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The Couples Therapist Couch

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The Couples Therapist Couch is a podcast by licensed marriage and family therapist, Shane Birkel. The show provides education, support, and connection for Couples Therapists, Marriage Counselors, and Relationship Coaches. Each week Shane interviews an expert in the field of Couples Therapy to explore all about the world of relationships and how to be an amazing therapist.

The Couples Therapist Couch is a podcast by licensed marriage and family therapist, Shane Birkel. The show provides education, support, and connection for Couples Therapists, Marriage Counselors, and Relationship Coaches. Each week Shane interviews an expert in the field of Couples Therapy to explore all about the world of relationships and how to be an amazing therapist.
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The Couples Therapist Couch is a podcast by licensed marriage and family therapist, Shane Birkel. The show provides education, support, and connection for Couples Therapists, Marriage Counselors, and Relationship Coaches. Each week Shane interviews an expert in the field of Couples Therapy to explore all about the world of relationships and how to be an amazing therapist.




098: Neurodiverse Couples with Grace Myhill

When one or both couples are on the Autism Spectrum or label themselves as Aspergers, it can be incredibly helpful to be understanding of particular things that will be helpful for working with these specific couples. In this episode, Grace Myhill talks about particular topics that neurodiverse couples often seek help with. Here is a paragraph from her website: A couple is neurodiverse when one partner is neurotypical — processes information the way most people do — and the other partner...


097: Female Desire with Lisa Taddeo

In the history of our society there has been a huge amount of shame for women about their own desires. There is still a pervasive problem of not talking about what is going on and what people really want. Because no one is talking about it, no one feels accepted or validated about their desire. Author, Lisa Taddeo, breaks this silence in her book Three Women. Lisa is a #1 New York Times bestselling author and journalist and two-time recipient of the Pushcart Prize for her short stories. She...


096: Elliott Connie on Solution Focused Brief Therapy

In this episode about Solution Focused Brief Therapy, Elliot Connie talks about some amazing strategies to help couples achieve great results in their relationships. He goes into details about how much of psychotherapy is all wrong, asking the right questions, and letting the client take the lead. He describes how asking people what they want in a skillful way and staying with it, requires them to move into deeper levels of vulnerability. Elliott Connie is a therapist, author, speaker, and...


095: How to Be a Functional Adult with Jan Bergstrom

In this episode with Jan Bergstrom, we go into depth about the 5 Core Practices of a Healthy Life. This work was inspired by Pia Mellody and has become the foundation for many models of therapy. We talk about doing inner child work, feelings reduction work, and standing in your truth. We also touch on the importance of self-esteem and boundaries. Jan is the co-founder of the Healing Our Core Issues Institute. She is the author of the new book, Gifts From a Challenging Childhood. She has...


094: ADHD and Couples Therapy with Ari Tuckman

In this episode, Ari Tuckman describes how he often sees clients where what is being defined as "problematic behavior" is actually due to undiagnosed ADHD. Ari gives us a lot of information about how to work with these clients and how to help them feel more connected. Ari is an expert at working with ADHD, relationships and is also a sex therapist. He has written 4 books and has a podcast about ADHD called More Attention, Less Deficit. Books: ADHD After Dark: Better Sex Life, Better...


093: Men and Communication with Robert Kandell

When it comes to communication, there are differences in the way that we are socialized as men and women. In this conversation with Robert Kandell, he breaks down some important aspects of that communication so that people can be more successful and connected. Robert is an accomplished teacher, coach, and lecturer. An expert in interpersonal communication and relationships, he has helped thousands of students find a more balanced, energized life with better relationships, more sex and more...


092: People of Color and Couples Therapy with Dr. Angela Clack

In this episode, Dr. Angela Clack discusses cultural legacies that have been passed down for generations. She talks about how to make people from minority cultures feel accepted and understood and hold space for the change that needs to happen in relationships. Dr. Clack is known for her ability to teach, supervise, coach, and provide training in various areas pertaining to children, youth, and their families. Because of her training and teaching abilities, Dr. Clack has made a massive...


091: Deirdre Fay on Feeling Safely Attached

In this episode, Deirdra Fay talks about the transformational change that is possible when we understand attachment and trauma and are able to do deeper work within ourselves. Deirdre talks about the seven steps to a solid internal world and helps people learn how to become safely embodied. Deirdra is the Author of Becoming Safely Embodied and Attachment-Based Yoga and Meditation for Trauma Recovery. She is also publishing a new book soon. She does a lot of teaching for therapists and has...


090: Attachment Styles with Annie Chen

The topic of attachment has been becoming more and more prevalent in the world of relationships. The research is getting more and more clear about how important it is to understand attachment if we are to understand our own identity and our work with relationships. Research on attachment is guided by the assumption that the same motivational system that gives rise to the close emotional bond between parents and their children is responsible for the bond that develops between adults in...


