Expert Couples Therapy in Santa Monica

We’re a therapist owned company here to support couples in a new way, right in Santa Monica. Just because it’s an idyllic place to live doesn’t mean that relationships are always smooth sailing. Welcome to Well Marriage Center, where we understand that building and maintaining a strong and fulfilling partnership requires dedicated effort, effective communication, and sometimes, professional guidance.

Your Local Partner in Couples Therapy

At our office in Santa Monica, we are your local partner in expert couples therapy and marriage counseling. Our compassionate and experienced therapists are devoted to helping you and your partner navigate the complexities of your relationship. Whether you’re looking to grow closer, improve communication, resolve conflicts, set boundaries, tackle past traumas, rekindle intimacy, or address any other challenges, our tailored approach will empower you to overcome obstacles and create a deeper connection. We use a modern, strengths-based approach that has helped over 15,000 couples find their way back to each other.

Experience Matters: Our Proven Track Record

With decades of clinical experience, as well as a supportive environment for continuing our therapists’ training, Well Marriage Center has shown verifiable success with couples. Our specialized therapists help over 3,000 couples each year create happier, more fulfilling relationships. When you choose Well Marriage Center, you’re choosing a partner with the knowledge and expertise to make a real difference in your relationship.

Tailored Solutions for Every Journey

Just as Santa Monica is a unique blend of individuals, each relationship is its own distinctive journey. We embrace this diversity and provide tailored solutions to address your specific needs. Our range of specialties includes communication enhancement, conflict resolution, family dynamics, trauma healing, intimacy revitalization, changes, and more. Whatever your relationship requires, our skilled therapists are here to support you. We help all couples and individuals who are ready to work on their relational wellness.

Accessibility and Affordability: Prioritizing Your Relationship

We believe that all people can benefit from our services, and our counseling fees are designed to be reasonable and in line with local standards. We also assist many of our clients in obtaining reimbursements through their insurance providers, further prioritizing the health of your relationships.

Invest in Your Relationship Today

Your journey to a stronger and more fulfilling partnership begins with expert couples therapy at Well Marriage Center in Santa Monica. Our compassionate team is committed to providing a safe and non-judgmental space for you and your partner to explore and resolve sensitive matters. Let us be your ally in nurturing growth, understanding, and connection.

Reach out to our intake team today to learn more about our counseling options and begin revitalizing your relationship with us. You can also read more about our approach, or explore further topics in our Relationship Insights blog.

Is Virtual Couples Therapy Effective?

In today’s rapidly evolving digital landscape, technology has woven itself into nearly every aspect of our lives, including the realm of mental health care. Virtual couples therapy, once a novel concept, has now become a mainstream avenue for couples seeking guidance and support. The question that often arises is whether virtual couples therapy can be as effective as traditional, in-person sessions. Not only have we found it to be as effective in our own practice post-covid, we also know that scientific evidence that supports the efficacy of virtual couples therapy and discuss the pros and cons of this innovative approach.

The Science Behind Virtual Couples Therapy:

  1. Effective Communication: Research suggests that effective communication lies at the heart of healthy relationships – it’s how most of our issues, needs and wants are expressed. A study published in the “Journal of Marital and Family Therapy” (2017) found that virtual therapy promotes open and honest communication between partners. In fact, virtual sessions can reduce inhibitions, allowing couples to express their feelings more freely. Think of it as less formal, happening right in your comfort zone (or wherever you find yourself at that time.)
  2. Accessibility and Convenience: Virtual therapy offers unparalleled accessibility and convenience. A study published in the “Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare” (2019) reported that virtual therapy sessions eliminate geographical barriers, making it possible for couples to seek help regardless of their physical location, or even physical abilities. This is especially beneficial for couples with busy schedules, travel hinderances, or those residing in remote areas.
  3. Anonymity and Reduced Stigma: Anonymity can empower couples to address sensitive issues more openly. A study in the “Journal of Medical Internet Research” (2013) found that individuals are more likely to disclose personal information in virtual settings. For couples facing societal or cultural barriers, virtual therapy can provide a safe space to navigate complex topics, while allowing couples to stay in a more vulnerable (and thereby more beneficial to their therapy goals) state.
  4. Therapist-Client Relationship: The bond between therapist and clients is crucial for successful therapy outcomes. Research published in the “Journal of Affective Disorders” (2020) revealed that the quality of the therapist-client relationship in virtual therapy is comparable to in-person therapy, highlighting the potential for strong therapeutic alliances in virtual settings.

Pros of Virtual Couples Therapy:

  1. Flexibility: Virtual therapy allows couples to schedule sessions at times that suit their routines, accommodating work schedules, childcare responsibilities, and other commitments.
  2. Comfort and Familiarity: Couples can engage in therapy from the comfort of their own environment, potentially reducing feelings of intimidation often associated with clinical settings.
  3. Accessibility: Virtual therapy eliminates the need for travel, making therapy accessible to those who might otherwise face challenges in reaching a therapist’s office.
  4. Privacy and Confidentiality: Virtual sessions can provide an added layer of privacy, making it easier for couples to discuss sensitive topics without fear of being seen or recognized.

Cons of Virtual Couples Therapy:

  1. Technological Challenges: Technical issues, such as poor internet connectivity or glitches, may disrupt the flow of therapy sessions and impact the overall experience. We have found with our virtual clients that this is rare these days, considering how integrated our culture is with online life. Most people, especially those reading about virtual therapy, have access to decent internet and a smartphone or laptop.
  2. Distractions: The home environment could introduce distractions that hinder the focus and depth of the therapy session. However, it also allows therapists to witness clients in their natural environment and can give valuable insight.
  3. Lack of Physical Presence: While virtual therapy can be effective, some couples may still value the in-person connection and energy that comes with face-to-face interactions. We find that when you have an excellent therapist, the energy and focus transcends the virtual screen.

The evolving landscape of mental health care has paved the way for virtual couples therapy to emerge as a viable and effective option. Backed by scientific research, this mode of therapy has demonstrated its ability to facilitate open communication, transcend geographical barriers, and foster meaningful therapist-client relationships.

