Peter Pearson

Oprah 225Recently we were fortunate to be published in The Oprah Magazine. It’s a publication that always puts things in a practical perspective. We were asked to offer a few insights into the frustrating and perplexing arena of fighting couples. You’ll find us in the November issue of The Oprah Magazine, on page 121.

The year 2014 marks 30 years of using our Developmental Model of Couples Therapy to view normal struggles and help couples succeed in overcoming relationship challenges. We created this effective lens to view relationships as they naturally happen, as partners struggle between the ‘me’ and the ‘we.’

In other words we all go through the following stages of a relationship:  1) Bonding, 2) Differentiation, 3) Exploration, 4) Re-connection, and 5) Synergy. We may not necessarily go through them in order or at the same time as our partner. We can though learn tools and techniques to help us successively progress through them and not get stuck.

Our brief comments in the magazine contain some unique insights in viewing your relationship. We also have several articles below that go a little deeper into the meaning of this model and the positive influence it can have on your relationship.

The stages of the developmental model and what they mean for a partner.

The stages of the developmental model with actual examples from struggling couples.

Deeper insights and recommendations on how to handle conflict and sustain the intimacy in your marriage.

Hopefully these articles have given you some tools – and relief – around what may be transpiring in your relationship right now.

And, on the right hand side of the page you can also sign up to receive more great insights from our blog.

You’re not alone in your struggles. We’ve helped hundreds of couples in the San Francisco Bay Area and around the world to become more loving partners, and we’d like to help you.

Pete and Ellyn


Peter Pearson, Ph.D., Relationship & Teamwork Expert for Entrepreneur Couples

Pete has been training and coaching couples to become a strong team since 1984 when he co-founded The Couples Institute with his psychologist wife, Ellyn Bader.

Their popular book, “Tell Me No Lies,” is about being honest with compassion and growing stronger as a couple.

Pete has been featured on over 50 radio and television programs including “The Today Show,” "Good Morning America,” and "CBS Early Morning News,” and quoted in major publications including “The New York Times,” “Oprah Magazine,” “Redbook,” “Cosmopolitan,” and “Business Insider.”

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