2nd Edition

Couples Therapy

ISBN 9780789014542
Published August 1, 2001 by Routledge
468 Pages

USD $64.95

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Book Description

Harness the power of an integrative approach to couples counseling!

Why do marriages fail? The behaviorist or cognitive therapist explains that unhappy couples have self-defeating ways of thinking about their spouses and themselves. The sociologically oriented counselor points to the impact of social trends and dramatic changes in child-rearing and social expectations. A therapist oriented toward psychodynamics or systems theory sees the destructive patterns of childhood replayed in the marriage, with spouses taking on rigid roles. The pastoral or humanist counselor believes that partners who cannot experience self-fulfillment through commitment and trust will feel less love and grow more and more disconnected. Couples Therapy, Second Edition, brings together all these points of view to make a unified whole.

This integrative approach proposes a new model of successful marriage based on four cornerstones: resiliency, social support, adaptability, and self-fulfillment. Weaving together theory and research, Couples Therapy, Second Edition, explores how common issues can lead to trouble in relationships. It suggests specific interventions so therapists can teach clients to deal with such problem areas as anger management, domestic violence, depression, anxiety, parenting conflicts, in-laws, work pressures, and sexual dissatisfaction.

Couples Therapy, Second Edition, offers a sound theoretical framework as well as practical ideas. Through clinical vignettes and up-to-date research, it makes the common conflicts and developmental stages of marriage so understandable that it can be profitably read by clients as well as counselors. Its invaluable resources for the couples therapist include:

  • end-of-chapter professional development questions
  • therapeutic exercises
  • answers to frequently asked professional and ethical questions
  • intervention suggestions for the therapist
  • self-assessment questionnaires
  • book and video recommendations on each chapter topic
Written in clear, readable prose, Couples Therapy, Second Edition, offers practical help for the experienced clinician as well as theoretical overviews for the counselor in training.

Table of Contents


  • Introduction
  • The Organization of the Book
  • Learning aids Used in Each Chapter
  • Which Clients Will benefit from the Information in This Book?
  • Part I. The Resiliency Cornerstone: Creating an Optimistic Philosophy of Life
  • Theoretical Orientation: Cognitive-Behavioral
  • Rational Emotive Psychotherapy
  • Restructuring and Reframing Marital Perceptions
  • Metaphors
  • The Marriage Tax
  • Choose an Identity: Be a Duck or a Sponge
  • The Art of a Successful Marriage
  • Chapter 1. Anger and the Couple Relationship
  • The Heads and Tails of Couple anger: Self-Imposed and Retaliatory Anger
  • Self-Imposed Anger
  • Retaliatory Anger
  • The Three Worst Ways to Respond to Spousal Aggravation
  • Positive Ways to Respond to Spousal Anger
  • Types of Arguments Between Couples
  • Anger and Violence
  • Learning Aids
  • Chapter 2. Depression and the Couple Relationship
  • Marital Distress Provokes and Maintains Depression
  • What Causes Depression?
  • Common Personality Traits and Depression Marriage
  • External Stress and Depression in Marital Relationships
  • Coping Styles and Depression in Marriage
  • The Protective Nature of Social Support
  • Characteristics of Marriages with a Depressed Partner
  • Effectiveness of Marital Therapy in Treating Depression
  • Enlisting the Aid of a Resourceful Spouse
  • Learning Aids
  • Chapter 3. Anxiety and the Couple Relationship
  • Anxiety: What Are the Symptoms?
  • The Existential Meaning of Anxiety
  • Couple Anxiety and the Use of Defense Mechanisms
  • Provokers of Anxiety in Marriage
  • Loneliness
  • Maladaptive Responses to Anxiety: Alcohol Use, Anxiety, and the Marital Relationship
  • Characteristics of the Anxiety-Reducing Spouse
  • Learning Aids
  • Part II. The Social Support Cornerstone: Creating Family and Community Roles That Enhance the Partner Relationship
  • Theoretical Orientation: Sociocognitive
  • The Cultural Influence of Work on Marital Relationships
  • The Cultural Changes in Parenting and Their Effect on Family Life
  • Cultural and Religious Diversity and Its Effect on In-Law Relationships
  • Cultural Conflicts and the Wedding Ceremony
  • Coping Strategies Characteristic of Intercultural In-Law Relationships
  • The Phenomenon of Cultural Confusion
  • Chapter 4. Parenting and the Couple Relationship
  • The Task of Parenting
  • The Bidirectional Approach: How Children Influence Parents
  • Influence of Family Dynamics on Marital Relationships
  • Developmental Tasks for Couples During the Family Life Span
  • Learning Aids
  • Chapter 5. Effects of Housework and Employment on Couple Relationships
  • Housework and the Couple Relationship
  • Employment and Its Effects on the Couple Relationship
  • Major Types of Spillover
  • Methods of Coping: Home-Based Work
  • Learning Aids
  • Chapter 6. In-Laws and the Couple Relationship
  • In-Law Combinations
  • Factors Affecting In-Law Relationships
  • Learning Aids
  • Part III. The Adaptability Cornerstone: From Adaptability to Rigidity--Reducing Conflict with Effective Communication
  • Theoretical Orientation: Family Systems and Psychodynamics
  • Psychodynamic Theories
  • Systems Theories and Couple Communication
  • Chapter 7. Communication
  • What Do Couples Communicate About?
  • Communication Problems
  • Methods for Improving Marital Communication
  • Learning Aids
  • Part IV. The Self-Fulfillment Cornerstone: Creating a Spiritual Connection
  • Theoretical Orientation: Humanistic and Theological
  • Self-Fulfillment Through Commitment and Trust
  • Organized Religion, Spirituality, and Marriage
  • Eastern Religions, Personal Fulfillment, and Marital Fulfillment
  • Judeo-Christian Religious Traditions, Personal Fulfillment, and Marital Satisfactions
  • Personality Theories, Personal Fulfillment, and Marital Satisfactions
  • Chapter 8. Sexuality and th

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