As with any approach, virtual therapy comes with its own set of pros and cons, and couples should weigh these factors based on their unique needs and circumstances. Many of our clients at Well Marriage begin with in-person sessions and move to virtual, once they are comfortable with the therapeutic process. However you decide to grow together, we’re here to support your goals.

Well Marriage Center remains dedicated to providing evidence-based support and guidance, whether in person, virtually, or even through a hybrid model to help couples navigate the complex terrain of relationships and find the path to a healthier, happier partnership.

The Evolution of Marriage Counseling – Does It Work?

Historically, marriage counseling and couples therapy got a bad rap. The old joke was that when you started therapy, you knew your relationship was over. However, this tired trope couldn’t be farther from the truth!

Marriage Counseling in the Past

It often consisted of one therapist, whether they were an actual, trained psychoanalyst or not, working independently with a husband and wife to determine what went wrong, who was to blame, and offering a mix of analysis and advice. In the past, these therapists did not offer much support in ways to improve or save the relationship and it was common in the field to remain detached on the matter. This has led to many flawed, preconcieved notions about what modern couples therapy is like and how effective it is now.

Modern Couples Therapy and Marriage Counseling

Modern couples therapy has emerged as an integrative, important, and verifiable field, although it is still constantly evolving. Specialized therapists now, like ours at Well Marriage, draw from many couples therapy techniques to create a catered approach that works to address each couple’s unique obstacles. With a focus on the original strengths of the relationship, we work on building trust and fostering a sense of teamwork so that the deeper issues can be tackled together. Deeper issues often include individual disorders, past trauma, affairs and broken communication systems. By using integrative techniques and pulling from science-backed, clinically-proven methods, we’re able to see and track real success in partner’s emotional well-being and quality of life.

Additionally, compared to the static, older practice of marriage counseling, where what went wrong and who is to blame was the basis for helping a sliver of the population, modern couples therapy is now “a vehicle for helping with intimate relationships across gender, sexual preference, class, culture, race, ethnicity, and other facets of social location” (Fam Process, 2022.)

A Mature Discipline

With more research has come more techniques that therapists can draw from and incorporate into their treatment plans. Since every relationship is unique, every therapeupitic journey has to be adaptable but verifiably sound.

Couples therapy has come to incorporate “a wide array of distinct treatments, and a stronger evidence base both in the efficacy of therapies and in its foundation in the emerging body of relational science. Couples therapy has also broadened its conceptual framework to incorporate feminism, multiculturalism, and a broader view of gender and sexuality. Thus, “couple” now speaks to a much broader diversity of couples.

Indeed, the continuing evolution of couple therapy now incorporates the increased use of social media and technology as well as open discussions about LGBTQ rights, gender equity, racism, social justice, politics, sexuality, individuality, freedom, and gender identity (). This era also includes the flourishing of numerous integrative methods and the development of couple therapy as a format for treating problems of individual partners” (Fam Process, 2022.)

11 Ways Marriage Counseling Has Evolved

Over the past few decades, couples therapy has evolved significantly, adapting to changing societal norms, advancements in research, and emerging therapeutic approaches. Some key ways in which couples therapy has during the history of marriage and family therapy are:

  1. From Blame to Collaboration: Earlier models of couples therapy often focused on assigning blame and identifying one partner as the problem. However, modern couples therapy has shifted towards a more collaborative approach, where both partners are seen as active participants in the relationship dynamics. Therapists now emphasize understanding each partner’s perspective and working together to find solutions.
  2. Inclusion of LGBTQ+ Couples: Historically, couples therapy primarily focused on heterosexual relationships. With the increasing recognition of LGBTQ+ rights and relationships, couples therapy has become more inclusive, providing specialized support and understanding for same-sex couples and those with diverse gender identities.
  3. Diversity and Cultural Sensitivity: Modern couples therapy recognizes and values the importance of cultural, racial, and ethnic diversity. Therapists are now more attuned to cultural differences and the impact of cultural norms on relationships, making efforts to provide culturally sensitive and inclusive counseling.
  4. Integrating New Theoretical Approaches: Over the years, various theoretical approaches to couples therapy have emerged, such as Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT), Gottman Method Couples Therapy, and Narrative Therapy. Therapists now integrate these evidence-based approaches, tailoring their methods to suit the unique needs of each couple.
  5. Focus on Emotional Connection: Emotions play a vital role in relationships, and modern couples therapy emphasizes the importance of emotional connection and vulnerability. Therapists help couples express and understand their emotions, fostering empathy and closeness.
  6. Online and Virtual Counseling: With advancements in technology, couples therapy has become more accessible through online platforms and digital counseling. Virtual therapy sessions allow couples to seek help from the comfort of their homes, reaching a broader range of clients. At Well Marriage, we found during Covid lockdown that virtual therapy is just as effective as in-person when couples are working with a skilled relationship specialist.
  7. Short-Term and Solution-Focused Therapy: While traditional couples therapy could be long-term, many modern approaches are more short-term and solution-focused. Therapists help couples set specific goals and work towards achieving them within a shorter timeframe. At Well Marriage, we are working to create unique intensives and retreats for couples to support this growing addition to traditional therapy. (More details soon!)
  8. Self-Reflection and Individual Growth: Couples therapy now often involves individual work, encouraging partners to reflect on their personal challenges and growth opportunities. Understanding one’s own needs and triggers can lead to improved communication and relationship dynamics.
  9. Inclusion of Neuroscience: Research in neuroscience has provided valuable insights into how the brain processes emotions and impacts relationship behaviors. Couples therapists now incorporate these findings to enhance their understanding of couple interactions.
  10. Focus on Prevention and Maintenance: Couples therapy is no longer seen solely as a last resort to save failing relationships. Many couples now seek therapy for preventive reasons, to enhance their communication and relationship satisfaction, to achieve long-term goals together, and to maintain a healthy partnership.
  11. Addressing Individual Disorders: The extension of couple‐based treatments to individual disorders, trauma, and prior baggage “reflects one of the most important developments of couple therapy in this century” (Fam Process.)

