Frequently Asked Questions
Whether you just heard, “I love you, but I’m not in love with you,” are trying to rebuild trust after an affair, need to replace distance with closeness, need to forgive (or be forgiven), or are trying to avoid separation or stop a divorce — Dr. Shane employs Gottman Institute’s research based methods to help couples develop the skills needed to hear (and be heard), resolve conflicts in a “win/win’ vs a “win/lose” fashion, and become fluent in and speak each other’s “love language” …so that you can try and make peace with the past and get past the pain.
Since 2003, Dr. Shane has rolled up his sleeves and got in the trenches with over 3,000 plus couples. Together they’ve been able to get to the root of the problem, and not be completely distracted by the symptoms. He will help you both identify your respective roles in your conflicts, what emotional challenges are stopping you two from hearing each other, and explore precisely what relationship dynamics contribute to you two creating win/lose, lose/win and lose/lose outcomes over and over again. His goal is to empower you two to develop the skills needed to create Win/Win outcomes that will help you two to live your happily ever after.
This is a very individual choice. Studies have found most couples come into therapy seven years after they should have. Therefore, marital problems can be uniquely challenging and intense compared to individual therapy, and can require a unique skill set. This problem is potentially made worse by the reality that most couples get one bite at the apple because spouses typically recall going to therapy and not necessarily the expertise of the therapist. That said, martial therapy is more of a marathon than a sprint, and if you cannot afford to work with a marital specialist, you’re best served by asking the providers registered with your insurance panel how many couples they have worked with and how many they typically see—the more the better.
Keep in mind, Studies have found while there are no guarantees, divorce rates drop as much as 30% with an intervention. So get in where you fit in, but definitely get help.
It’s your choice. You decide what we will or will not discuss. At the same time, you will both be asked to hear each other out, and if there a trust issues involved you will likely be asked to at least acknowledge that your answer isn’t working for your spouse, and they may need more information if you truly want them to “move on,” and re-establish trust.
Ethically we must at least address the elephant in the room, should there be one.
No. While we don’t take insurance, clients are provided an invoice that you can submit to your insurance provider for reimbursement, via “out-of-network” coverage. We recommend you contact your provider before making an appointment.
Although there is no contract outlining a specific amount of sessions, on average couples attend 8 sessions. There are no quick fixes, and rarely do couples attend one session. However, once couples find they are reconnecting, communicating more effectively, re-igniting the flame and the marriage they said “I do” to starts to re-emerge, many couples elect to continue therapy. One of Dr. Shane’s greatest pleasures is graduating clients from the “active” phase of therapy to the maintenance phase.
Dr. Shane’s ultimate job is to fire himself as once you develop the needed relationship and conflict resolution skills you no longer need him.
What happens in the first session?
We will start the process of you two hearing each other. Yes, Dr. Shane recognizes that may sound too simple to be effective. But he’s learned most times both spouses are truly trying to do the right thing to make their marriage and family stronger. However, while we tend to hire the same, we marry the opposite. As such, when you get married you get a second set of eyes, and to have a successful marriage you’ve got to learn to trust what they see—based on their perspective, temperament and personality, and personal history. Therefore, you and your spouse likely see the problem and solution differently.
Dr. Shane will help you both hear how much of the lingering resentment from unresolved conflicts stem from misunderstandings and miscommunications about each other’s approach to solving the problem. In this session, you will start to hear and acknowledge your spouses’ attempt to fix things – and they will attempt to do the same!
The ultimate goal of this initial session is to build rapport and trust, and start to get to the root of the problem(s) by taking a more holistic history of your relationship. We identify and leverage your strengths to minimize your limitations, and start the process of fixing the problem(s), and not just bandaging a symptom(s).
Additionally, Dr. Shane will find out what you hope to accomplish with your session(s) and put together a game plan.