Joseph Gottfried,
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    My Approach   
    Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy is considered by
      experts to be The Most Effective Couples Counseling
                                       Available Today

    My approach, grounded in Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy (EFT),
    takes you through a three stage process that gets you out of the hard
    times and puts trust and love back into your relationship, in as few as 20

    With consistently impressive results, 25 years of research on EFT
    has found that:

  • 70-75% of couples recover completely - with the gains
        lasting long after counseling has ended.

  • 90% improve significantly.

  • Success does not depend on how distressed you are before therapy.

  • 86% of couples report being happier after EFT.  

    EFT guides you below the stormy emotional surface of your conflicts into
    the feelings that help you really "get" each other.  This allows love to
    flow and bonds to strengthen.

          My Approach to Couples and Marriage Counseling
    Gets to the Bottom of What Couples Really Argue About

    Although you may be having seemingly unresolvable differences about
    money, sex, kids, chores, or clothes left carelessly on the floor, these
    are just surface problems.

    Even with very painful problems like infidelity, addiction, isolation, and
    aggression, there is a root cause that is often hard to see.

    So what is this root cause?

    Below the surface of our conflicts, we want to feel accepted and
    loved for ourselves.  Without this, a relationship will sooner or
    later die.

    Thus, the heart of the therapy I do is in gently guiding you to be more
    honest and real in your relationship.  Your relationship becomes a safe
    place to risk showing up more as you are, even with all your warts
    and difficult feelings.

    As you both feel more accepted and loved, your difficulties are
    way easier to talk about.

             The Three Stages of Couples Counseling

    STAGE ONE  - You Find Calm and Understanding

    In the first stage of couples and marriage counseling, you learn to
    calm your relationship dramas.   This is done in two ways:
    1) by seeing and understanding what's going on yourself and in
    your partner, and 2) by seeing and changing the negative patterns
    of your relationship.

    1)    If you are having a conflict within a negative relationship pattern,
    you probably feel that your partner is causing you pain, and you want
    to them to stop!  This is normal.

    But as I help you slow things down to understand more of what's
    going on with each of you, it changes the way you see yourself
    and your partner.  You see that there are often good reasons you
    each do what you do.  In your own unique way, you each feel hurt by
    not feeling accepted and loved.

     As you begin to understand the stories and feelings beneath your
     negative dramas,
you become more compassionate and
     accepting of one another.

    2)    Also in this first stage of couples counseling, you learn to see
    the bigger picture of your painful interactions.  You see that
    there is an emotional chain reaction driven round and round by
    your hurt, anger, and distance.

    You learn to change these negative patterns that spiral down
    into the relationship toilet into more positive patterns that spiral
    up towards happiness and love.

    You get out of the destructive blame game and learn new ways to talk
    things out.  You shift into really enjoying each other.

    But we're not done yet - there's more.

    Many couples therapists would stop here, and then down the road 6
    months or more, your same old dramas and conflicts would likely
    resurface.  That's because you did not go deep enough into the
    feelings and needs that create the foundation of a strong bond.

    STAGE TWO  - You Create A Loving Bond Together

    In stage two, I guide you into learning a whole new level of interaction
    that creates a loving bond between you.  Now that you feel safer in your
    relationship, you learn to share with each other more deeply what you
    feel and want.  

    You are able to listen and "tune in" to each other.  As you show up
    with each other in the moment, you discover that you can count on
    your partner to be there.

    You are relieved to find that it's actually OK to be you, in fact,
    it's what your partner has been wanting all along!

    As you experience your truer selves with one another, a deeper bond is
    formed.  You see into each other's hearts.  Through your love for
    one another, old hurts and even painful betrayals are healed.

    This new trust and love does not go away after couples therapy.  
    There is a solid loving bond that helps keep your relationship

    STAGE THREE   - You Discover New Solutions To Old Problems

    In the final stage, you learn to talk through your differences.  
    Since you are no longer fighting over you deeper needs and feelings
    of wanting to be loved, communication is way easier.   I guide
    you as needed, as even old stubborn problems are resolved.

    Feeling loved and safe in your marriage or relationship, you can
    relax, take care of business, and have more fun without all the
    fuss and fight.  Whew!

    This is not to say that you live happily ever after, but more that you
    now know how to return to happiness even when the going gets tough.  
    When something comes up between you, you naturally work together
    to unblock whatever is stopping your closeness and love.

    In stage three, you learn to really care about each other's happiness.
    Now that you have a partner who's for you and with you, life's
    challenges are a lot easier to face.

    You are happy to be together.

    If you want to turn your conflicts into love, give me a
    call or email to set up an appointment.   I also offer a
    free 10 minute phone consultation to find if we are a
    good fit in working together.


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Couples Counseling Chicago
Help for Couples in Conflict

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3850 N Lawndale Ave.
Chicago, IL 60618

600 Dakota Street
Suite B
Crystal Lake, IL 60012

1580 N Northwest Hwy
Suite 311D
Park Ridge, IL 60068