Couples Therapy and Marriage Counseling – It Works!

Research and analyses agree – modern couples therapy and marriage counseling work when it comes to reducing relationship distress (; ). Many techniques have been show to be effective, although most modern specialists pull from multiple techniques to cater a treatment plan that works: “cognitive‐behavioral couple therapy, integrative behavioral couple therapy, and emotionally focused couple therapy each have sufficient evidence to be considered specific well‐established treatments for relationship distress. Nonetheless, broadly, meta‐analyses show [these] therapies to have similar rates of impact” (

The average person receiving couples therapy is better off at the end of their therapy than 70%–80% of individuals not receiving treatment—an improvement rate that rivals or exceeds the most effective psychosocial and pharmacological interventions for individual mental health disorders.

A Look at the Research

  • A variety of couples therapy treatments have garnered evidence supporting their effectiveness for specific relationship problems including sexual difficulties () and infidelity (.)
  • When it comes to the success of modern couples therapy, especially when the therapist is trained to a specialist degree like ours at Well Marriage Center, evidence supports that modern couples therapy works: “In addition to reducing relationship difficulties, evidence from several clinical trials supports the beneficial impact of couple therapies for coexisting emotional, behavioral, and physical health concerns (; ; ; .) For example, there is evidence in support of couple‐based interventions for depression or anxiety (), posttraumatic stress (), and alcohol problems (.)
  • Couples therapy helps in situations of physical distress, as well: “couple‐based interventions for physical health problems comprise an expanding application—with evidence beginning to emerge supporting the benefits of couple therapy across a broad spectrum of conditions including couples in whom one partner has cancer, chronic pain, cardiovascular disease, anorexia nervosa, or type‐2 diabetes” (Fam Process, 2022.)

Overall, couples therapy has evolved to be more inclusive, evidence-based, collaborative, and sensitive to the unique needs and backgrounds of each couple. These changes have helped make couples therapy a valuable resource for couples seeking to strengthen their relationships and create lasting connections.

You can read more about marriage counseling statistics, our approach, or reach out today to see if our modern, strengths-based approach is a good fit for your relationship.


Couples Therapy & Marriage Counseling in Alexandria, VA

Building and maintaining a healthy relationship requires effort, communication, and sometimes, professional guidance. If you’re searching for couples therapy or marriage counseling in Alexandria, VA, look no further than Well Marriage Center. Our experienced therapists and evidence-based approaches can help you overcome challenges and strengthen your bond. Let’s explore the benefits of couples therapy, the cost of couples therapy, the importance of finding marriage counseling near you when you need it, and whether marriage counseling is exclusively for married couples.

Strengthen Your Relationship with Couples Therapy in Alexandria, VA: Introducing Well Marriage Center

Couples therapy is a valuable resource for individuals in all stages of their relationship, whether they are married, engaged, dating, or even considering separation. It offers a safe and supportive space where couples can address and work through various issues. As the nation’s largest couples specialty center, Well Marriage specializes in providing effective couples therapy to address a wide range of challenges, including:

  1. Communication problems: Miscommunication and lack of effective communication are common issues that can lead to misunderstandings, resentment, and conflicts. Couples therapy can help improve communication patterns and promote healthier dialogue.
  2. Conflict resolution: Every relationship experiences conflicts. Couples therapy equips partners with tools and strategies to resolve conflicts constructively, fostering understanding and compromise.
  3. Intimacy and connection: Over time, the spark and emotional connection may fade. Couples therapy can help rekindle intimacy, strengthen emotional bonds, and improve overall relationship satisfaction.
  4. Trust and infidelity: Rebuilding trust after an affair or addressing trust issues is a delicate process. Well Marriage Center’s therapists can guide couples through this challenging journey, helping them rebuild trust and create a more secure foundation.

The Cost of Couples Therapy

Many couples are concerned about the cost of couples therapy. However, investing in your relationship’s well-being is invaluable. While the cost can vary depending on factors such as location and therapist expertise, the benefits far outweigh the expense. Well Marriage Center understands the importance of accessible therapy and offers competitive pricing options. Additionally, many couples are able to work with their insurance companies for reimbursements, making our services more affordable and accessible to a wider range of couples.

Finding “Marriage Counseling Near Me”

When seeking couples therapy, proximity plays a crucial role. Well Marriage Center conveniently serves the Alexandria, VA area, making it an ideal choice for couples in search of marriage counseling near them. By selecting a nearby location, you can reduce travel time, easily attend sessions, and ensure consistency in your therapy process. Well Marriage Center’s office is easily accessible, providing a comfortable and welcoming environment for couples to navigate their relationship challenges.

Additionally, we found through the pandemic that virtual therapy is as effective as in-person, so we offer virtual services across the entire state of Virginia (as well as 7 other states.) Many couples begin their journey with in-person sessions and then move to virtual, or even hybrid therapy.

Do You Have to Be Married to Do Marriage Counseling?

Contrary to popular belief, couples therapy is not limited to married couples. Couples therapy is beneficial for any committed relationship, regardless of marital status. Whether you’re engaged, dating, or in a long-term partnership, couples therapy can help you strengthen your connection and work through your unique challenges. At Well Marriage Center, our therapists are experienced in working with couples at various stages of their relationships, tailoring their approach to meet your specific needs.

Beyond helping couples, however, we also help individuals. Anyone wanting to work on their attachments, their relationship with themselves, prior relationship trauma, and trust issues are welcome to work with us. We know having a great relationship with yourself is fundamental in having great relationships with others.

Why Choose Well Marriage?

Couples therapy can be transformative, providing couples with the tools, insights, and strategies to build and maintain a strong, fulfilling relationship. If you’re seeking couples therapy in Alexandria, VA, Well Marriage Center is your go-to destination. With our compassionate therapists, evidence-based approaches, 40 years of clinical experience, and commitment to your relationship’s success, we  can help you navigate the ups and downs of your journey together. Don’t hesitate to invest in your relationship’s future. Reach out to Well Marriage Center today and take the first step towards a healthier, happier partnership.

