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The Couples Therapist Couch is a podcast by licensed marriage and family therapist, Shane Birkel. The show provides education, support, and connection for Couples Therapists, Marriage Counselors, and Relationship Coaches. Each week Shane interviews an expert in the field of Couples Therapy to explore all about the world of relationships and how to be an amazing therapist.
 
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This is the seventh in a series of ten episodes that are about inspiration and hope during this time of Covid-19. Most of the interviewees are therapists and offer support and perspective for getting through stressful situations. The episodes were mostly recorded around late March and early April. In this episode, Elisha and James Travis talk about…
 
This is the sixth in a series of ten episodes that are about inspiration and hope during this time of Covid-19. Most of the interviewees are therapists and offer support and perspective for getting through stressful situations. The episodes were mostly recorded around late March and early April. In this episode I talked with Breta Collins about cre…
 
This is the fifth in a series of ten episodes that are about inspiration and hope during this time of Covid-19. Most of the interviewees are therapists and offer support and perspective for getting through stressful situations. The episodes were mostly recorded around late March and early April. Thank you to Jerry Sander for joining us today and sh…
 
This is the fourth in a series of ten episodes that are about inspiration and hope during this time of Covid-19. Most of the interviewees are therapists and offer support and perspective for getting through stressful situations. The episodes were mostly recorded around late March and early April. Thank you to Janeen Herskovitz for joining us today …
 
This is the third in a series of ten episodes that are about inspiration and hope during this time of Covid-19. Most of the interviewees are therapists and offer support and perspective for getting through stressful situations. The episodes were mostly recorded around early April. Thank you to Jeanne Farnsworth from North Dakota for joining us toda…
 
This is the second of a series of ten episodes that are about inspiration and hope during this time of Covid-19. Most of the interviewees are therapists and offer support and perspective for getting through stressful situations. The episodes were mostly recorded around early April. Thank you to Selma Selma Bacevac in Jacksonville Florida for taking…
 
This is the first of a series of ten episodes that are about inspiration and hope during this time of Covid-19. Most of the interviewees are therapists and offer support and perspective for getting through stressful situations. The episodes were mostly recorded around early April. Quentin Hafner is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in Orange…
 
Show notes to come... The Couples Therapist Couch is the podcast for Couples Therapists about the practice of couples therapy. The host, Shane Birkel, interviews an expert in the field of couples therapy each week. Please subscribe to the podcast for more great episodes. The episode this week is being sponsored by the Couples Therapist Inner Circle…
 
The episode this week is with Jourdan Virginia Blue. She talks all about the innovative approach to working with couples that she has created. Secret Love Hacks is a 12 week couples therapy approach that any therapist can use with their couples. All the sessions are direct, fast paced, easy to teach and easy to apply. Find out more at https://moder…
 
Dr. Peggy Kleinplatz is a Professor in the Faculty of Medicine and Director of Sex and Couples Therapy at the University of Ottawa, Canada. She was awarded the Prix d’Excellence in 2000 for her teaching of Human Sexuality. She is a Certified Sex Therapist and Educator. She is Director of the Optimal Sexual Experiences Research Team of the Universit…
 
This is a very important conversation with Dr. James Hawkins about Racialized Trauma, Racial Injustice, Privilege, Institutional Racism, and Black Lives Matter. James approaches this topic from his experience in EFT and attachment. Dr. James Hawkins is an Emotionally Focused Therapist and trainer. You can find out more about him at dochawklpc.com a…
 
In the episode today, Dr. Marni Feuerman talks about why couples therapists make the best individual therapists. We discuss how important relationships are in everyone's lives even those who are single. We also talk about using dating apps, being a respectful dater, and what the dating scene looks like these days. Dr. Marni Feuerman is a licensed p…
 
In this episode, Dr. Joe Kort talks about when a straight spouse finds out that her husband has been with other men. He talks about the problems with defining acting out sexual behaviors as sex addiction as well as how to work with people in a sex positive way. Joe is an AASECT Certified Sex Therapist & Supervisor of Sex Therapy. He is the author o…
 
This episode is a brief summary of some of how Relational Life Therapy is different from other models of couples therapy. I am a certified RLT therapist and have been mentored by Terry Real. I talk all about shame, grandiosity, patriarchy, self-esteem, boundaries, and leverage. Terry Real is the creator of Relational Life Therapy. You can find out …
 
The episode this week was with two guests, Dr. Corey Yeager and Dr. Kirsten Lind Seal. They discuss the reality of race and privilege in therapy. At one point Corey said, there is no such thing as cultural competence. That implies arrival. What is more appropriate is the idea of cultural understanding and responsiveness. As human beings we will alw…
 
