Couples Therapy & Marriage Counseling

Couples/Relationship Counseling

I have completed the Level 3 Practicum Training in Gottman Method Couples Therapy and I use Gottman Method Couples Therapy in my work. Gottman Method Couples Therapy is based on the work of Drs. John and Julie Gottman and is an evidence-based form of couples therapy based on 40 years of research.

I start my work with each couple by conducting a thorough assessment of each individual and the relationship as a whole. Part of a couple’s intake includes each couple completing the Gottman Relationship Checkup. The Gottman Relationship Checkup is aclinical tool consists of 480 questions about number of different areas of your relationship including: friendship, intimacy, how you manage emotions and conflict, values and goals, parenting, housework, finances and individual areas of concern.

After the initial assessment we will develop a treatment plan that includes readings and exercises outside of session to complete. Oftentimes couples benefit from frequent visits at the beginning of therapy and later moving to less frequent visits and eventually ending our work.

Here are the Couples/Relationship concerns that I specialize in:

Conflict Management:

Many couples struggle with how to have productive conflict. Moreover, many people generally avoid conflict at all costs. This is counterproductive and leads to a well-known dynamic known as a pursuer-distancer pattern in relationship. What typically happens in this dynamic is that one person will hold off bringing up a concern until they are extremely frustrated. This results in the distancer going to further and further lengths to avoid the conflict discussion and the pursuer becomes increasingly critical and distressed.

Suggested Readings:

7 Principles of Making Marriage Work, by John Gottman and Nan Silver
Hold Me Tight, by Sue Johnson

Compromise:

The key to effective compromise is truly listening to the another person’s concerns before moving on to the details of compromise. Oftentimes, I will help couples identify their underlying dreams, values, and needs before rushing to compromise too quickly.

Suggested Readings:

7 Principles of Making Marriage Work, by John Gottman and Nan Silver

Infidelity/Betrayal:

Trust concerns are devastating in a relationship. The person (or persons) who were hurt oftentimes have lingering trauma symptoms including intrusive thoughts, intense anger, and hypervigilance. The betraying partner(s) often avoid discussing the affair (or other betrayal). This results in the hurt partner feeling like “they don’t want to talk about but I can’t stop thinking about it”. I help my clients work though the stages of atonement and reestablishment of trust and moving towards building a new, stronger relationship.

Suggested Readings:

Not Just Friends, by Shirley Glass
State of Affairs, by Esther Perel

Sexual Concerns:

Many people are embarrassed or afraid to bring up sexual concerns, even with their healthcare providers. I believe that a person’s sexual expression is an integral part of their humanity. Couples that can talk openly about sex feel more “known” by the other person and often report more relationship and sexual satisfaction. I identify as a sex-positive therapist and am affirming for clients who identify as sexual, gender, and relationship minorities and I welcome those who identify as coming from the kink or poly communities.

Suggested Readings:

Come as You Are, by Emily Nagoski
Mating in Captivity, by Esther Perel



2006 E Broadway Suite 104
Pearland, Tx 77581

drchristopherscott@gmail.com
832-779-1586

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