Marriage Counseling in Cary NC

Would it surprise you to learn that in 2022, over 75,000 marriages took place in North Carolina? That’s a lot of marriages, no two of which are exactly the same. Every relationship—especially one between two married folks—encounters its own speed bumps along the way.

Sometimes, couples can work through anything that life throws at them—and sometimes they think they can, but they really need a little guidance and support to get through the rougher patches.

If you’re in North Carolina searching for “marriage counseling near me,” or “best couples therapists” you’re not alone. The state’s divorce rate ranks 12th in the nation (though the rate itself—3.2 divorces per 1,000 residents—isn’t far off of the national median rate).

If there’s one factor that tends to separate the couples that make it through their roughest patches, it’s a commitment to improving their relationship communication, learning how to address conflict patterns, and committing to growing their trust and intimacy. By addressing their communication styles and these other dynamics, they can increase their levels of understanding and empathy with each other and rediscover the happiness in their marriage. And when we say “marriage counseling,” we also mean “couples therapy,” because we’re here to support all people in their relationships.

Here we answer a few of the most common questions we hear from North Carolinians who seek out marriage counseling in order to rediscover the spark in their relationship.

What Is the Success Rate of Marriage Counseling?

If you’re trying to determine whether marriage counseling is worth it, consider these statistics:

Obviously, there’s no such thing as a sure thing, but these figures should be encouraging. The wide range in estimated success rates underscores the importance of finding the right type of therapist for a couple’s needs.

As the fields of emotional development, trauma healing, brain science, attachment theory, and others continue to grow, so does the science of couples therapy.

What Type of Therapist Is Best for Marriage Counseling?

While no two therapists are identical, the best ones will…

  • Specialize in couples therapy and/or marriage counseling.
  • Apply evidence-based couples therapy models tailored to their clients’ specific needs. 
  • Take a strengths-based approach to counseling.
  • Have additional certifications in areas like infidelity, communication, trauma, sex, etc.

Why are these factors so vital? Let’s briefly explore each.

Specialization | While other types of therapists can certainly help individuals to better navigate issues within the relationship, the best results come from both parties working together. Therapists who specialize in couples therapy and/or marriage counseling will bring a finely-tuned skill set into the equation, increasing the chances of success.

An Evidence-Based Approach | Therapists who apply evidence-based couples therapy models leverage techniques based on scientific evidence and results—rather than, say, making it up as they go.

A Strengths-Based Approach | For a majority of couples, focusing on the positives is much more encouraging and constructive than dwelling on the negatives. By focusing on the positive aspects of the relationship first and working from there, couples can rediscover their spark, improve their communication patterns, and build toward a brighter shared future! The purpose of the strengths-based approach is to get the individuals in a relationship working as a team so the deeper issues can be addressed more efficiently.

How Much Does Marriage Counseling Cost in North Carolina?

While the price of counseling shouldn’t deter you from seeking help, it’s certainly a valid question. So, how much does marriage counseling cost? At Well Marriage CenterCounseling, our general rates for North Carolina residents are around $175-$195 per session. 

All too often, though, the assumed price point of marriage counseling deters couples from taking this important step in their relationship, so let’s consider these costs another way. Our clients often start with weekly one-on-one sessions, and then progress to every-other-week and then monthly sessions together, and spend a total of 5-10 months receiving our services.

That comes out to around $375 to $475 per month. Take the high end of that range and multiply it by 10 months of services, it comes out to less than $5,000. If that sounds like a lot, consider that in North Carolina, the average cost of a divorce is nearly $13,000. Divorce and separation have other costs as well, including emotional, family, and sometimes even work or friends. At Well Marriage, we think it’s worth the effort to improve relationships – we have seen the benefits in thousands of couples!

Additionally, we offer premarital or dating therapies in the hope that couples can build a relationship that is solid, happy, and set for long-term success. Starting your journey on the same page helps couples achieve their life goals together, manage conflict in healthy ways, and deepen intimacy over time.

How Much Is Couples Therapy with Insurance?

While couples therapy or marriage counseling are not typically covered by standard insurance plans, Well Marriage Center is considered to be an “out-of-network” provider. This is an important designation that means half or more of our clients are able to seek out at least partial reimbursement (anywhere from 25% to 95%).

You can learn more about what to expect by reading our Fees and Insurance FAQ or by contacting your insurance provider.

How Much Is Couples Therapy without Insurance?

Without insurance coverage, Well Marriage Center’sCounseling’s base rates—$175 to $195—apply. That being said, if you don’t have standard insurance but do work for an employer who offers an Employee Assistance Program (EAP), then couples therapy or marriage counseling may be covered. Also, if one partner has employer-provided insurance but the other doesn’t, you may be able to work with your therapist to bill the sessions under the covered individual’s benefits.

North Carolinians, There Is Hope!

At Well Marriage Center, our team of licensed professionals is ready to help. Whether you’re looking for standard marriage counseling options, individual therapy, or relationship wellness programs, start with Well Marriage Center. We provide marriage counseling and couples therapy in Cary, NC—as well as Charlotte, Wilmington, and several other states in the region. We also have a team of virtual therapists who are ready to work with you.

Take the first step today by either connecting with us through our Intake Coordinator, who will help you navigate the process of finding a therapist, or by using our online Therapist Calendar Form.



Marriage Counseling in Bethesda, MD

It’s no secret that Bethesda is one of the best places in the U.S. to call home. With a high education rate, below-average unemployment rates, low crime rates and a very high median income, it’s no wonder this suburb of Washington, D.C. regularly finds itself on various lists for best places to live. And since over half of its roughly 60,000 residents are married, Bethesda clearly is a great place for married couples to settle down.

What makes Bethesda a great place to live for married couples, specifically? It’s hard to definitively find one reason, but at Well Marriage Center, we’d like to believe a part of their success is because they have access to a lot of high-quality therapy. That’s right: therapy isn’t just for couples that are struggling! Therapy is something everyone should do—young or old, married or single, in Bethesda or anywhere. And when it comes to marriage counseling specifically, Well Marriage provides the best therapy for Bethesda, MD residents and beyond.

