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Our Services

Our therapists provide In-person, Phone and Video Psychotherapy and Social Work Services.

Need help booking your appointment?

Contact us at 905-321-0550.

Discernment Counselling

An alternative to traditional therapy for couples at a crossroads

Offered in person and online in Niagara Falls, Ontario

Should you stay or should you go?

Are you and your partner facing the challenging decision of whether to continue or end your relationship? 

Maybe one of you is ready to do whatever it takes to improve the relationship, while the other feels less confident that things can work out.

Perhaps your relationship is on the brink, but you're not ready to call it quits. You're not sure what to do, and one or both of you needs some time to really talk through the issues with no pressure, no deadline, and no agenda.

Discernment Counseling offers a unique approach to navigating this critical crossroads. As a psychotherapist with expertise in couples therapy, I am pleased to introduce you to this specialized form of counseling.

Unlike traditional couples counselling, where each partner is ready to work on improving the relationship, Discernment Counselling is a brief, focused therapy designed for couples who are on the brink of a breakup but are unsure about the best path forward. It acknowledges the complexity of this decision and aims to provide a safe and supportive environment for both partners to explore their feelings and thoughts about their relationship.

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How does Discernment Counselling Work?

Individual Exploration

Partners are given a dedicated space to openly express their feelings and concerns about the relationship's future.

Understanding Patterns

Together, we uncover interaction patterns that have contributed to the current state of the relationship.

Exploring Options

Partners discuss possible paths forward, including reconciliation, separation, or divorce, to make informed decisions aligned with their values.

1.

2.

3.

The goal of Discernment Counselling is not to persuade couples to stay together or separate. Instead, the goal is to help you make a decision about which path you will take. 

In a balanced and empathetic space, partners are empowered to engage in a comprehensive exploration of their emotions, thoughts, and needs, ensuring that their decisions are not only informed but also aligned with their deeply held values.

Discernment Counselling respects individual choices, recognizes the complexity of relationship crossroads, and aims to foster a collaborative atmosphere that honors each partner's perspective, ultimately promoting a more constructive and authentic decision-making process.

By the end of Discernment Counselling, you'll 

The Discernment Counselling Process

Instead, in a balanced and empathetic space, partners are empowered to engage in a comprehensive exploration of their emotions, thoughts, and needs, ensuring that their decisions are not only informed but also aligned with their deeply held values.

Discernment Counselling respects individual choices, recognizes the complexity of relationship crossroads, and aims to foster a collaborative atmosphere that honors each partner's perspective, ultimately promoting a more constructive and authentic decision-making process.

Instead, in a balanced and empathetic space, partners are empowered to engage in a comprehensive exploration of their emotions, thoughts, and needs, ensuring that their decisions are not only informed but also aligned with their deeply held values.

Discernment Counselling respects individual choices, recognizes the complexity of relationship crossroads, and aims to foster a collaborative atmosphere that honors each partner's perspective, ultimately promoting a more constructive and authentic decision-making process.

Is Discernment Counselling For You?

Many couples benefit from a traditional counselling approach (60-minute sessions booked weekly or bi-weekly), but there are times when a couple needs to see positive change as quickly as possible or needs time to work through issues more thoroughly in one session. 

 

In the traditional counselling approach, couples will usually attend a few sessions before noticeable changes occur in their relationship - for those in crisis or eager to see change quickly this can mean a number of weeks of ongoing distress, which can seem hopeless and overwhelming.

 

For couples who are feeling stuck, in distress or who are looking for meaningful change quickly without attending multiple sessions, our couples' intensives can help you get to the heart of the matter quickly, discover where you're getting stuck and learning how to work with each other to improve the relationship. 

 

With our couples' therapy intensive, in just two sessions, we'll help you to learn and practice ways to rebuild trust, intimacy and connection, to see, hear and understand your partner better more seen so you can tackle any relationship challenge.

There are times where fixing your relationship can’t wait. You can find trust & connection with couples intensive therapy in Niagara Falls, ON. Book a free consultation today!

Your Couples' Therapy Intensive Includes:
  • A thoughtful pre-intensive process that includes a questionnaire and a free 30-minute phone or video consultation to determine whether a Couples' Therapy Intensive is right for you.

  • Access for each partner to The Gottman Relationship Checkup, a powerful online assessment tool designed to highlight your relationship's strengths and areas for growth to help you succeed - including the 2 hours of devoted time your therapist spends scoring, analyzing and interpreting the results

  • Access for each partner to The Enneagram Personality Test, providing you with helpful insights into each other's thoughts, feelings, and behaviors along with practical ways to bring out each other's best qualities in any situation.

  • Two days of 4-hour meetings, with a combination of counselling, hands-on exercises and trying out practical ways to improve communication, resolve conflicts and increase a sense of trust, intimacy and connection.

  • In-session assessment and interventions based on Relational Life Therapy, the, Gottman Method, and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy.

  • A personalized road map that helps you build on the progress made during your couple’s therapy intensive. 

Curious about what a couples intensive looks like?​

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Three Steps To Lasting Change

I

Assess

Get clear about what the problem is. It's not you, or your partner. The problem is the relationship is stuck.

II

Learn 

Discover tools and strategies that help you to work as a team and get your relationship back on track.

III

Act

Navigate through old problem areas with new insights and skills that create a secure, solid and satisfying relationship.

Frequently Asked Questions

How is an intensive different from

couples therapy?

Couples intensives replace eight weeks of traditional couples therapy and dedicate two days within one week to quickly identify one or two major barriers in your relationship and start working right away to overcome that particular issue or unhelpful patterns. Intensives have the capability to quickly promote healing, growth and create life-changing moments of understanding and connection.

Is a couples therapy intensive right for us?

Couples who benefit from an intensive typically have the following in common:

  • Both partners are highly motivated to work on their relationship.

  • Each partner is open to feedback and willing to try new skills to improve their relationship.

  • Couples are able to carve out two four-hour meetings within one week to solely focus on their relationship.

What is the fee for a couples intensive?

The fee for the couples intensive is $2,000 +HST, based on ten hours at @ $200 per hour. This includes administering and reviewing your Gottman Relationship Assessment, two 4-hour meetings, and a 1-hour follow-up meeting.

Some or all of the fees may be covered by your employee benefit plan.

If you'd like to be reimbursed through your benefit plan, check with your provider to confirm the amount of your coverage before booking your couples intensive.

Can I claim these fees through my employee benefits?

A 30-Second Relationship Check-up

Reading on Bed

On a scale of 1 to 10, how would you and your partner rate your current level of relationship satisfaction in each of following areas? 

Holding Hands

Respect for each other 

Support and empathy

Communication and sharing

Mutual trust and honesty

Enjoying time together

Fairness and equality

Connection and intimacy

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If you scored 8 or higher in all of these areas, your relationship is in great shape.

 

A score of 6 or less in any area indicates that an unmet need requires attention.

Have Questions?

Dee, our Client Care Manager, is available to help you get started

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Investing time, energy and finances in your relationship is a big commitment.

We're here to answer your questions about the couple's therapy intensive. 


You can contact our office by phone, text or email.

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Love is a constant process of tuning in, connecting, missing and misreading cues, disconnecting, repairing, and finding deeper connection. It is a dance of meeting and parting and finding each other again. Minute to minute and day to day.

DR. SUE JOHNSON

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