Couples and Marital Therapy
While it is not clear if there is actually any research to prove Tolstoy correct, it certainly seems true that every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way. And, relatedly, every unhappy relationship seems unhappy in its own way.
Couples Therapy Must Deal with Your Unique Problems
Indeed, because every relationship is unique, every couples therapy should be unique. A one-size-fits-all theoretical approach may not work in every situation because every relationship is different. Therefore, it is important to work with a therapist whose expertise covers a large range of areas pertaining to relationship happiness.
These include, but are not limited to the following:
- Communication issues
- Sexual issues
- Issues pertaining to physical affection
- Parenting issues
- Issues regarding cleanliness and clutter
- Differences about how to deal with leisure time
- Conflicts about dealing with friends, relatives and in-laws
- Stepfamily and blended family issues
Couples Therapy Needs to be Sensitive to Each of You as Individuals
As each relationship is composed of two individuals, it is also important that your couples therapist be well-versed in the psychological factors and treatment strategies that are associated with the problems that come up for individuals, such as anxiety, depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and so forth.
Dr. Henig's Unique Experience and Expertise Related to Couples Therapy
As a result of being a therapist for over thirty years, Dr. Henig has seen the gamut of couples problems, as well as individual problems. More importantly, she has many areas of expertise that uniquely qualify her to work with couples.
Most relationships, at some point along the way, have an element of romance. Dr. Henig has been interested in romantic relationships and how they function throughout the course of her career. She conducted research while earning her doctoral degree on various aspects of romantic love, and she presented this research to staff at St. Elizabeth's Hospital in Washington, D.C. as long ago as 1976. More recently, in 2007, she wrote Single on Long Island: Meeting Other Singles and Finding the One, a book that helps single people find romance.
It is important to work with a couples therapist who is sensitive to the issue of romantic love, and how this has either helped the relationship sustain itself, or how a lack of it may have played a role in the couple's problems.
Sex and physical affection
Most relationships begin with some sexual attraction. And, for many relationships, the sexual connection is a glue that helps fortify the relationship. Dr. Henig is uniquely qualified to help you with sexual relationship problems as she is certified in sex therapy by the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists and has experience dealing with sexual problems.
Over time, sexual problems can rob a couple of shared joy, and can even wreak havoc on an otherwise good relationship. Whether sexual issues contribute to the problems in a relationship or whether the sexual connection is a strength in the relationship, it is helpful when a couples therapist is knowledgeable about sexual functioning and dysfunction in individuals and relationships.
Raising children is a complicated endeavor. And when parents don't see eye to eye on how to deal with the children, it can make a complicated endeavor even more difficult.
Dr. Henig has a great deal of experience and expertise in working with parenting issues, and children's problems. She has a postdoctoral diploma in child and adolescent psychotherapy, and she has written several helpful self-help books for children and parents.
Disorganization and clutter
Problems with disorganization and clutter are far more common in our society than most people think, and issues in this area can often contribute to unhappiness in a relationship. Dr. Henig, who has a particular interest in this subject, has lectured to professional organizers on the psychological factors associated with disorganization and clutter.
Finally, the opposite of marriage is divorce. And while couples therapy is all about helping a couple improve their relationship so that they never have to think about divorce, the sad truth is that not all relationships are strong enough to be entirely divorce-proof. Therefore, it is helpful for a couples therapist to have at least some familiarity with the process of divorce. Such a therapist is able to clarify for a couple the questions, concerns and anxieties they may have about the options available to them should their relationship problems seem impossible to resolve.
Dr. Henig has formal training in several areas associated with divorce, including parent coordination and divorce mediation. And while these areas are not components of the work that Dr. Henig does when helping individuals in couples therapy, her knowledge about divorce can enhance her sensitivity to this painful issue.
Should a couple feel that they have reached a point in which they feel that they would benefit from consultations with divorce mediators, divorce financial analysts or attorneys, Dr. Henig is able to discuss possible referrals.
But, hopefully, this will not be the case.