089: Infertility, Postpartum Depression, and Perinatal Loss with Bina Bird

So many of the couples we work with are going through the baby phase of their life. Whether they are trying to get pregnant, are pregnant, have lost a child, or just had a baby, there is going to be a lot of stress and a lot that is hard to predict. Unfortunately, there has historically been a lack of education about this for couples and a lack of support. In this episode Bina Bird talks all about how to help and guide these couples as they go through these phases and how to identify if...


088: Lynn Grodzki on Bringing Aspects of Coaching into Therapy

In this episode with Lynn Grodzki, we talk about bringing aspects of coaching into our work with couples in therapy. There is a lot we can learn to make sure we are retaining clients in today's marketplace. Lynn talks about 9 skills we can start bringing into our practice now. Lynn Grodzki is a practice building expert who has helped hundreds of thousands of therapists and helping professionals build the practice they want. Lynn has written 6 books listed below including best seller,...


087: Sex Talk with Erika Miley

In this episode, Erika Miley talks about the importance for therapists to get more comfortable with talking about sex. We all have our own sex "stuff" and the more we explore that and get education about sex, the more we can help the couples we work with. Erika Miley is a mental and sex therapist. She is the founder of the center for mental and sexual health. She hosts a podcast called Sex Talk with Erika Miley and has a facebook group called Sex Talk with Erika Miley Professionals...


086: Martha Kauppi on Working with Open Relationships

There is a growing reality of non-traditional couples who are coming in for relationship therapy. People who are in polyamorous relationships, want to open up their relationship or are among a number of other sexually marginalized populations are looking for guidance. As therapists we might not always know how to work with these types of relationships, but it is our responsibility to be as compassionate, understanding, and as open as possible. In this episode Martha Kauppi talks about how...


085: The 5 Stages of Relationships with Leanne Clarkson

In this episode Leanne Clarkson talks about the Developmental Model of Couples Therapy which was created by Ellyn Bader and Peter Pearson. This is one of the leading model of couples therapy and Leanne does an amazing job of describing some of the ways this model can be used with couples. She identifies the 5 stages of couple's development which include: 1. The honeymoon phase 2. Differentiation 3. Exploration 4. Reconnection and 5. Synergy Leanne Clarkson, MPCC is a clinical counselor...


084: Men and Masculinity with Joseph Losi

There are very different ways that men and women are socialized in our culture. Often, this reality is unspoken and creates challenges for relationships. As therapists, we frequently see this in our office and it can be a challenge to know how to address the situation. In this episode, Joseph Losi talks about a healthy masculinity and what men can do to be more intimate, vulnerable, and connected to their emotions. Joseph A. Losi, MA, LMFT walks with couples, men and women toward a more...


083: Keeping it Real with Couples with Jasmine Foulkes

In this episode, Jasmine Foulkes talks about her journey in becoming a therapist and what has been helpful for her in her work with couples. She has a talent for connecting with couples and uses emotionally focused therapy as the primary model that she works from. Jasmine is a therapist in Nottingham, England. Using EFT, she helps couples have greater insight, raise self-awareness, and improve communication. She encourages and ability for couples to reach out when they feel distress. The...


082: Wendy Behary on Working with Narcissism

When working with clients in therapy I often wonder if someone might be displaying aspects of narcissism. I often question myself and my reality. It is important to realize that partner of people with narcissism feel this way all the time. The following is from Wendy Behary's website: Typically, narcissists display ten of the following thirteen traits: Wendy Behary is a leader in working with people with narcissism. She is the founder and director of The Cognitive Therapy Center of New...


081: Healing from Heartbreak with Chautè Thompson

For many people, one of the most difficult times in their life can be going through a breakup or divorce or experiencing some other brokenness in their relationship. Because we are wired to connect as humans, going through this heartbreak can feel like a significant trauma. It is important to have the tools, support and resources to go through this type of experience. Chautè Thompson talks all about how to recover from these types of situations in the episode today. She wrote a book...


080: Lori Gottlieb on Normalizing the Human Experience

So often, the individuals and couples we see in therapy feel alone in their experiences. As therapists, art of what we can to for them, is make them accepted and normal. We can help them to feel like they don't have to be so alone in whatever it is they are experiencing. Even in our own experience as therapists we often feel alone and think to ourselves, "am I the only one?" Lori Gottlieb reveals all in her column as well as her new book, Maybe You Should Talk to Someone. She discusses what...


079: EFT and Attachment Injuries with Leanne Campbell and David Fairweather

We have had a few episodes about emotionally focused therapy (EFT) lately and for good reason. EFT is one of the most well respected and widely used models of couples therapy. This conversation focuses specifically on how couples heal if there has been an affair or other attachment injury. Leanne Campbell and David Fairweather go into detail about the use of EFT to heal attachment injuries from trauma. They talk about being able to anchor the process of grief resolution in the context of...