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Emotionally Focused Couples Paper

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When people get married they look forward to having a marriage full of love, happiness, companionship, financial stability, intimacy, and having someone who will provide emotional support. But for some people that happiness goes out the door, when you married someone who has an unstable background it will cause problems. This is where couples therapy comes into play, it gives the couple a way to express their concerns about what is going on in their lives. This paper will focus on a video that is providing couples with therapy, and helping them to come to some kind of conclusion of what the clients need to do to become closer.

Emotionally Focused Couples Emotionally focused therapy is known as (EFT), it is a forum of therapy that is a structured psychotherapy that works with individuals, couples, and families. This forum of therapy focuses on a person’s inner emotional state and unwanted experiences that a person in. There is a video called Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy, which is based on a couple Patty and Josh, who has been married for about a year now, Patty has been married before and that marriage was one that was full of a lot pain and ended in a divorce. Even though Patty is now married again she has found herself reliving those ole emotions from her past marriage, which is now causing problems in her marriage with Josh. Patty finds herself shutting down every time her and Josh get into an argument and this is causing Josh to feel unwanted, alone, and begin pushed out the relationship but Patty. Many married people in America go through problems and they have to seek out help to find the source of the problem.

Most of the time it’s emotional and people do not know how to deal with the issues. According to (Johnson & Greensburg, 1998), Emotions provides an important basis for human behavior. Emotions amplify the effects of motives on behavior; they orient us towards/away from objects in our environment; they constitute a connection between us and our environment. Emotions are not self-centered nor are they independent of others. Emotions helps us to feel and when those emotions are off track it can affect us in many ways, that will cause us to shut down on how we are really feeling. In the video, Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy, in the video there a lot of body language happening by both the therapist and the couple involved in the session. It also shows how therapist and the couple is reacting to the questioning and answering the questions. Susan Johnson; which is the therapist performing the sessions, she shows the couple that she is interested in their problems and that she is really there for them.

The therapist shows the couple her feelings through the way she is questioning, and responding to the couple and through her body language and how she is reflecting the couples feeling back towards them. In the video you also see that the couple is listening to each other and expressing their feelings with the support of the therapist. The couple realizes how much they want to work things out with one another and they are willing to work on their relationship to make it better. The process of information – giving is very important, because it allows for the interviewer to give clients the necessary information that would help them to achieve a pacific goal. In the video, Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy, Information-giving responses gives the interviewer a chance to give information out information based on the client’s needs.

Information-giving according to (Lipthrott, LCWS (2013), Information-giving is giving to couples, to teach them tools to help make the unconscious aspects of their relationship conscious and to help couples address conflict at its roots rather than just trying to solve it in a surface way, and to be successful on working to heal and grow to create an emotional safety net of support of both parties involved and to them learn how to better meet each other needs by transforming conflict into opportunities for a deeper intimacy and connection. The process of information-giving is good way to get the clients to understand the process that they are going through and what they can expect from the process. The nonverbal and verbal skills of the therapist were great, in the video, Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy, you see the therapist using her communications skills and body language to show the client that she is interested in what they have to say.

The therapist shows the couple that she interested by touching the clients legs, and showing face expressions that shows the couples that she wants to help them find a common ground to figure out their problems. The therapist also uses words that can help the couple to respond to her without saying “yes/no” to her questioning. The therapist showed a warm and expressive tone, she followed the couple response to her questions, and she did not interrupt the couple when they were responding her questioning. The therapist also made good eye contact when she was asking the couple questions, the eye contact and the body language she used showed the couple that she was being natural, relaxed and attentive to understand what the couple was saying to her.

There were certain questions the therapist asked did make Patty cry, when questions came up about her previous relationship and the relationship with her father who was an alcoholic. When the therapist questioned the husband, he felt that his wife was pushing him out the relationship by shutting down and not wanted to talk about her issues with him. The questioning was very effect and it helped Patty to see that her husband Josh wanted to her with the pain that she was going through and even though it might take some time for her to let him the way that he wants her she is willing to do that for him. When questioning the couple the therapist used open and ended questions like: 1. Yeah, I hear you. What does it look like when you shut down, I mean, do you just not talk or do you leave the room or do you turn away. 2. You just turn in, this is too difficult, and this is too hard, yeah? 3. Some parts of you say, this too scary, I’m too vulnerable here, I have to go and hide away and lock the door. 4. What is it like to hear your lady talking about this, Josh? 5. You want to take care of her in that way?

