Marriage and Couples Counseling in Seattle, WA

Our lives can be stressful - work, children, family, and finances often take priority, leaving one’s relationship or marriage feeling strained. If you and your partner are struggling, couples therapy in Seattle may be something worth exploring. Here you will work to resolve conflict, improve communication, build trust, and escape the negative cycle you’re stuck in.

Why Seek Couples Therapy?

There are many reasons why couples seek out couples therapy. Some couples are dealing with specific issues, such as infidelity, finances, and parenting struggles. Other times couples find themselves constantly fighting or bickering over the same problems, feeling stuck in a never-ending cycle of negativity. Some partners simply want to strengthen communication, intimacy, and trust in a safe, supportive environment.

If you and your partner are struggling with any of the following, you may benefit from couples therapy:

  • You keep getting in the same fights over and over again.
  • You’re exhausted from the fighting and withdrawal you seem to keep getting in.
  • You feel stuck, and you’re not sure how to make things work again.
  • Your trust has been broken.
  • You worry that what you once had is gone forever.
  • Your past trauma is affecting your current relationship.
  • You feel your emotional and/or physical connection is lacking.
  • You struggle to communicate your wants and needs.

I can help you and your partner…

  • De-escalate and resolve conflict.
  • Uncover how past trauma and childhood affect your current relationship.
  • Address and express underlying, unmet needs for a closer connection.
  • Develop a more intimate, supportive relationship.
  • Break out of negative dynamics or toxic cycles.
  • Find hope and healing.

Meet Lia

I’m Lia (she/her), a Seattle therapist specializing in the practices of Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT), Accelerated Experiential Dynamic Psychotherapy (AEDP), and Internal Family Systems (IFS). Through the application of these modalities, I help couples identify and disengage from negative patterns and cycles, examine their vulnerabilities and traumas, and find healing. 

I strive to create an inclusive and welcoming environment for couples, regardless of race, gender, sexuality, ability, or marital status. No matter your background or past, I am glad that you are here, and I am committed to supporting you and your partner during this process.

What to Expect

My Unique Approach to Couples Therapy

Unlike most therapists, I offer a program for couples. The program is to meet for about 90-minutes every other week and to complete a family of origin/attachment history session with me within the first couple months of meeting. Because of the depth and emotional intensity of couples work, I have found that longer sessions are required to explore and truly understand the conflict. I have also found that working this way ultimately saves time and money in the long run compared to weekly 50-minute sessions. 
And yet, not everyone is ready to dive into longer sessions. So, I have created a “choose your own adventure” option, where you have some flexibility to set the length and pace of sessions.
This is an investment in you and your relationship. One that can save you thousands of dollars compared to the cost of divorce. Collaborative divorce or mediation can cost anywhere from $30-50K. A contested divorce can cost upwards of $100K.
If you’d like to learn more about whether this is the right fit, please reach out for a consult. This is a program I’ve cultivated over years of being a private practice couples clinician, and I and my clients have had a lot of success with it.

Key Benefits of This Couples Therapy Approach

Clients that have had the most success with this approach are folks that are ready to do deep transformational work on themselves and their relationship. However, if you’ve never been in therapy before it is very normal to experience resistance or fear around starting. For this reason having the ability to have a one hour session may be more attractive. Once you are comfortable with the process and with me, most of my couples long for the 90-min or 2-hr sessions. 
Family of Origin session- within the first couple months of meeting I recommend each couple do one attachment history/family of origin session with me to bring context and a deeper understanding into how prior relationships may be impacting your current relationship. This is optional, but strongly recommended. 
I’ve created this program based on what I’ve seen be very successful, but I’m aware it’s not where everyone starts out. It is really important to me that our therapy works with your body, hearts, schedules, and finances. Please reach out if you’d like to discuss!  

Couples Therapy Modalities

I am proud to offer my clients a unique combination of evidence-based therapies, including Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT), Accelerated Experiential Dynamic Psychotherapy (AEDP), and Internal Family Systems (IFS).

What is EFT?

Emotion Focused Therapy (EFT) involves identifying the negative cycles you keep getting caught in and using this knowledge to overcome this pattern, creating lasting change in your relationship and in your life. EFT helps us better understand our needs, fears, and deepest longings. It is a highly researched and successful modality geared towards finding or restoring the attachment bonds that we have formed with our partner, thus finding the secure connection we long for in our relationships. Research shows that 70-75% of couples recover from their distress, and 85-90% show significant improvements.

What is AEDP?

Accelerated Experiential Dynamic Psychotherapy (AEDP) recognizes that within each individual, there is an innate growth-oriented and healing capacity. Awakening to this capacity moves us from feeling stuck to experiencing a new vitality that can heal and transform us. Incorporating AEDP into couples therapy means that I balance the focus on what is “wrong” with seeing the subtle signs of love and appreciation for the other that may be occurring in that moment. The felt experience of love is evoked in each partner. The intention is to grow in awareness, attunement, and appreciation for the other. 

AEDP seeks to create change through the undoing of aloneness and has roots in interpersonal neurobiology, attachment theory, mother-infant intersubjectivity research, emotion theory, and body-focused approaches. The goal is to foster new and healing experiences and, with these experiences, gain resources, resilience, and a renewed zest for life and each other.

What is IFS?

Internal Family Systems (IFS) views the mind as being made up of many different minds or sub-personalities, called “parts”. Many of my clients will learn to better understand their emotions and the parts that makeup themselves; the inner critic, the inadequate part, the people pleaser, the perfectionist, and the inner child. When we gain an understanding of our parts, we can begin to recognize “who” is showing up at any particular moment and making our life’s decisions or contributing to tricky relational dynamics.

Is Couples Therapy With Lia Right For You?

Couples therapy with me is right for you if:

Couples therapy with me would not be right for you if:

Start Couples Therapy

Schedule your free 20-30 minute consultation with Lia today!