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The Couples Therapist Couch

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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047: George Faller on Pursuers and Withdrawers in EFT

Many couples fall into a predictable dance that neither one of them want to be in. They end up being stuck in this pattern and can't seem to free themselves. One partner is the pursuer and one partner is that withdrawer. The more the pursuer pursues, the more the withdrawer withdraws. In order to make progress, both partner must be able to give up their stance in this situation.   George Faller has seen this pattern play out time and time again and has helped couples to be understanding of each other and make new moves that enable them to be free of the vicious cycles they get stuck in. George teaches couples that they can understand the pattern and work together. It is all about trusting the other partner and being able to change the dynamic.   George Faller is a husband father, therapist, educator, speaker, writer, and global leading in helping people reconnect and strengthen their relationships. He is a certified Supervisor/Trainer/Therapist in EFT (Emotionally Focused Therapy) and founder of the New York Center for Emotionally Focused Therapy, where he serves as president.   The Couples Therapist Couch is the podcast for Couples Therapists about the practice of couples therapy. The host, Shane Birkel, interviews an expert in the field of couples therapy each week. There is an episode released every Tuesday about the practice of couples therapy. Please subscribe to the podcast for more great episodes! If you enjoyed the episode please leave a rating and review on iTunes. Click here to join the Couples Therapist Couch Facebook Group Check out George's website at georgefaller.com Find out more about George's book Sacred Stress

49mins

5 Jun 2018

Rank #1

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062: The 5 Core Issues from Pia Mellody and RLT with Kim Ploussard

Babies aren't born with the ability to have a healthy self-esteem and good boundaries with others. As humans, we learn these things from our parents, but often the education and modeling in our upbringing is lacking in some way. This relational trauma is what causes stress and problems for us in our adult relationships throughout our lives.  In this episode, Kim Ploussard talks about the 5 core issues that form the foundation of Pia Mellody's work. This is the framework for Terry Real's Relational Life Therapy and he credits Pia with providing the foundation for much of what he teaches. The 5 core issues are: 1. Self-esteem 2. Boundaries 3. Reality issues 4. Dependency 5. Moderation.  Kim Ploussard works a lot with couples in her practice in Albany, NY. She also does trauma intensives and is one of the coaches for Relational Life Therapy. The Couples Therapist Couch is the podcast for Couples Therapists about the practice of couples therapy. The host, Shane Birkel, interviews an expert in the field of couples therapy each week. There is an episode released every Tuesday about the practice of couples therapy. Please subscribe to the podcast for more great episodes. Get your free copy of The Comparison of 7 different Models of Couples Therapy. Click here to join the Couples Therapist Couch Facebook Group. Check out Kim's website at albanylifeworks.com Learn more about the Healing Trauma Network

55mins

18 Sep 2018

Rank #2

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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 emotionally intimate relationships. The interview today was with Annie Chen who wrote The Attachment Theory Workbook. Not only does it go into depth explaining the different attachment styles, it also has tons of great activities to find out more about yourself on a personal level. Annie Chen is a licensed marriage and family therapist with a private practice in Oakland, California, focused on working with couples. She holds master's degrees in counseling and Process-Oriented Psychology. The Couples Therapist Couch is the podcast for Couples Therapists about the practice of couples therapy. The host, Shane Birkel, interviews an expert in the field of couples therapy each week. Take the attachment quiz at attachmentquiz.com Find out more about Annie's book, The Attachment Theory Workbook Please subscribe to the podcast for more great episodes. Get your free course called Working with Couples 101 Click here to join the Couples Therapist Couch Facebook Group Today's Sponsor The Kauai Retreat for Therapists The CAV Academy presents the Kauai Retreat for therapists on Kauai, Hawaii from February 13-15 2020. There are 3 days of workshops exploring the practice of Couples Therapy including one full day intensive with Terry Real. Sign up here!