If you’re looking to improve relationship communication, strengthen your bond with your partner, resolve conflict, or simply become a better partner yourself, marriage counseling (or couples therapy!) is for you. And if you’re seeking marriage counseling in the Washington, D.C. area, Well Marriage is here. Read about how therapists help couples build their best marriages, and why couples counseling is worth it no matter what kind of relationship you have.

Finding a Therapist in Bethesda, MD

Truthfully, choosing a therapist is a lot like choosing a partner to date: you need to…

  • Know what you’re looking for in marriage counseling.
  • Find therapists who fit those criteria.
  • Have a session with those therapists to see how they work.

It’s important to note that while therapy is a scientific field, it’s also an emotional practice, so certification isn’t the only quality that makes a good fit. Of course, your ideal marriage therapist needs to be accredited. But a therapist also needs to be able to empathize with you and your partner, and work with you in a way that brings out the best in your marriage.

To dive deeper, let’s look at some commonly-asked questions about how to find a therapist:

What type of counselor is best for marriage?

While there are many types of counselors out there, there’s one thing you should always look for in a marriage counselor: certification. The state of Maryland recognizes two types of certification for marriage and family therapists (MFTs): Licensed Graduate Marriage and Family Therapist (LGMFT), and Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT). Both certifications require passing an exam, continued education, and thousands of hours of prior experience—much of which is supervised. 

When you work with a licensed MFT, you can be sure you’re getting someone who is highly qualified, very educated, and has a lot of experience with a wide range of couples. That’s exactly the kind of therapist you want to work with when improving your marriage, and those are the kinds of therapists we provide at Well Marriage!

What is the most effective type of couples therapy?

Ultimately, this is going to depend on the couple, but various techniques in couples counseling have proven effective. According to Psychology Today, emotionally focused therapy (EFT) is by far the most effective, with 90% of couples significantly improving their relationship and almost 75% no longer fitting the criteria for “relationship distress.” EFT centers emotions and emotional attachment as the core of a healthy relationship, and aims to help couples build emotional connection as well as understanding of their own individual emotions.

Again, though, just because something works “by the numbers” does not necessarily mean it’s the best solution for your marriage. Every relationship is different, and there are a variety of techniques that could prove just as effective—or even more effective—than EFT. The best couples counselors will be familiar with multiple techniques, including EFT, the Gottman Method, Imago Therapy, and many others. That’s exactly what our team at Well Marriage provides, and why we believe our therapists are the best therapists in the Bethesda metro area. In addition to understanding various therapy techniques, we take a strength-based approach to counseling, helping couples build off the great qualities they already share.

Should married couples see the same therapist?

It’s a good idea for them to do so! A therapist can—and often will—have sessions where both partners are present and with each individual partner. Many times, the struggles couples face together stem from interpersonal issues each person brings to the relationship. When a marriage therapist works with couples in both settings, they gain a better contextual understanding of the marriage and everything that plays into it.

Build the Marriage of Your Dreams With Us

Ready to see how wonderful your marriage or relationship can be? Do you live in the Bethesda, MD metro area? Reach out to us at the Well Marriage Center! We believe that no matter what struggles a couple may face, if they’re willing to work together, couples therapy can create a wonderful, fulfilling relationship that stands the test of time. Whether you want to improve communication, work through a difficult time, or simply make your marriage better, we can help you do that—and more. Every relationship can benefit from therapy, and with Well Marriage, those benefits could be better than you ever imagined.

If you’d like to learn more about how marriage therapy works, please reach out to our intake coordinator Melinda to schedule an appointment!



Marriage Counseling in Wilmington, NC

Wilmington, North Carolina is more than just a beautiful coastal city with picturesque scenery, charming historic districts, and delectable seafood. It’s also a place where couples build a life together, share their dreams, and create cherished memories. However, even in this lovely city, marriages, and all relationships, can have their challenges. 

At the Well Marriage Center in Wilmington, NC, we understand that navigating the ups and downs of a marriage can be rough. But rest assured that you’re not alone, as many couples in North Carolina face similar struggles. The state has higher-than-average divorce rates, but it’s encouraging to know that these rates have decreased over the past few decades.

If you’re thinking about rekindling your relationship with marriage and family counseling in Wilmington, NC, you may be wondering what to expect and where to start. In this blog, we’ll explore some common questions and concerns about marriage counseling and couples therapy, including crucial factors to consider when selecting a therapist. And don’t think counseling is only for struggling couples—it’s also a way to strengthen your bond and reignite your connection for long-term success!

How Do I Choose a Couple Therapist in Wilmington, NC?

Choosing the right couple therapist can take time, as you must consider the therapist’s credentials, approach, availability, and reviews. Here are some tips to help you make an informed decision:

  • Look for a licensed and experienced therapist

It’s essential to choose a therapist who is licensed and trained in providing couples therapy. For example, our Well Marriage Center therapists in Wilmington are all Licensed Clinical Social Workers (LCSWs). This designation guarantees that the therapist has met the necessary requirements to provide effective couples therapy, such as a minimum of 3,000 hours in supervised clinical employment. With all of this experience, LCSWs have a deep understanding of the social and emotional factors that impact relationships, making them well-equipped to help couples explore the complexities of their partnership. 

In addition to this, our therapists have training in other specific areas, like attachment theory, trauma, sex and intimacy, emotional development, conflict resolution, and more.

  • Consider the therapist’s approach

There are numerous approaches to couples therapy, and your ideal therapist will use techniques that resonate with you and your partner. What type of couples therapy is most effective? It truly depends on the circumstances of your marriage or relationship. Well Marriage Center therapists, for example, use a strengths-based therapeutic model that focuses on building and fortifying your relationship. Our goal is for couples to get better—and stay better—because their relationship is stronger and their connection is deeper. Science shows this approach works more effectively at getting couples to tackle problems as a team.

  • Evaluate the therapist’s availability

Marriage counseling is not very effective if you can’t regularly attend sessions, so make sure the therapist you choose can match your schedule and needs. You may also want to assess factors like location and accessibility. If you’re looking for Wilmington therapy services, you can stop by our Lumina Station location for in-person counseling or attend couples therapy online with one of our virtual therapists.

