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  • Joanna Meister

Is Couples Therapy Centre only for couples?

I am not in a couple, can I come for therapy at Couples Therapy Centre?


Absolutely!


We don’t just see couples at Couples Therapy Centre, although it is an area of focus and an area that our therapists have received training in, however we are all relational therapists.


What does this mean?! It means that we are always considering the self and system regardless of the modality, couples or individuals, in Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT). With couples, the self and other are in the therapy room, however with individuals, the work with the other may be someone important in your life (a nurturer, an attachment figure) that we reach through guided imagery or using other techniques to connect. Alternatively, it may be the therapist standing in to support you in creating these experiences of emotional security and provide the safe space to be vulnerable.


How would you help me?


While we do have training in EFT and try to bring this theory of attachment to all the work we do, it’s not the only tool in our therapy toolbox! We work with individuals to find out their goals for therapy the same way we would work with a couple, we ask them! In couples therapy, the relationship is our client; in individual therapy, you are our client. Even if you are in a relationship, seeking individual therapy on your own as well as couples therapy through Couples Therapy Centre gives you the added benefit of knowing that while we are working with you as an individual, we keep in mind that you are part of a couple and one of our goals is to support the work you're doing in your couples sessions.


Once again, we aren’t just couples therapists, we are relational therapists who are mindful of how two or more people are connected. Even when you are our primary focus in individual therapy, we are considering you in the context of your life and in relation to the “others” in your life. At the very foundation of our work with clients is the person-centred humanistic approach of Carl Rogers. A person-centred approach supports the client in their development of a positive view of self, awareness, integration and regulation of their feelings and emotions and also the development of an internal compass that enhances the valuing of their own opinions and feelings. The goal is to guide the client on their journey of self-actualization, through increased autonomy and personal empowerment. The three fundamental elements of Rogerian therapy are congruence, unconditional positive regard, and empathy (Gallagher, 2017). Connecting this humanistic person-centred approach to the attachment lens of emotionally focused therapy, Johnson (2019) demonstrates Rogers and Bowlby's central belief that a skilled therapist fundamentally tunes into and then supports each client's natural capacity for growth.


Emotionally Focused Individual Therapy (EFIT)'s goal is to help clients progress into the openness, responsiveness, and full participation that characterize safe connection with others (Johnson, 2019).



Gallagher, J. (2017). Humanistic Approaches in Counselling and Therapy.


Johnson, S. M. (2019). Attachment theory in practice: Emotionally focused therapy (EFT) with

individuals, couples, and families. Guilford Publications.