56mins

18 Jun 2019

Rank #3

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004: Discernment Counseling with Rachel Zamore

Sometimes couples aren't sure whether they are ready to work on their relationship or not. When this happens it isn't appropriate to do traditional couples therapy until both partners buy in to the process of therapy. Rachel Zamore gives us a closer look at how to work with these mixed agenda couples using Discernment Counseling. This is the podcast for couples therapists that explores the practice of couples therapy. Shane Birkel, LMFT interviews an expert in the field of couples therapy each week. Come join the conversation in the Facebook group, The Couples Therapist Couch. Please subscribe!

51mins

19 Sep 2017

Rank #4

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003: State-dependent Couples Therapy with Kerry Lusignan

Welcome to the third episode of The Couples Therapist Couch, a podcast by couples therapist, Shane Birkel. This is the podcast for Couples Therapists, Marriage Counselors, and Relationship Coaches to explored the practice of couples therapy. In this episode Shane interviews expert, Kerry Lusignan. Subscribe for more great content!

47mins

12 Sep 2017

Rank #5

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056: Gottman and Infidelity with Jennifer Lagrotte

There is so much to consider when working with couples after an affair. The partner who feels betrayed is having a traumatic experience. They feel like the very person the depend on to support them is the one who has done something to hurt them more than anything. It is very important as therapists for us to have a clear sense of how we are helping people heal and recover from these situations. Dr. Jennifer Lagrotte describes the method for dealing with affairs that is taught by the Gottman Institute. The process involves the steps of Atone, Attune, Attach and she goes into detail as to what this looks like in our work with clients. Dr. Jennifer Lagrotte, DMFT, LMHC, LMFT, a therapist in practice in Parkland, FL, specializes in working with couples.  She is an expert on showing couples how to stop fighting and start communicating. Her passion is couples, and she has dedicated her work to exclusively working with couples.  Her speciality is affair recovery and uses the Atone/Attune/Attach Method, learned from in-person training with Julie and John Gottman. Learn more about her style at www.facetofacetherapy.com If you want to find out the top 10 reasons people cheat or take a quiz on infidelity you can take a look here https://www.facetofacetherapy.com/therapy-services/infidelity/ The Couples Therapist Couch is the podcast for Couples Therapists about the practice of couples therapy. The host, Shane Birkel, interviews an expert in the field of couples therapy each week. There is an episode released every Tuesday about the practice of couples therapy. Please subscribe to the podcast for more great episodes! If you enjoyed the episode please leave a rating and review on iTunes. Click here to join the Couples Therapist Couch Facebook Group Learn more about the membership site for Couples Therapists and get on the list at https://couplestherapistcouch.com/work-with-me/

48mins

7 Aug 2018

Rank #6

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037: Janis Abrahms Spring on Healing After an Affair

How do unfaithful partners typically respond differently than hurt partners after an affair? What constitutes an affair - intercourse? Instant messaging? Flirting? How can unfaithful partners take responsibility for the damage they caused and earn forgiveness?  These are just a few of the many questions that leave couples feeling confused about what to do after there has been an affair. Janis Abrahms Spring, PhD has beautifully answered these questions in her book, After the Affair: Healing the Pain and Rebuilding Trust When a Partner Has Been Unfaithful. She normalizes and reassures couples about what they are going through in a way that gives them hope. That book has been incredibly successful and has sold over 500,000 copies. In addition to that she has written two other books which are linked below. She has been in practice for over 40 years in Westport, Connecticut.  The Couples Therapist Couch is the podcast for Couples Therapists about the practice of couples therapy. The host, Shane Birkel, interviews an expert in the field of couples therapy each week. There is an episode released every Tuesday about the practice of couples therapy. Please subscribe to the podcast for more great episodes! If you enjoyed the episode please leave a rating and review on iTunes. Click here to join the Couples Therapist Couch Facebook Group. Check out Dr. Spring's website at janisaspring.com Books After the Affair: Healing the Pain and Rebuilding Trust When a Partner Has Been Unfaithful How Can I Forgive You? The Courage to Forgive, the Freedom Not To Life with Pop: Lessons on Caring for an Aging Parent

52mins

27 Mar 2018

Rank #7

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038: Terry Real on Relational Life Therapy