  • Check reviews and references

It’s crucial to hear experiences from previous clients to gauge the therapist’s effectiveness and professionalism. This context can give you an idea of the types of clients the therapist has helped in the past and what issues they specialize in. For example, Wilmington therapist Chae Kwak, LCSW, received this positive review:

“Chae was so understanding and fair. He listened and had exercises that helped us really understand each other. After that, we were able to work towards solutions instead of just blaming each other and fighting. Our issues were mainly around parenting styles and home/workload balance. Great therapist!”

If you and your partner also struggle with parenting styles and home/workload balance, then Chae might be an ideal fit for you two. Be sure to go through several reviews to get a sense of the therapist’s capabilities and approach.

How Long Should You Do Marriage Counseling For?

According to the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapy, counselors typically practice short-term therapy for marriage counseling, with an average of 12 sessions. Here are some additional statistics to keep in mind:

  • Therapists complete nearly 65.6% of cases within 20 sessions.
  • Therapists complete 87.9% of cases within 50 sessions.
  • Marital/couples therapy typically requires 11.5 sessions, and family therapy requires nine sessions, both requiring less time than the average individualized treatment of 13 sessions.

Remember, these are just averages, and your experience may be different depending on your relationship’s unique circumstances and goals. There’s no need to rush the process, and your therapist should work with you to customize a treatment plan that covers your specific needs and goals. 

How Much Does Marriage Counseling Cost in NC?

Therapists in North Carolina who do not take insurance charge, on average, between $175 to $195 per session. These prices will vary depending on the experience of the therapist, the location, and many other factors. However, you can still receive reimbursement for these services, even from therapists who are not “in-network” with health insurance companies.  

At Well Marriage Center, we understand that the cost of counseling can be a concern for many couples. That’s why we strive to ensure our services are accessible to everyone. Most of our clients who submit to their insurance company for reimbursement receive 25-90% of their fees back once they meet their out-of-network deductible. Additionally, our team is flexible with payment schedules to help you stay within your budget. We also accept Health Savings Account (HSA) cards, allowing you to invest your pre-tax dollars in your marriage.

Where to Find Marriage Counseling in Wilmington, NC

Building a strong and successful marriage requires dedication and effort, but you don’t have to do it alone. At the Well Marriage Center in Wilmington, NC, our expert therapists offer a strengths-based approach to assist couples in navigating the challenges of their relationship. From disagreements on parenting styles to difficulties communicating, we’ve helped both married and unmarried couples of all types through it all. Reach out to us today to start your journey toward a happier and more resilient relationship.




Marriage Counseling in Charlottesville, VA

Marriage counseling can be an intimidating thing to start, especially if you haven’t had any experience with therapy in the past. But setting aside time to strengthen your bond and improve your relationship communication, among other issues, is a positive step to take that doesn’t have to be scary. 

A good place to start is to look for a practice that specializes in relationships, marriage counseling, or couples therapy. Therapists with training and experience working with couples and families will be able to provide an empathetic, more effective path towards improving your relationship. At Well Marriage Center, all our counselors specialize in working with couples, so have extensive experience and use the latest training for the best results. 

For many couples, working with a therapist who is physically close by is another important aspect, especially since many practices aren’t licensed across state lines. For example, if you live near Charlottesville, Virginia, searching for “marriage counseling near me” or “best therapists in Charlottesville, VA” is obviously a useful place to start. 

What Is the Difference Between Couples Therapy and Marriage Counseling?

At Well Marriage Center, the terms “couples therapy” and “marriage counseling” are used interchangeably. Either term means that a couple is in a serious and committed relationship and they would like to strengthen their bond or work on resolving an issue. 

No matter what you call it, therapy for couples in a relationship is a dedicated time for partners to:

  • Improve communication, listening, and conflict management skills
  • Invigorate their relationship, trust, & intimacy
  • Interrupt unhealthy behavior patterns
  • Overcome relationship challenges
  • Heal past wounds

Some partners seek out counseling when issues arise in their relationship, like infidelity, an increase in disagreements, or a lack of connection. For others, therapy is a regular part of their relationship maintenance, and they use it as a time to deepen their connection and learn new ways of expressing themselves to each other. However you slice it, setting aside a specific time and energy to focus on one of your most important relationships will help you build a stronger connection to your partner, and therapy can be a useful tool in any relationship. 

What Does Couples Counseling Do?

Every marriage counseling practice will do things a little differently, but there are two modern elements that Well Marriage thinks are most important: strengths-based and marriage-friendly counseling.

Strengths-Based Counseling

In a strengths-based approach, your therapist will begin by asking you and your partner about the positive elements of your relationship and the strengths of your partner. Doing this focuses on what brought you together as a couple in the first place: the good times you have shared, the things you like, and what you respect about each other now. Focusing on (and building upon) these strengths can be a much better start to counseling than jumping straight into the current issues you may be facing. Research shows this approach strengthens a couple’s ability to face challenges as a team.

Marriage-Friendly Counseling

A marriage-friendly therapist (or pro-relationship therapist) will come to each session with the underlying assumption that your relationship can be a happy and fulfilling one. As long as both people are willing to put in the work to create or reinvigorate their relationship, Well Marriage Center believes couples will be successful in their goals. Many other counselors start from a marriage-neutral point, where they do not form an opinion on whether or not a couple should stay together. To us, this makes it harder to truly support the relationship during the delicate moments that can arise during sessions. Knowing your counselor is on the side of your relationship and wants it to succeed can make the process easier for everyone.

When You Think “Couples Therapy Near Me,” Think Well Marriage Center

Well Marriage Center has helped well over 15,000 couples improve their relationships and rekindle their romance. We offer marriage counseling in Virginia, Maryland, Washington DC, North and South Carolina, Florida, and California. If you prefer virtual counseling, that is available for those living in any of these states as well.

