571-222-5180 (Gainesville) ... 571-699-0160 (Alexandria)

Parenting Support for Couples

Having and raising children can be the most rewarding life experience for couples. However, it can also be the most challenging. Talk about a major life change. We often don’t consider how much it can change the relationship of a couple. There are many studies that state that being parents can contribute in a negative shift in marriage. Many parents report that the quality of their relationship drops within three years of the birth of a child.

It’s critical to provide support to couples to help them maneuver the highs and lows of parenting. Providing the educational tools, a safe place in which to openly share, and a place where goals can be identified, are all important steps to strengthening the couples’ relationship. We will be providing 9 or 10 sessions to support couples who are in conflict due to parenting concerns.

The topics include the following:

Topic 1: Introductory Session

In this session the therapist will work with the clients to assess their current relationship function and receive an overview of their parenting styles. They will identify their concerns and what they believe is working/not working. They will work with the therapists to develop therapeutic goals.

Topic 2: Communication Skills

The couple will work on techniques for reflective listening. They will learn how use “I” statements, handle negative communication from children, and improve conflict resolution skills.

Topic 3: Discipline (2 sessions)

The couple will learn how to create effective rules for parenting their children. They will learn to determine appropriate consequences and rewards and set boundaries with one another and the children. They will be given assignments regarding trying some new rules at home and debriefing in second session to adjust as necessary.

Topic 4: Relationship building as a family and as a couple

The therapist will help the couple identify what they enjoy as a couple and believe the family would enjoy without undue stress. They will work on overcoming obstacles to family and couples time.

Topic 5: Self-Care

The couples will learn how to address their stress level and overcome obstacles to self-care. They will learn how to respect their personal time and support their partner by respecting their partner’s personal time.

Topic 6: Parenting as a team

The couple will identify what is working well and problem solve areas needing improvement. They will work as a team to identify expectation of one another as parents and expectations of their children.

Topic 7: Special Topics

Some of the special topics that can be addressed in the session include: parenting teens, becoming a new parent, blended families, addressing concerns of adult children in the home, parenting after divorce or separation, or parenting when one parent is gone for lengthy periods of time (i.e. deployment).