Traditional therapy has done a great job of providing clients with a warm, loving, compassionate environment to heal. Unfortunately, it falls short when it comes to bringing up difficult truths to people when that is necessary. In this episode, Terry Real talks about the three phases of his model, Relational Life Therapy (RLT), the first of which is joining through the truth. In this way he begins the process of creating quick, profound change in the individuals and couples he works with.  During the conversation we get into stance-stance-dance, empowering the latent, using a lot of pause, grandiosity, inner child work, and many of the other aspects of Terry's model for couples therapists (RLT). Terry Real is a leader in the field of couples therapy. He has written 3 books which are linked below, numerous articles, and has been featured in countless interviews with media outlets. He is the founder of the Relational Life Institute and continues to work with couples as well as train therapists. For more information on his upcoming level one training click the link below. The Couples Therapist Couch is the podcast for Couples Therapists about the practice of couples therapy. The host, Shane Birkel, interviews an expert in the field of couples therapy each week. There is an episode released every Tuesday about the practice of couples therapy. Please subscribe to the podcast for more great episodes! If you enjoyed the episode please leave a rating and review on iTunes. Click here to join the Couples Therapist Couch Facebook Group. Check out Terry Real's website at terryreal.com Click here to learn more about RLT level 1 training Books The New Rules of Marriage: What You Need to Know to Make Love Work How Can I Get Through to You? Closing the Intimacy Gap Between Men and Women I Don't Want to Talk About It: Overcoming the Secret Legacy of Male Depression

45mins

3 Apr 2018

Rank #8

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030: Helping Couples Cope After Infidelity with Terri DiMatteo

Everyone knows someone who has been impacted by infidelity. It is such a prevalent reality in our society, yet there is still so much taboo and limited understanding in the way that we talk about it. There tends to be a lot of shame and judgement involved which can make it even more difficult for couples to work through it. In this interview with Terri DiMatteo we talk about how to help couples affected by infidelity and betrayal. We go into detail about how to guide couples to have a different perspective and learn to trust and depend on each other again.  Terri DiMatteo is a Licensed Professional Counselor in New Jersey and the founder of Open Door Therapy. She spent many years as an Early Childhood Specialist where she learned about the work of John Bowlby and Attachment Theory. She brings that understanding into her work with couples. She specializes in helping couples cope with infidelity.  The Couples Therapist Couch is the podcast for Couples Therapists about the practice of couples therapy. The host, Shane Birkel, interviews an expert in the field of couples therapy each week. There is an episode released every Tuesday about the practice of couples therapy. Please subscribe to the podcast for more great episodes! Click here to join the Couples Therapist Couch Facebook Group. Check out Terri's practice website at opendoortherapy.net Check out Terri's blog loveBONDS Here is a link to her podcast on iTunes. It is called Love Bonds

53mins

13 Feb 2018

Rank #9

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026: Less Conflict, More Connection with Figs O'Sullivan

All couples get stuck in emotional interactions and patterns that lead to them feeling hurt and wanting to be loved at the same time. It can feel very confusing when the person who we feel is hurting us is also the one who we want to love us. Figs O'Sullivan talks about getting beyond the content of these couples interactions to guide couples to be more understanding and feel more connected. Figs is a Couples Therapist in San Francisco and the creator of the relationship quiz, Empathi. He has studied various couples therapy modalities, but is particularly dedicated to Emotionally Focused Therapy.  The Couples Therapist Couch is the podcast for Couples Therapists about the practice of couples therapy. The host, Shane Birkel, interviews an expert in the field of couples therapy each week. There is an episode released every Tuesday about the practice of couples therapy. Please subscribe to the podcast for more great episodes! Click here to join the Couples Therapist Couch Facebook Group. Check out Figs's practice website at therapywithfigs.com Check out the relationship quiz Figs created at Emaphi.com

1hr 1min

23 Jan 2018

Rank #10

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020: How to Ask About Sex in Couples Therapy with Martha Kauppi

