How does online couples therapy work?
Online couples therapy uses the same methods as face-to-face couples therapy. The main difference being that you are sitting with your partner(s) in front of a computer and webcam, seeing the therapist through a screen. It is preferable that the couple sits in front of the same webcam, to keep your interaction more natural. If preferred or if you are in a long-distance relationship, you can of course log in from two different devices.
In addition, you’ll need access to either a tablet to visualise worksheets that I’ll send you or a printer to print them out. If possible, it is helpful that you have access to a smartphone or tablet to be able to download the Gottman Cards Deck app (free of charge), which we might use during therapy.
What distinguishes couples therapy from couples counseling?
Both terms are not regulated by the German state and are therefore interpreted and used differently by different people. (Due to the lack of legal regulation, anyone in Germany can call themselves a couples counselor or couples therapist; so please make sure to check their qualifications thoroughly).
My personal understanding is that couples counseling works on a specific, narrowly defined relationship issue for a relatively short period of time, while couples therapy describes a longer-term process in which the partners work on their inner experiences, thoughts, feelings, behaviours, and underlying patterns that condition them. Couples therapy is thus more comprehensive and in-depth than couples counseling.
As a psychotherapist, my focus and interest lies mainly in couples therapy.
Is the assessment phase at the beginning really necessary?
Yes, the assessment phase, consisting of a joint couples session, one individual session for each partner, and a joint feedback/therapy planning session, is an integral part of Gottman Method Couples Therapy (GMCT), because a sound assessment allows for much better adjusted interventions later on. In other words, we will first establish firmly what are our relationship’s strengths and weaknesses – as well as what are your goals -, before trying to elicit any changes.
Do you also provide face to face sessions?
No, I only work online.
Do you only provide couples therapy or also individual sessions?
I also take on individual clients for mindfulness-based or hypnotherapeutic approaches. However, I do not provide individual or group psychotherapy.
Please note my services' terms and conditions
- All therapy sessions are provided online via Zoom.
- All therapy sessions are videorecorded and saved on a secured external disk. Videos are deleted after a maximum of 2 years. Of course, you can ask for an earlier deletion. Reasons for videorecording are: (1) videos may be used in later therapy sessions for video feedback (e.g., to show improvements) as part of the Gottman therapy programme. (2) I am in training to become a Certified Gottman Therapist and in this role I share short video clippings (e.g., 5min) with my consultant who rates my performance. The external consultation is meant to improve my services. The consultant will never rate clients’ behaviour. I will ask for your written consent allowing me to share the video content with my consultant using secure technology. The recordings are deleted as soon as they have fulfilled their purpose.
- Please show up on time for the therapy sessions. It may help that you log in to our call a couple of minutes before our scheduled time. I will let you in at the scheduled time. I will wait a maximum of 5min after the scheduled time. In isolated cases, I can wait up to 10min, if you give me prior notice. No shows are fully charged.
- Cancelling sessions with 48h notice is free of charge. If you cancel sessions between 48h and 24h, I charge 50% of the fees. Cancelled sessions within 24h of the beginning will be fully charged.
Please contact me if you have other questions. 🙂