In this episode, Dr. James Hawkins and I explore therapist's process of growing their ability to implement the EFT model specifically. We also talked a lot about self of therapist in the room and how we have the ability to have a big impact on society. Dr. James Hawkins is an Emotionally Focused Therapist and trainer. You can find out more about hi…
 
When it comes to sex in our society there is actually very little that has been written on it historically, particularly about female sexuality. At the same time it is one of the topics that people have the most interest in and influences so many of the decisions in our lives. In this episode, Dr. Emily Nagoski talks about desire, context, dual con…
 
The quarantine continues for much of the world and we are all doing what we can to cope. As therapists, we have scrambled to transition to online therapy, experienced huge changes in our caseloads and are dealing with the unpredictability of what's next. In this episode Jen Silacci talks about how we can cope with these difficult times. She describ…
 
These times during the Coronavirus Pandemic have been extremely stressful on many different levels. As we all switch over to online therapy, it is important to be mindful of the emotional this is taking on us and think about how we can be making sure to take good care of ourselves. Dr. Amber Lyda has been doing online therapy for awhile now and has…
 
Because of the history of power and influence in our world, we are socialized in ways that impact our relationships in a huge way. If we aren't aware of these realities, we might behave in inappropriate or boundary violating ways that are offensive to the people we care about the most. Dr. David Wexler talks about this topic and what we can do to l…
 
In this episode with Kimberly Gist Miller we talk about using the Developmental Model in working with Affairs. Many of the clients we work with have a lot of trauma and it is so important to know that history and to know how to work with it. Kimberly Gist Miller is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in Frisco, Texas, outside of Dallas. She sp…
 
This episode is a recording of a webinar I did recently with the Couples Therapist Couch Facebook group. We talk about the implications of this time during the coronavirus pandemic. The Couples Therapist Couch is the podcast for Couples Therapists about the practice of couples therapy. The host, Shane Birkel, interviews an expert in the field of co…
 
In the last few days we are seeing changes in our whole society that are bigger and happening more quickly than anything else in decades. At some point in the coming weeks, most of us will have to consider seeing clients online as restrictions continue because of the Coronavirus. This is a special episode with Clay Cockrell which specifically addre…
 
Most Couples Therapists understand the importance of bringing sex into the conversation in couples therapy. Unfortunately, most feel unprepared to know what questions to ask, how to make clients feel comfortable, and what to do with the information once it is part of the conversation. In this episode, Sex Therapist, Martha Kauppi and I talk all abo…
 
We often see clients in our offices who are struggling with things like a lack of fulfillment, a deep sense that something isn't right with me, a feeling of disconnection, and a lack of emotional intelligence. It can be hard to know how to work with these clients and help them make connections about why they might be feeling these things. In this e…
 
How is masturbation being used in the couple--as a path of least resistance to avoid confronting sexual/relational issues or as an add-on to an otherwise good shared sex life? How can couples balance the right to self-pleasure against the right to a sexually available partner? Does masturbation use up sexual interest--or kindle it? Does it matter w…
 
One of the most difficult thing we do as couples therapists is to get both members of a couple to feel like we get them and we want what is best for them. In this episode, EFT trainer and supervisor, Ryan Rana, walks us through the process of attuning to a client's deepest pain or attachment dilemma. Once we show them that we "get it," they will be…
 
When couples are unable to communicate because they get emotionally escalated, it is often a result of trauma. Dr. Janina Fisher helps people become aware of these emotions and parts of themselves in a way that they can begin to heal and grow and improve their relationships. Janina Fisher, PhD is a licensed Clinical Psychologist and Instructor at t…
 
Women are expected to be sexy, but not sexual. We’re bombarded with conflicting, shame-inducing, and disempowering messages about sex, instead of being encouraged to connect with our true sexual selves. Sexy gets reduced to a performance, leaving us with little to no space to reckon with the complexities of sexuality. In a culture intent on telling…
 
We often have clients who are shut down emotionally and don't understand why. It is difficult for them to access their emotions. Most of the time this is due to living in a family where emotional expression either wasn't modeled or encouraged, or where it was actively shut down. This emotional neglect is abusive and shaming to children, but most pe…
 
In talking about factors that destroy relationships, Dr. Pat Love speaks with such depth and wisdom about all the things that are required to have a secure, healthy relationship. She talks about emotional security, attachment, systems theory, the relational set up, being flexible and spontaneous and so much more that we often take for granted in ou…
 
Why do we love in the first place? Why do we choose the partners we choose? What happens in the brain when people fall in love? These are all questions that Helen Fisher has spent her career answering. Helen E. Fisher, PhD is a biological anthropologist, and Senior Research Fellow, at The Kinsey Institute, Indiana University. She has written six bo…
 