Most Couples Therapists understand the importance of bringing sex into the conversation in couples therapy. Unfortunately, most feel unprepared to know what questions to ask, how to make clients feel comfortable, and what to do with the information once it is part of the conversation. In this episode, Sex Therapist, Martha Kauppi and I talk all about how to do that. She has identified 6 questions that she says should be a part of the assessment process for every couple we see. She clearly breaks down important issues that we should be specifically asking about and what to do with that information. Martha Kauppi has a lifelong career in sexual health, counseling, and creative education. She has been a midwife, an artist, and is currently a certified sex therapist. She is the founder of The Institute for Relational Intimacy which is committed to competence working with a full array of sex issues, including sexual health concerns, alternative sexualities, problematic sexual behavior, and LGBTQAI+ related concerns. The Couples Therapist Couch is the podcast for Couples Therapists about the practice of couples therapy. The host, Shane Birkel, interviews an expert in the field of couples therapy each week. There is an episode released every Tuesday about the practice of couples therapy. Please subscribe to the podcast for more great episodes! Click here to join the Couples Therapist Couch Facebook Group. Resources For more information visit Martha's website at instituteforrelationalintimacy.com Sign up here for the free mini workshop. The next 16 week course starts on February 5. Go to the website for more information.

52mins

19 Dec 2017

Rank #11

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052: Harville Hendrix on Imago Couples Therapy

This episode explores fundamental questions like why do we fall in love, why do couples fight and how can couples work through conflict? Harville Hendrix has been on the forefront of teaching about relationships for decades. He is the founder of the couples therapy model called Imago Couples Therapy. Harville Hendrix Ph.D. and Helen LaKelly Hunt Ph.D. are internationally-respected couple's therapists, educators, speakers, and New York Times bestselling authors. Together, they have written over 10 books with more than 4 million copies sold, including the timeless classic, Getting the Love You Want: A Guide for Couples. In addition, Harville has appeared on the Oprah Winfrey television program 17 times. The Couples Therapist Couch is the podcast for Couples Therapists about the practice of couples therapy. The host, Shane Birkel, interviews an expert in the field of couples therapy each week. There is an episode released every Tuesday about the practice of couples therapy. Please subscribe to the podcast for more great episodes! If you enjoyed the episode please leave a rating and review on iTunes. Click here to join the Couples Therapist Couch Facebook Group To learn more check out harvilleandhelen.com and relationshipsfirst.org

56mins

10 Jul 2018

Rank #12

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106: Sue Johnson on Emotionally Focused Therapy

In this episode, Dr. Sue Johnson talks about the beginning of Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy and the lack of options for Couples Therapists to get training at the time.  Dr. Sue Johnson is an author, clinical psychologist, researcher, professor, popular presenter and speaker and a leading innovator in the field of couple therapy and adult attachment. Sue is the primary developer of Emotionally Focused Couples and Family Therapy (EFT), which has demonstrated its effectiveness in over 30 years of peer-reviewed clinical research. She is founding Director of the International Centre for Excellence in Emotionally Focused Therapy (ICEEFT). Find out more about Sue at drsuejohnson.com Find out more about EFT trainings at iceeft.com The Couples Therapist Couch is the podcast for Couples Therapists about the practice of couples therapy. The host, Shane Birkel, interviews an expert in the field of couples therapy each week. Please subscribe to the podcast for more great episodes. See below for more information on the Couples Therapist Inner Circle. Get your free course called Working with Couples 101 Click here to join the Couples Therapist Couch Facebook Group Today's Sponsor The Couples Therapist Inner Circle This is the Membership Site for Couples Therapists. There is a workshop every month on topics like EFT, Gottman, Infidelity, and Working with Sex. Additionally there are regular question and answer sessions and opportunities to talk about cases.

1hr 7mins

10 Dec 2019

Rank #13

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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 and certified couples counselor from the Couples Institute; Bader/Pearson Developmental Model, and an Addictions Counselor in Vancouver, Canada. The Couples Therapist Couch is the podcast for Couples Therapists about the practice of couples therapy. The host, Shane Birkel, interviews an expert in the field of couples therapy each week. Please subscribe to the podcast for more great episodes. Get your free copy of The Comparison of 7 different Models of Couples Therapy. Click here to join the Couples Therapist Couch Facebook Group Check out Leanne's website at www.heartsmatter.ca Today's Sponsor Brighter Vision Brighter Vision makes amazing websites for therapists. Go to www.brightervision.com/try/couples/ to get one month free off your Brighter Vision subscription. Let Brighter Vision help you build the practice of your dreams.

