Cary Counseling Center
A Tradition of Quality Service
Cary Counseling has provided expert counseling and therapy for the Triangle area since 1984. Our counselors and psychotherapists provide marriage counseling, individual psychotherapy, anger management, child play therapy, family counseling, substance abuse counseling, and personal growth coaching. Areas served include Raleigh, Cary, Apex, Morrisville, Holly Springs & Fuquay-Varina, NC
Learn more about Cary Counseling Center:
- Meet our staff of experts
- On-line recommendations for common problems
- On-line Marriage First Aid Kit
- A broad range of services
- Client satisfaction
As Seen on WRAL-TV in Raleigh:
Learn how our brain states make us dumb when we fight:
"Strategic marriage counseling" is active and direct, not the passive listening performed by some other marriage counselors.
I work with couples to form a logical plan to help to their achieve goals. Some marriage counselors offer listening and support but I think you deserve more from couples therapy. My active marriage counseling style teaches different strategies to gradually change your emotionally driven behaviors over time. Through this type of couples therapy you can become the person or couple you want to be.
Many marriage counselors employ a communication model for marriage counseling that assumes most couples' problems derive from dysfunctional communication. The assumption seems to be that teaching better communication should resolve their difficulties. Unfortunately, most well-designed studies show only about one-third of couples going through marriage counseling report significant post-treatment benefits. After two years, those number shrink by another 50 percent. Those are not impressive statistics and don't offer a strong argument for the simplistic communication marriage counseling model.
A couple's communication usually breaks down because of more complex emotional dynamics. You can probably remember when you and your partner could communicate just fine at the beginning of your relationship. What happens is that emotional dynamics accumulate and can gradually break down good communication in a long term relationship.
Those dynamics may involve historical shame issues, personality deficits, knowledge deficits, and boundary interactions. These issues can be quite complex but are still understandable through exploration in marriage counseling.
At Cary Counseling Center, teaching effective communication is only one small piece of a more comprehensive strategy. Our marriage counselors emphasize effective emotional regulation. This may involve learning how to influence one's own emotional state before projecting rage or behaving in a way that is toxic to the relationship. Old shame issues are clarified so that they do not unconsciously disrupt the marriage. Principles of "tact" are taught so that both partners experience less threat to their psychological boundaries while negotiating their needs. Couples are also taught about how "ego states" are often critical to getting their needs met and how to anticipate and schedule getting together so that both parties are receptive to each other.
Sometimes, other forms of therapy will be a necessary first step in marriage counseling work. Group therapy or individual therapy is sometimes necessary to help change a person's internal emotional responses before the couple's external interactions can constructively become the main focus.
While teaching is often employed in good marriage counseling, an emphasis is also placed on homework between sessions. The marriage counselor often assigns homework in the form of communication or behavioral exercises. A couple may be assigned homework to re-enact a recent argument but to do it in a newly agreed upon way. An individual may also be asked to practice self-talk or guided imagery to deal with irrational beliefs or old feelings of shame that are intruding into the relationship. There are many other forms of homework that are too numerous to list here. The main point is that Cary Counseling marriage counselors place an emphasis on practice and implementation in addition to insight. Our marriage counselors do much more than just teach good communication.
So that you can better understand our approach, I have placed an incredible amount of useful information on this website. If you seek marriage counseling, please read my first four book chapters as well as the different syndromes discussed in The Marriage First Aid Kit. I believe it's always good to have more information, even if you don't come for marriage counseling.
Read more about marriage counseling for Raleigh, Cary and Morrisville.
Learn about our Love Odyssey Couples Retreats.