the connection and communication between partners. Regardless of where you were married, you can work with a counselor to strengthen your relationship and build a happier future together.

Couples Counseling Resources

Gottman Institute – Jonathan was trained by the Clinical Director of the Gottman Institute. Learn more about the Gottman Method here

Psychology Today – Articles about couples counseling on one of the most trusted resources on self-help

Jonathan F. Anderson, LPC-s has worked in the helping profession since he started college in 1990. After completing his Bachelor’s degree at the University of Texas, Austin in 1994, he attended the highly-regarded University of Minnesota to earn his Master’s degree in 1997. He is a Licensed Professional Counselor and is recognized as a Board Approved Supervisor by the State of Texas Board of Examiners of Professional Counselors. Jonathan has completed Level-2 of the Gottman Method of Couples Counseling, and in 1998 received training by the International Critical Incident Stress Foundation in Advanced Critical Incident Stress Management & Debriefing. To learn more about Jonathan’s practice, click here: Jonathan F. Anderson, LPC-s.

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