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(Audio MP3 & Transcript)

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Beyond I Messages: Safe and Sane Couples Communication
(Audio MP3 & Transcript)

Beyond I Messages: Safe and Sane Couples Communication
(Audio MP3 & Transcript)


How many times have you and your partner struggled to discuss a problem without pointing fingers or getting agitated? And even if your partner says they are not blaming – do you feel blamed anyway?


How many times have you and your partner struggled to discuss a problem without pointing fingers or getting agitated? And even if your partner says they are not blaming – do you feel blamed anyway?

Perhaps you have tried the classic “I Messages” but found that this old approach unwittingly created heated discussions. “I Messages” sometimes make you feel responsible for your partner’s reactions. And this guarantees the start of a very bad discussion. Before you know it, you are digging yourself out of a hole you didn’t even mean to create.

There is a way out.

Listen to Ellyn and Peter's one-hour session to learn an innovative approach to discussing challenging topics.

Conversations that are conflictual occur because each person defaults into a self protective mode.
All ineffective communication stems from the natural desire to get relief from the pain or threat each person feels. When you are calmer, when you can avoid pain or feeling threatened, topics can be discussed more easily.

Using a unique structure to guide you through your toughest topics, you can start discussing difficulties without triggering defensive reflexes in each other.

You’ll learn individual steps for initiating difficult discussions.

You will also hear a live demonstration of a couple practicing this process.

And we’re teaching things that can help you even if your partner chooses not to listen!

The downloadable audio costs just $40.00. As a bonus, you will also get a transcript of the session so you can conveniently skim and review the material after you listen to it.

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A Glossary of Terms that are sometimes Confusing

Couples Therapy is a counseling procedure that seeks to improve the adjustment of two people who have created an interdependent relationship. There are no standard procedures to help two people improve their adjustments to each other. Generally, a more experienced therapist will offer more perspectives and tools to a couple. Length of treatment will depend on severity of problems, motivation and skills of the therapist. A couple can be dating, living together, married or separating and may be gay, lesbian or heterosexual.

Marriage Therapy is a term often used interchangeably with marriage counseling. The term marriage implies two people have created a union sanctioned by a government or religious institution. The methods used in marriage counseling, marriage therapy and couples therapy are interchangeable and depend more on the specific challenges of each unique couple.

Psychotherapy is one or more processes to help improve psychological and emotional functioning. Examples are psychoanalysis, cognitive therapy, behavior therapy, Gestalt therapy, Transactional Analysis, Rational-Emotive therapy, or group therapy. Many forms of psychotherapy are blends of different approaches. For example, newer forms of psychotherapy called energy psychology draw upon recent advances in brain and neuroscience. These approaches often build on cognitive behavioral methods.

Clinical Psychologist. After graduating from college, it usually takes about five years of graduate school to get a Ph.D. in Psycholgy. It then requires an additional two years of supervision and passing a written (and often) an oral exam. There are a few states that allow psychologists to prescribe medications (with additional training) but that is uncommon.

Psychiatrist. After graduation from medical school, there is a generally a 4-year psychiatric residency. After the completion of this training, psychiatrists must pass an exam issued by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology to obtain certification and legally practice in the field. Psychiatrists can prescribe medications.

Clinical Social Worker. This profession usually requires two years of study after obtaining an undergraduate degree. While specific licensure requirements vary by state, most require clinical social workers to obtain 3,000 hours or 2 years of supervised clinical experience, after obtaining a Masters degree. Social workers can also specialize in diverse fields such as human services management, social welfare analysis, community organizing, social and community development, and social and political research.

Marriage and Family Therapist. Obtaining this license requires a Masters degree which takes approximately two years of post graduate study. The license also requires 3000 hours of supervised work and passing written exams.

The Couples Institute. We have assembled a group of top notch therapists at The Couples Institute. Whatever marriage help or marriage advice you are looking for, we are here to serve you. While most other therapists see only a few couples a week, we specialize in marriage and couples relationships, working to develop and bring you the most current and effective approaches to couples therapy. For more information about couples therapy or marriage counseling, see our couples therapy section.