6. Somehow, I want too slow you down a bit? Okay.
7. So you start thinking about all the things that somehow that you might have done to trigger this hurt, right? These questions helped to open the conversation, and to help the therapist understand a little better of what was going on with the couple. The ended questions also helped the therapist to focus on what she should ask the couple next that would help them to reply without saying “yes/no” to the questions that she asked. To help the therapist understand what was being said to her, she used the techniques of paraphrasing and summarizing. The therapist restated back to the couple of what they had said in order for her to understand both of the couple’s answers. The therapist did not change what the couple has stated to her, it helped her to open with questions that helped the couple to focus on their own thoughts, and it kept the interview process in one direction which was to focus on the emotional, trust, and communication issues that the couple was having in their marriage.

The therapist used summarization, by restating the most important parts of the interview. The therapist also provided accurate, and timely overviews to help the couple think about their thoughts, and then she would come back to the previous questions to show the couple how they were thinking and why they were thinking in this way. When the therapist used paraphrasing and summarizing it helped to provide the interview with direction and it helped to keep the interview organized. The techniques of paraphrasing and summarizing were very good to use in the interview, because it gave the therapist an insight of what was going on the lives of the couple and it helped her to understand why both of the couple was feeling the way that they was. The techniques also provided the therapist a way of getting deeper into the minds of the couple and when she that it open a door that help Patty to understand why she was treating her husband Josh the way that was doing and if she kept up it was going to push her husband Josh away, which was something that she did not want to happen.

During the information-giving process of the interview the therapist gave the couple advice on how they should be relating to each other and how they need to stop shutting down, because it is only causing more problems to the problems they already have. The therapist gave her perspective on what might be casing Patty to shut her husband out, and how she can involve her husband in helping her to heal. The therapist also made sure that Patty understood when she told her that “now she has a man here who wants to love her, hold her, and take care of her, and that he is inviting her into his world without the conflict and issues”. After giving the couple feedback the therapist made sure to tell the couple to continue to see their current therapist Keith Edwards. The therapist used exploration, clarification, and the action stages in the interview.

In the exploration stage, it was at the beginning of the interview, when the therapist made the couple feel welcome and thanking them for letting her interview them and to hear their story, and how she open up the interview to help the couple feel comfortable with her. The clarification stage is when the therapist focused on Patty who was having emotional, and trust issues and on Josh who was shutting down mentally and feeling unwanted by being shut-out and not having a purpose in their marriage. The therapist helped Patty to realize that there’s nothing wrong with finding a man who offers you what you’ve been always longed for which is closeness and that it was okay to learn how to trust someone. The action stage is when the therapist told the couple patty and Josh that they needed to take little steps, but it would get easier and better for them, and that they needed to continue to work on their marriage by seeing their current therapist. When using reflecting feelings in a greater detail. Examples of reflecting feeling can be:

1. Joyful Feelings
2. Positive Feelings
3. Active Feelings
4. Angry Feelings

The therapist helped the couple to self-disclosed, because it helped the couple to understand their own feelings. Self-disclosed is good to use when you are relating to a client, but when you give out to much information it will turn the interview process on the interviewer. The therapist helped the couple to reflect on their feelings before they respond to each other. The therapist showed the couple how they can continue with their current therapist to get the help that they need. I believe that this interview was very successful, it provided the couple with helpful insights on why they were thinking and acting the way they were. The therapist made sure the couple was comfortable with the settings they were in. There should be nothing changed about this video, because it shows beginner therapist and seasonal therapist how they should conduct a EFT interview.


Evans, D. R., Hearn, M. T., Uhlemann, M. R., & Ivey, A. E. (2011). Essential Interviewing: A Programmed Approach to Effective Communication (8th ed.). Belmont, CA: Brooks/Cole. Floyd, K. (2011). Interpersonal Communication (2nd
ed.). New York, NY: McGraw Hill. Greensberg, L. S., & Johnson, S. M. (1988). Emotionally Focused Therapy for Couples. New York, NY: The Guilford Publication, Inc. Lipthrott, LCSW, D. J. (2013). What is IMAGO Relationship Therapy, Anyway? Retrieved from http://www.relationshipjourney.com/imagotherapy University of Phoenix (2009). Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy [Video podcast]. Retrieved from http://www.ecampus.phoenix.edu

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