Couple therapy is a form of psychological therapy used to help relationship distress. These include problems in intimate relating and sexual problems, difficulties in communication, incompatibility, and a broad spectrum of problems related to domestic violence, alcoholism, depression, and other forms of emotional dysfunction.
Couple therapy is sometimes mistakenly thought to be a method in which the therapist simply instructs or counsels the couple toward having a better relationship or communication skills. However, in most cases simply advising a couple does not help in any significant or lasting way.
Instead psychodynamically-oriented couple therapy is a method of treatment that offers a neutral and impartial treatment environment in which both partners’ contributions are addressed. It is built on the premise that neither partner is right or wrong, but that both play a role in perpetuating the relationship difficulties.
At times couples become stuck while both feel that if the other would simply change everything would be better. In the process of treatment, roles and behaviors are identified and linked to the underlying needs and hopes of each partner. In this way both partners are able to recognize their respective roles in perpetuating their relationship difficulties while changing the relationship structure, reducing destructive relating, and restoring intimacy.