Boynton Beach Couples Counseling

Nothing impacts us more than our closest relationships. Yet few develop the necessary knowledge and skills necessary to create great ones. The statistics associated with our lack of relationship success validates my assertion: Roughly 50% of first marriages end in divorce; approximately 60% of second ones fail, and over 70% of third marriages don’t last as well. It is a testament to our lack of understanding and guidance into how to make satisfying and sustainable relationships.

Couples Therapy Counseling

In my opinion, and experience working with hundreds of couples and families, it is typically not for lack of trying or care for one another but is the result of our emotional wounds and the defensive strategies we use to manage them that leads to an inability to develop and maintain secure emotional connections with one another.

Couples therapy is an environment where we can identify what the specific factors are that contribute to creating the conflict cycles that cause relationship distress. Moreover, we then can identify and create healing or corrective experiences that lead to new more effective patterns of behavior. This then allows each partner to generate the insight and skills necessary to manage mis-attunements and disconnection in more functional manner leading to an increased level of emotional and relational security.

Why Most Couple’s Therapy Fails

However, the majority of couples therapy is frequently ineffective. You attend the sessions hoping for guidance and assistance in breaking free from the recurrent conflict and emotional pain you are in. You receive relationship theories and information that makes sense and offers initial hope. But when you attempt to implement these recommendations back home, you repeatedly fail to find success or break free from your recurrent conflict patterns. Research on the effectiveness of couples therapy shows that most couples regress and erase their gains within the first several months following completion of therapy.

The reason being is nothing has changed biologically. The historical ways we have dealt with disconnection and lack of emotionally secure attachment are mapped into our body/emotional memory. Unless these networks are altered and changed, you will not be able to create new healthy patterns with any consistency. Furthermore, when the new behavior is needed the most is when you will least be able to access it due to it being overridden by the old pattern.

An Experience, Not Information

Therapy should be an experience not information. The reason this is so key is due to the fact that for real success to be achieved we have to create what is referred to as neuroplasticity –the brain’s ability to change itself with new experience. Neuroplasticity cannot be accomplished through insight or information. This is what happens all too frequently in most therapies; it is too left-brain focused when what is needed is a right brain experience.

My role as a couples therapist is not to make decisions for you, tell you who is right or wrong or whose subjective reality is more accurate. It is to identify the way in which you are getting highjacked by your past conditioning and create safe, contrasting experiences to help you heal emotionally and generate more functional updated relational patterns.

Scientifically-Validated Approaches

This can only be achieved through what are referred to as experiential therapies. The ones I have found most effective for working with couples and producing actual results are Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy, Internal Family Systems, and Accelerated Experiential Dynamic Psychotherapy. Each of these approaches provides powerful interventions to create neuroplasticity and true change. They are the most scientifically validated approaches to date.

Hawkins Counseling Center’s approach to couples therapy is based on research-proven models delivered in a safe, nonjudgmental, empathic manner. We strive to understand and validate each partner’s emotional experience in the relationship. I regularly say, “I am not simply impartial, I am an advocate for each of you.”

The Power of Neuroplasticity

We create a safe environment to that allows our clients to take structured and supported emotional risks allowing them to heal old wounds and create new possibilities in their relationships. Our focus is on creating in-session experiences, which creates neuroplasticity, which creates change.

Couples therapy should not consist of spending an hour attempting to clarify the different subjective facts of what occurred the previous week or requesting I tell your partner what they should do or even provide you with relevant information on relationships. Although the latter material has a place, the primary emphasis of the session should be on generating new, corrective experiences.

If you would like to break free from you current conflict cycles as a couple and begin creating a more rewarding, satisfying and emotionally secure relationship, go to for more information or to schedule an initial session.

Couples Therapy FAQs

How does couples counseling work?

The way our Boynton Beach couples counseling sessions work is:

  1. You both come in together for each session.
  2. During the first session, your counselor gets to know you both as a couple and your goals in terms of couples therapy.
  3. During every following session, we provide a safe space for you both to grow emotionally and make progress towards healing old wounds. We don’t treat these as a mediation session—you won’t be recapping the entire week to discover who was right or wrong. We focus on giving you in-session experiences to help you grow, as individuals and as a couple.
  4. Over time, the cadence and focus of each session is custom-tailored to your relationship. We use scientifically proven modalities like Internal Family Systems, Accelerated Experiential Dynamic Psychotherapy and Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy.
  5. Eventually, you may find that you only need an occasional appointment or emotional check-in instead of ongoing sessions. We’ll dial this in to suit your relationship and any new challenges that come up over time.

How do we know if couples counseling is the right choice for us?