When looking at sexual betrayal, many people in our society simplify it down to the fact that the betrayer is bad, wrong, and should be cut off. This leaves out the opportunity of a much more complex way of viewing these situations. To think about this with a more open mind is not to say that there is no accountability on the part of the betrayer, …
 
How do unfaithful partners typically respond differently than hurt partners after an affair? What constitutes an affair - intercourse? Instant messaging? Flirting? How can unfaithful partners take responsibility for the damage they caused and earn forgiveness? These are just a few of the many questions that leave couples feeling confused about what…
 
This special episode is part of a 6 video business bonus that you can get for signing up for the Couples Therapist Inner Circle. In this episode, Laura Long talks about marketing, niching, websites, and networking. She discusses the importance of thinking about what makes Couples Therapists different and encourages us to think about how we will app…
 
In this episode, Kine Corder talks about removing blocks to success, particularly stress. We talk all about money, marriage and maturing. Kine Corder helps people who have achieved success by society's standards, but still feel that they are missing something. She has a podcast called the Love and Money podcast, is a best selling author, psychother…
 
In this episode, Dr. Sue Johnson talks about the beginning of Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy and the lack of options for Couples Therapists to get training at the time. Dr. Sue Johnson is an author, clinical psychologist, researcher, professor, popular presenter and speaker and a leading innovator in the field of couple therapy and adult attac…
 
This episode is packed full with advice for how to do good couples therapy. Some of the topics covered are the 6 types of confrontation, rethinking 1st sessions, and how to incorporate attachment theory, differentiation, and neuroscience. Dr. Ellyn Bader is the co-founder of the Developmental Model for Couples Therapy. She and Dr. Peter Pearson co-…
 
One of the things we hear most frequently in our office as Couples Therapists is partners with differing levels of sexual desire. For a number of reasons this most often takes the form of a male partner desiring more sex than the female partner. Susan Bratton does a wonderful job of flipping conventional wisdom on it's head and giving us some great…
 
In this episode, Kerry Lusignan talks about the benefits and structure of a couples intensive. Couples intensives are becoming more and more popular and are more effective for helping couples make deeper, more lasting progress. Kerry is the founder of Northampton Center for Couples Therapy in Northampton, MA. She has extensive training in several d…
 
One of the most difficult situations that couples face is when there has been an affair and they are trying to heal. Every one of these situations is unique and different, but there are some general themes that tend to come up a lot. When partners can learn the skills and are willing to work at it, the recovery can go much more smoothly. These skil…
 
Today we celebrate the 100th episode of The Couples Therapist Couch with a rerun of one of the most popular episodes. Thanks for all your support! This episode explores fundamental questions like why do we fall in love, why do couples fight and how can couples work through conflict? Harville Hendrix has been on the forefront of teaching about relat…
 
Many people in our society have a belief that conflict is always a bad thing and should be avoided at all costs. In the interview today we unravel this myth about conflict and explore how it is not only helpful to relationships, but also essential. That is not to say it is always a good thing and it is very important to understand how we are approa…
 
When one or both couples are on the Autism Spectrum or label themselves as Aspergers, it can be incredibly helpful to be understanding of particular things that will be helpful for working with these specific couples. In this episode, Grace Myhill talks about particular topics that neurodiverse couples often seek help with. Here is a paragraph from…
 
In the history of our society there has been a huge amount of shame for women about their own desires. There is still a pervasive problem of not talking about what is going on and what people really want. Because no one is talking about it, no one feels accepted or validated about their desire. Author, Lisa Taddeo, breaks this silence in her book T…
 
In this episode about Solution Focused Brief Therapy, Elliot Connie talks about some amazing strategies to help couples achieve great results in their relationships. He goes into details about how much of psychotherapy is all wrong, asking the right questions, and letting the client take the lead. He describes how asking people what they want in a …
 
In this episode with Jan Bergstrom, we go into depth about the 5 Core Practices of a Healthy Life. This work was inspired by Pia Mellody and has become the foundation for many models of therapy. We talk about doing inner child work, feelings reduction work, and standing in your truth. We also touch on the importance of self-esteem and boundaries. J…
 
In this episode, Ari Tuckman describes how he often sees clients where what is being defined as "problematic behavior" is actually due to undiagnosed ADHD. Ari gives us a lot of information about how to work with these clients and how to help them feel more connected. Ari is an expert at working with ADHD, relationships and is also a sex therapist.…
 
When it comes to communication, there are differences in the way that we are socialized as men and women. In this conversation with Robert Kandell, he breaks down some important aspects of that communication so that people can be more successful and connected. Robert is an accomplished teacher, coach, and lecturer. An expert in interpersonal commun…
 
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