In addition to marriage counseling and couples therapy, we also offer dating or premarital counseling in Charlottesville, VA and at all our other locations. Our other services include individual support for relationship issues and family therapy. When you’re ready, getting started with us is an easy process. We love empowering couples to cultivate the bond they deserve!

Marriage Counseling & Couples Therapy in Short Pump, VA

Are you and your partner in Short Pump, VA and in need of a  relationship communication tune-up? What about other issues, like intimacy blocks or even conflict? If so, you might be searching for “marriage counseling near me” or “therapist Short Pump, VA” to find a counselor in your area. Fortunately, there’s a way to find the most suitable therapist for you and your significant other. Here, we explain how to begin your counseling journey and find a marriage or couples counselor that will help you both succeed in your relationship and cultivate the bond you deserve.

*We use the terms “marriage counseling” and “couples therapy” interchangeably, as the techniques and end goal of therapy is the same for all – to improve the relationship, repair loss of trust and intimacy, improve communication and conflict management, and to deepen the love and commitment between people.

What Type of Therapist Is Best for Marriage Counseling?

For most couples, the best therapist to provide marriage counseling and couples therapy will be accredited by the Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists (LMFT). In fact, while several private practices offer family and marriage counseling in different states, Virginia requires having an LMFT to practice couples therapy. This credential is especially important because LMFTs have a lot of experience working with couples and families. Their experience leads to a deep understanding of the unique problems and issues that can happen in these situations.

With the added certification from American Association for Marriage and Family Therapists (AAMFT), you can rest assured that your therapist has been evaluated by an experienced marriage counselor. This license includes many hours of training for completion, which is great for the married couples of Richmond. For example, in Virginia, one requirement to become licensed by the AAMFT is that training “must include a supervised practicum/internship, of at least 600 hours.”

We hire therapists who have dedicated their careers to improving relationships. Our therapists have additional training, such as working with trauma, affairs, emotional development, brain science, and lack of sex.

How Do I Find a Good Relationship Counselor Near Richmond, Virginia?

You and your partner should take plenty of time to find a relationship counselor who is a good fit for both of you. The right relationship counselor will be a good fit for both you and your partner to better serve the relationship as a whole. However, finding this can be difficult—especially if you and your partner aren’t in agreement over what makes a good fit. In addition, there is some difficulty in knowing where to look first. But if you follow these steps, you can find a counselor you can trust to help you work through your concerns:

  • Any recommendations? If you need help finding a relationship counselor, ask around—for example, you can seek help from family, friends, or coworkers you trust. A referral from your doctor or another reliable professional is another option.
  • What do the reviews say online? There are plenty of counselors accessible online. Check for customer feedback on their website or in search engine results.
  • Are they qualified? Verify that the counselor you are thinking of working with has the right qualifications. You can confirm their status by contacting the appropriate licensing body in your state.
  • What’s their specialization? It’s common for counselors to focus on helping certain types of families or couples. Find a therapist who specializes in addressing the issues you’re facing.
  • Can you set up a consultation? Many counselors offer a consultation to make sure they are the right fit for you and your partner. Ask the counselor any questions that you have and learn how they approach the issue you’re facing.

Why is finding the right counselor important? A qualified counselor can serve as an impartial third party if you and your partner are open to working on your relationship. That means you can both voice your concerns without worry of a one-sided conversation. It’s important you find a counselor that meshes well with you and your partner, because you won’t click with everyone—even if they are qualified. Finding a therapist you trust from the beginning will make the process go more efficiently.

Couples therapy can also shed light on whether or not your own personal behaviors are having an effect on your marriage. Ultimately, finding the right marital counselor is essential for couples who want to improve their relationship and make it last. 

With professional couples counseling in Richmond, VA, like ours at Well Marriage Center, you can ensure you and your partner are meeting with a qualified professional. Well Marriage therapists take a strengths-based approach to counseling, which means you can focus first on what works in your relationship rather than what doesn’t. By focusing on a couples strengths first, we build an environment of teamwork that helps you tackle the tougher issues together.

Our intake coordinator can answer questions you may have about the training of our therapists, or you can visit our website and read about our Richmond and Short Pump therapists.

Should Married Couples See the Same Therapist?

Yes! Often it’s best for a married couple to see the same counselor throughout their marriage counseling sessions. (Sometimes they meet individually too!) What are the advantages of seeing the same therapist?

  • Increase your sense of connection with your partner and stay motivated during treatment.
  • Focus on your individual issues while simultaneously improving your relationship together.
  • Improve your ability to communicate and resolve issues with one another.
  • Work together to find a solution, rather than blaming one another or getting defensive.
  • Create a deeper connection with each other by starting empathetic conversations. 
  • Having an objective third party that can manage tough conversations and see the entire dynamic.

Overall, going to the same marriage counselor is the most helpful action for couples who want to improve their relationship and work through problems together. It’s important to find a counselor in Richmond who works well with both partners and can make sessions safe and supportive. If you’re looking for the best couples counseling in Richmond, VA, consider connecting with the professionals at Well Marriage Center.

What Is the Success Rate of Marriage Counseling?

Currently, the success rate of counseling for couples is around 75% and climbing as modern therapeutic techniques are being adopted. However, marriage counseling is about the work you put in as a couple and, unfortunately, a little over one third of marriages end in divorce within 4 years. But the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists states that 90% of couples who go through couples therapy feel more emotionally secure afterward and are glad they went through the process. Because of this, 98% of couples say that counseling was a positive experience. All of this is great news for couples willing to take the next step in securing or improving their relationship for the long term! 

Flourish with Marriage Counseling in Richmond & Short Pump, VA 

At Well Marriage Center, we offer counseling services in Richmond, so you can work on improving your relationship with your partner. Get in touch with us to arrange a meeting with one of our licensed counselors. Together, we’ll figure out how to make your relationship stronger and more satisfying based on your individual wants and goals. Take the first step towards a happier, healthier marriage today by contacting our intake coordinator, Melinda!