Here are some crystal-clear signs that couples counseling could be the right choice for you:

  • Conflict and tension continue to escalate in your relationship
  • One (or both) of you have developed unkind, spiteful communication habits
  • Not feeling “in love” anymore (‘I still love you, but I’m just not in love anymore.’)
  • Commitment and trust issues, like not being able to rely on each other
  • Dealing with insecurities related to poor self-esteem or abandonment fears, which can manifest as extreme dependence or independence
  • Struggling to open up emotionally or feeling like your emotions aren’t a priority
  • A lack of sexual intimacy, or even none whatsoever
  • Facing major obstacles like affairs, abuse, and/or addictions
  • Inability to agree on finances
  • One or both of you are experiencing symptoms of depression and anxiety

If your relationship is enduring one—or several—of these persistent issues, couples counseling can improve both day-to-day life and your long-term outlook as partners.

You should also know that in one recent survey, an astounding 99% of people attending couples counseling felt it was having a positive impact1 on their relationship.

What are some common relationship issues that couples counseling can address?

Common relationship issues that couples counseling can address include:

  • Miscommunications that’re making life harder
  • Intimate and sexual issues
  • Addiction and addictive behaviors
  • Recovering from an affair
  • Mental health issues which are interfering with your relationship
  • Healing from grief and loss
  • Blended family and remarriage challenges
  • Major life transitions like retirement or becoming empty nesters
  • Power struggles related to money, parenting, or other tough topics
  • Problems with extended family that stem from a lack of boundaries
  • Feeling disconnected or just plain not “in love” anymore
  • And almost any other issue plaguing what was once a fantastic relationship

What if one partner feels uncomfortable or resistant during the counseling process?

If one partner is uncomfortable or resistant during the counseling process, the best thing to do is explore those concerns, validate them, and get clear on what couples counseling really is.

In many cases, this hesitancy can be traced back to beliefs or fears that aren’t 100% based in reality.

For example, let’s say one partner has been wanting to try therapy for ages. The other finally gives in, but is clearly disinterested as the first session begins. Your counselor might ask about the basis of this negative opinion.

At this moment, it’s common for the less enthused partner to say they expect to be told they’re wrong about everything and need to change their behavior.

Then, your expert couples therapist will take time to explain how these expectations don’t align with our process at Hawkins Counseling Center. It’s not our job to say who’s right or wrong, and you won’t benefit from us quoting statistics or mantras.

Instead, we focus entirely on helping you two overcome these differences and build the best possible relationship you can have.

When we frame couples therapy this way—in terms of how it’ll improve your life both short and long-term—resistant partners tend to open up quite a bit.

Can couples counseling help if one partner has cheated?

Yes, studies show that it’s possible for couples counseling to help mend your relationship if one partner has cheated2. At the same time, you have to remember there are no ‘silver bullets’ or ‘magic wands’ when it comes to this topic.

You see, it’s true that working with an experienced Boynton Beach couples therapist can simplify the process of rebuilding trust and intimacy.

But the nature of the affair, any past trauma either of you have related to cheating, and your own interest in repairing the relationship are also huge factors. Couples counseling can help if both you and your partner commit to healing and moving forward.

Can couples counseling help with trust issues in the relationship?

Yes, couples counseling can be a huge help with trust issues in your relationship. While every couple is different, an experienced couples therapist understands how the human mind and emotions work in a romantic relationship.

With their guidance and support, you two can finally rebuild a strong foundation of trust by resolving the core cause(s) of your mistrust.

Can couples counseling help with communication issues?

Yes, couples counseling can help with communication issues and the source of these hurdles. Because the thing is, great communication isn’t as simple as saying what you mean.

Communication is like a thread woven throughout every aspect of your relationship. When it’s tangled or knotted up, you’re likely to struggle with new and unforeseen issues. Working with one of our couples counselors will help you both understand not just how to communicate well, but also why good communication should be a priority every day.

How often should we attend couples counseling sessions?

The right frequency of couples counseling sessions depends on your goals, but a good rule of thumb is every week.

Think about this in terms of learning any new skill—would you get more benefit and learn more from eight sessions over eight weeks, or eight sessions over eight months?

That said, it all depends on the issues you’re facing as a couple. Weekly, biweekly, and monthly sessions are all potential options. During your first session, your counselor will ask what works best with your schedules and suggest a cadence for the first couple months.

What if we’ve already tried couples counseling before and it didn’t work?

If you’ve already tried couples counseling before and it didn’t work, you may not have been working with the best therapist for your unique needs. While therapists in the US are required to hold certain degrees and licenses, the exact way they provide therapy is mostly up to them.

So, it’s very likely that your previous counselor’s approach just wasn’t the right fit for your goals and issues.

Frankly, this scenario is more common than you might think. It’s why so many couples need to “shop around” a bit before finding the right couples therapist. And here at Hawkins Counseling Center in Boynton Beach, we strive to do things a little differently.

Our couples counseling sessions are designed to help you both grow closer and learn during the actual session, not in the days between. We aren’t interested in playing referee for your relationship.

We’re completely focused on what brings you together, not what drives you apart.

If you’re ready to learn more about our unique perspective on couples therapy and how it can benefit your relationship, contact us today at 561-316-6553.


Boynton Beach Counseling Center
Hawkins Counseling Center
1034 Gateway Blvd.
Boynton Beach, FL 33426
Phone: ‪(561) 316-6553‬