Why aren’t more Couples Therapists helpful?

They Don't Lead

"We saw two counselors before you.  We'd get angry and start fighting, right in the office, and they'd just sit there. It got ugly fast."

They Take Sides

"After one joint session, she asked to meet with me alone.  She told me he was just like her ex-husband and I should divorce him..." 

They Avoid the Topic of Sex

"Intimacy?  No, that never came up.  I wish that it did, because we have real problems in that area.  We haven't been close in a while."


Alan Gurman,PhD. 

 Clinical Psychologist 


Direct clinical experience with couples is not required anywhere for licensure as a mental health professional, even for licensure as a marriage and family therapist.

A. Gurman & M. Burton (2014).
Journal of Marriage & Family Therapy

No training, their sessions are too short & not enough targeted supervised experience.

Insurance companies don't pay for couples therapy, so public agencies can't bill for it. Without financial support, trainees just can't get the experience they need to become skilled couples therapists. 

It is one of the best kept secrets (and tragedies) in mental healthcare today.

Do the Math:

Insurance pays therapists to treat individuals with mental illness for 45- minute sessions. While these insurance corporations don't reimburse for couples therapy, if a therapist does see couples, it is within that limited time frame.

1 person in session = 45 minute sessions. 

2 people in session =  ___ ? 

Research says 80-90  minutes.

The sad fact is that most Couples Therapy is done by insurance-reimbursed therapists in a haphazard fashion, working half the time they need, to provide services for which they have little or no training...

 Dr. Bill Doherty 

 Author, Discernment Counseling  


Most therapists learn couples therapy after they get licensed, through workshops and by trial and error. Most have never had anyone observe or critique their couples work.          ~Putting Family First, 2002, p. 26

 Dr. Kathy McMahon 

 Psychologist, Pres. of Couples Therapy Inc. 


I go through hundreds of websites and resumes on an ongoing basis looking for qualified couples therapists. Most of them believe they are  skilled enough to do it. A thimble-full actually are. 'Certified' means that someone actually watched you do it and said: 'They know what they are doing...'

We facilitate real change.

Will a science-based approach help your relationship? Find out.