Marriage Counseling in Charlotte, NC

Scenario: You and your loved one are sauntering down the streets of Charlotte, NC and you happen to spot that beautiful restaurant you’ve yet to go to — like Bernardin’s at Ratcliffe. As you walk past the entrance and its undeniable romantic ambience, the question you’ve pondered before lingers. Why haven’t you gone yet? Instead of vocalizing this query to your partner, you continue to walk past the eatery and wonder what could have been, and resent that you rarely speak up.

This is just a small example of a much bigger problem: according to HuffPost, relationship communication is the #1 top contender that many couples struggle to master and nearly always leads to separation. Far too many partnerships end simply due to failure to productively communicate with one another. If you feel communicating with your partner is met with resistance, take a moment to read about the couples counseling Charlotte, NC has to offer, like ours at Well Marriage. 

Whatever reason you’re now searching for “Marriage counseling near me,” know there is hope! When two people are both willing to put in the work with a skilled relationship therapist, success rates are very high!  So even though divorce rates in Charlotte are among the highest in the country, we’re here to offer a better solution – and not only for communication issues, because our strengths-based model of therapy is built to help all relationship problems. We offer data-backed, modern therapy that helps with things like loss of love, trust, intimacy, and sex, as well as conflict management, individual support, and working through past traumas.

Now, let’s walk along the path to patching up your partnership!

How Successful Is Couples Therapy in Charlotte?

The success that comes from couples therapy understandably depends on you and your partner’s willingness and dedication to restoring the relationship. According to Psychology Today, couples therapy became 75% effective by 2017 and continues to climb.

There are often cases where a couple will refuse to address the issues in their partnership until things have fallen apart in a way that seems far too challenging to build back up without guidance. In any case, Well Marriage understands the resistance that comes with speaking up, so it’s important not to lose hope even if you feel it may be too late. Our therapists are experts at working with tough relationship issues.

What Is The Difference Between Couples Therapy and Marriage Counseling?

Marital status is the only difference between marriage counseling and couples therapy, but nearly all other factors are identical. The primary goal of marriage counseling is to improve the overall relationship between married partners. 

Couples therapy, on the other hand, is a bit broader as it could easily include married and unmarried couples hoping to mend rough patches in their partnership or overcome longstanding issues. Identifying the sources of conflict in specific areas of a couple’s relationship and working toward solutions is the main goal for couples therapy. 

However, the two practices both aim to fix similar relationship-driven predicaments. This process often includes:

  • Addressing the conflict(s) and issues
  • Improving overall communication
  • Enhancing intimacy (both physically and emotionally)
  • Increasing the satisfaction of everyone in the relationship
  • Strengthening the bond

Having the ability to develop relationship habits that are healthier and more sustainable between you and your partner does not always come naturally. Marriage counseling and couples therapy is a great way to get started and it’s incredibly valuable, but often overlooked until things get extremely rocky. However, even when couples feel it may be too late, our therapists have focused their careers on relationship issues and can help anyone willing to put in the work deep therapy requires. 

We often refer to our work as “relational therapy” because our model helps married, unmarried, and non-traditional couples as well as families and individuals wanting to work through any issues around relationships that they may experience. 

Strengths-Based Couples Counseling

Well Marriage works to serve couples regardless of their legal relationship status with the help of strengths-based counseling. Strengths-based marriage counseling is a strategy used to pinpoint and highlight the strengths in a couple’s partnership, and we don’t suggest separation unless that is what both parties want. We aim to get individuals working as a team before we tackle the tough stuff.

Oftentimes in couples therapy, relationship specialists might start things off with the timeworn question—what seems to be the problem? Starting off your partnership rehabilitation process by laying out everything that isn’t working can cause tensions to rise, making it difficult to see that light at the end of the tunnel.

When you begin your journey to a mended romance, it might be worth it to focus on the things that are going right before you dive deeper into the things that are going left. We often start by asking things like, “what made you fall in love in the first place?”

How Much Does Therapy Cost Near Charlotte NC?

The cost of counseling in Charlotte NC can range anywhere between $200 and $500 monthly depending on the number and frequency of sessions, the issues being addressed, and the presence of insurance. Many couples find this an affordable alternative to the very real emotional and financial costs of separation – and we agree! Investing in your relationship has cascading benefits.

So, remember not to let costs deter you from worthy marriage or couples counseling! Consider these benefits when you give it a fair shot:

  • Resentment and conflict resolution
  • Removal of relationship doubts, blame, and defensiveness
  • Regained trust and intimacy with your partner
  • Fewer communication issues and healthier communication habits
  • Renewed and deeper commitment
  • Complete avoidance of separation or divorce and costs 

For information on fees and insurance reimbursements for therapy provided by Well Marriage, go here! We’re also happy to answer questions during our intake process.

How To Get Couples Therapy Covered By Insurance

We work hard at Well Marriage to make sure our out of pocket costs are in line with others in the area and accessible to clients. For those wanting or needing their sessions covered by insurance, it’s often a case-by-case situation; here’s a list of ways you could qualify:

  • Out-of-network reimbursement allows you to use private insurance.
  • Insurance companies often require a mental health diagnosis such as anxiety, depression, PTSD
  • Occasionally, couples therapy falls under family therapy. If your insurance provider offers family therapy, they could also offer couples therapy.

Bottom line, you should check with your insurance provider as well as the couples therapist you’re planning to work with for confirmation on what can and can’t be accepted. 

Is Marriage Counseling Covered By Insurance? Similar to insurance for couples therapy, the answer is both yes and no depending on whether or not you have private insurance to cover some of the costs of marriage counseling.

Regardless of cost or insurance coverage, it’s crucial to go with someone who is specifically trained and licensed in marriage or couples counseling. The more experience a therapist has in relational issues, the better they can help you!

What Is The Best Kind of Marriage Counselor?

Aside from having a license and the right experience, the best kind of marriage counselor is one that you and your life partner can both connect with positively. Experience and relevant training is still the number one factor, however, as our therapists will pull techniques from many methods to create a custom approach for your unique relationship needs. That’s why Well Marriage Center offers counseling from licensed specialists in a variety of locations. It’s time to mend the cracks in the road to relationship recovery. Get started on your path to a healthier relationship today!