Couples therapy in Denver
You lie in bed, staring at the ceiling wondering how you became two strangers in the same house. Life got in the way and you started living your life on parallel tracks.
You long to be close again ... A hug, a look, an acknowledgement, any small gesture to make you stop feeling like you're a ghost in this relationship, to have hope!
You talk to your friends, read the advice from experts but you end up feeling even more lost and confused.
You even had many talks with your partner, but somehow you can't get through, as if you are both speaking a different language.
Nothing seems to make a difference. You're not sure how long you can go on like this, just hoping for a change.
You're at a crossroad. You can let the gap between you grow, or you can take action, learn tools specific to your personal situation, start rebuilding the intimacy and closeness in your relationship, and feel confident about your future together.
I'm Valerie Abitbol, a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in Denver, CO.
I help couples who feel like room mates or enemies reconnect, rebuild trust; and I support them in making their dreams of a long and happy future together a reality.
Stress in relationships
You long for closeness but instead fight, blame, withdraw, and defend, leaving you feeling even more lonely and disconnected from one another.
Maybe you have a harder time being open with each other, unsure if you can trust your partner with sharing your most personal thoughts and feelings.
Not knowing how to stop or do something different, couples get stuck, which kills the spark, love, and passion that initially drew them to each other.
We learn “how relationships work” from our families and society at large. These examples often lead us to use patterns and communication styles that actually don't fit with the kind of relationship we want.
Couples experience many stresses such as:
- caregiver exhaustion
- the process of getting married
- having a child
- extended-family issues
Healthy relationships require real effort from both partners. As a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT), I bring a warm, engaged, and directive approach to couples therapy and marriage counselling.
Whether you're looking for marriage counseling or couples therapy, I can guide you and your partner through the process.
Some issues I help couples move through in couples counseling include:
- emotional detachment
- chronic fighting
- family of origin issues
- challenges of staying intimately connected while parenting
Having been raised in Europe, I am particularly sensitive to cross-cultural issues.
I enjoy working with married and non-married couples, from various ages, ethnicities, genders, and sexual orientations.
When to seek relationship counseling?
Couples therapy and marriage counselling are beneficial at any stage of the relationship, however, the sooner, the better if your goal is to improve your relationship or build a strong foundation.
Some couples start couples counseling at the beginning of a relationship or before getting married (pre-marital counseling) to get support build a solid foundation for their relationship.
Other couples come to see me also at the end of their relationships or marriage, and wish to part peacefully, or need help to navigate the emotional roller-coaster of a separation, especially when children are involved.
Relationships take work
We understand that relationships take work, but we rarely learn how to maintain and grow them. Relationships need nurturing and attention on a regular basis.
The path to a healthy connection with your partner is not easy to find, stay with, or find your way back to after losing it. My work as a couples therapist is to make it as doable as possible for you. It takes courage to be intimate and real in relationships, and it takes hard work to rebuild trust if you lost it.
While exploring and working on the challenging issues of your relationship, I will also help you remember and highlight what works in the relationship–what you love and appreciate about each other. You’ll learn ways to strengthen these positive aspects in your daily lives.
Denver Relationship counseling - PACT, Emotionally Focused Therapy & The Gottman method
My therapeutic approach with couples is informed mainly by the Psychobiological Approach to Couples Therapy (PACT) and Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) which incorporate the latest research in neuroscience and attachment theory, and the Gottman Method. All of the above are rigorously researched modalities for couples therapy.