Couples' Intensives

Should I stay or should I go? Are you interested in improving your relationship and learning how to live a more relationally skilled life? In these intensives, Clare Mézes, MSc, RP, guides couples in reconnecting and rebuilding their relationship, or, if needed, helps them navigate the challenges of ending the relationship.

The Couples' Intensive Series

Couples' Intensives are offered to couples with complicated life stories, including family of origin trauma, extramarital affairs, addictions, sexuality concerns, and other sensitive issues.

Couples' Intensives focus on naming the truth about a couple's relationship in order to decide whether the relationship can be worked on or not. If the relationship is workable, couples are guided through a process of learning new relational life skills. This helps them to reconnect and rebuild their relationship. If the relationship is unworkable, couples are guided through a process to end their relationship.

Couples' Intensives involve 12 - 20 hours of intensive time and profound work over a period of 3 to 5 months.

A couple can choose to attend for two and a half to three hours at a time, or for a full day.

These longer session times are productive for those who are at a challenging place in their relationship, would like to learn deeply about how their past impacts their current relationship, would like to feel more compassion for one another, as well as gain new skills with which to move forward.

What Can Be Addressed In Couples' Intensives?

Intensives involve an in-depth assessment of the issues causing distance in the couples' relationship and provide the tools they need to appreciate and feel closer to one another.

At these sessions, Clare:

  • Moves couples forward by creatively confronting the difficult truth, right from the get-go.
  • Teaches people new skills and works with the parts that are stuck and that resist using them.
  • Teaches people to stop using their knee-jerk reaction, and instead, find their mature self that is willing to cherish the relationship.
  • Uses the worst of the relationship as leverage and motivation for taking a step towards health and wholeness.
  • Focuses on helping a couple become moderate, pays attention to grandiosity by helping clients come down from being one-up, and empowers clients who are depressed or one-down to come up to a place of moderation.
  • Teaches couples the skills required to assess losing strategies and move to winning strategies
  • Gives women the tools of relational empowerment and men the tools of relational reawakening, so that women can be more assertive and men can learn to be more open and present
  • Teaches the practice of self-esteem and how to use protective/containing boundaries to be connected and protected in relationships
  • Deals with issues of character with people who have complicated life stories, including family-of-origin trauma, extramarital affairs, addictions, and/or sexuality concerns.
  • Accesses The Relationship Grid™ by Terrence Real, a powerful diagnostic tool that indicates how the couple is showing up at the worst of times, and where they must go to heal the relationship.
  • Uses non-verbal techniques to assist couples in showing each other what they are unable to say directly.
  • Teaches couples how to connect sexually by being more attuned to each other's physi­cal needs, without judgement, using healthy boundaries, being respectful and honest, and by giving themselves permission to be vulnerable.
  • Helps couples build parenting skills to strengthen their child's core and encourage their child to shift from destructive behaviour and negative outside influences to more meaningful family and social connections. Facilitates couples to create a positive family environment.

Couples' Therapy

  • Losing strategies in your relationship include needing to be right, controlling your partner, unbridled self-expression, retaliation and withdrawal. Before you can move into repair, you must first move out of your losing-strategy or adaptive child responses and into a wise adult self. In this way, you can turn toward each other using the winning strategies of asking for what you need, listening with a generous heart, giving whatever you can, and cherishing and loving each other.
    - Terry Real, 2007
  • Woman are unhappy in their marriages. They feel unheard and overburdened and live in a chronic state of slow-burn resentment. Men are unhappy that the women they love are so unhappy with them. Following the script with which they've been raised, men feel bewildered, unappreciated, and betrayed.
    - Terry Real, 2002
  • The Golden Rule of Relational Life Therapy: What can I give you to help you give me what I want?
    - Terry Real, 2007
  • Intimacy - the thing we all long for, if we're really honest with ourselves, the touch of human connection that heals, that fulfills, the only thing in our lives capable of rendering us truly happy, intimacy is not something you have, it's something you do. And you can learn to do it better.
    - Terry Real, 2022

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If you would like more information about Clare's practice, counselling services, or intensives, please call or email.

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