Couple and Family Therapy

Graphic list bullet Are you finding it harder to discuss important issues with your partner without it resulting in conflict?

Graphic list bullet Is there a distance in your relationship?

Graphic list bullet Is one of you more interested in the relationship than the other?

Graphic list bullet Does a desire to be heard and understood often result in a process of blaming and alienation?

Graphic list bullet Is there discomfort with either emotional or sexual intimacy with your partner?

Graphic list bullet Is there a painful affair or other betrayal of trust that is creating an obstacle to a satisfying relationship?

Graphic list bullet Has it been hard to make the transition from a couple to a family?

Graphic list bullet Are there increasing conflicts about parenting that make it difficult to support each other as parents?

Graphic list bullet Is your child demonstrating emotional or behavioral problems that are challenging you as a parent?

Graphic list bullet Are you experiencing the overwhelming challenges of creating and maintaining a functional blended family?

The differences you are experiencing may be relatively recent or long standing. The duration is less important than the need to address the challenges in a way that is both effective and respectful of all parties. As we work together we will clarify the feelings that underlie the issues. We will identify the unacknowledged emotional needs that the arguments represent. This will be a forum in which everyone is offered the opportunity to express their thoughts and feelings respectfully and safely.

When working with you as a couple, I will take an active role and often give homework. I will help you understand how your experience of the relationship affects the way you interact with each other. I will help you speak to each other in a way that allows you to be heard and to listen in a way that allows your partner to know they are known by you. You will learn ways to talk about even the most challenging issues such as control, power, sex, and money, without getting bogged down in arguments and dead ends. I will help you become partners in each other’s healing.

When working with you as a family, I will also be quite active as this is necessary to create a forum for safety and change. One of my guiding principles is to enhance the connections between family members, while at the same time encouraging age appropriate responsibility and individuation. You will teach me the history, values, and culture of your family so that I can be respectful of the context. You will become clearer about roles, boundaries, and the meaning of behaviors in your family. You will learn to identify the strengths and challenges of each family member so that you can use this information to create an enjoyable place of fulfillment and growth for each of you.


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The Couples Institute Developmental Model graduate seal

Graduate of The Developmental Model of Couples Therapy Training under Ellyn Bader Ph.D. at The Couples Institute.

Susan J. Buniva
5206 Markel Road, Suite 106
Richmond, VA 23230
Phone (804) 677-7721
Copyright © 2018, Susan J. Buniva