46mins

7 May 2019

Rank #14

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028: Exploring EFT with Jim Thomas

Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy (EFT) is one of the most well regarded models being used by couples therapists today. In this episode Jim Thomas offers a glimpse into some of the aspects of EFT that make it so powerful when used well with couples. Jim Thomas has received supervision from the founder of EFT, Sue Johnson and is an ICEEFT Certified EFT Trainer and a member of the ICEEFT Strategic Planning Committee dedicated to spreading the word about EFT. He still does a lot of work with couples, much of which is in intensive therapy sessions. Jim also does a lot of workshops and trainings for therapists. Jim is facilitating an EFT externship on May 30-June 2 in Denver. The Couples Therapist Couch is the podcast for Couples Therapists about the practice of couples therapy. The host, Shane Birkel, interviews an expert in the field of couples therapy each week. There is an episode released every Tuesday about the practice of couples therapy. Please subscribe to the podcast for more great episodes! Click here to join the Couples Therapist Couch Facebook Group. Check out Jim's practice website at www.jimthomas.care Find out more about the EFT Externship Jim is leading.

1hr 1min

6 Feb 2018

Rank #15

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078: Stan Tatkin on Understanding Your Partner's Brain

After years of studying couples, neuroscience, and attachment, Dr. Stan Tatkin knows what is necessary for a deep, enduring relationship. In this episode we talk all about those factors and also where couples get off track.  Stan is the founder of the PACT institute which stands for the Psychobiological Approach to Couples Therapy. He is one of the leading trainers in the world of couples therapy and offers an extensive certification program in this model. Pact has a reputation for effectively treating the most difficult couples. Click the link to check out the previous interview with Stan in episode #35. The Couples Therapist Couch is the podcast for Couples Therapists about the practice of couples therapy. The host, Shane Birkel, interviews an expert in the field of couples therapy each week. Please subscribe to the podcast for more great episodes. Get your free copy of The Comparison of 7 different Models of Couples Therapy. Click here to join the Couples Therapist Couch Facebook Group Visit Stan's website at stantatkin.com Also check out thepactinstitute.com

50mins

19 Mar 2019

Rank #16

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014: Addiction and Couples Therapy with Bob Navarra

Addiction and substance abuse are significant issues that affect a huge number of relationships. Unfortunately, many therapists feel incompetent to work with couples when this is a presenting issue. Dr. Bob Navarra sheds light on this matter by giving therapists a new way of thinking about couples and addiction. Bob Navarra is a master Gottman Therapist and has over 35 years of experience working with couples. He has done extensive work with couples and addiction and now teaches a training to help educate therapists about how to work with this. Couples Therapist Couch is the podcast for Couples Therapists about the practice of couples therapy. The host, Shane Birkel, interviews an expert in the field of couples therapy each week. There is an episode released every Tuesday about the practice of couples therapy and a bonus episode the first Thursday of each month about the business of private practice. Please subscribe to the podcast for more great episodes! Resources Visit Bob's website at robertnavarra.net Visit the facebook page called Couples Recovery Check out the trainings and resources available at the Gottman Institute Assessments mentioned Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT) CAGE questionnaire Click here to join the Couples Therapist Couch Facebook Group

53mins

14 Nov 2017

Rank #17

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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 happiness. He is the host of the highly successful podcast, TuffLove and author of the recent Amazon #1 Best Seller – unHIDDEN – A Book for Men and Those Confused By Them. Check out Robert's website at robertkantell.com Please subscribe to the podcast for more great episodes. Get your free course called Working with Couples 101 Click here to join the Couples Therapist Couch Facebook Group Today's Sponsor The Kauai Retreat for Therapists The CAV Academy presents the Kauai Retreat for therapists on Kauai, Hawaii from February 13-15 2020. There are 3 days of workshops exploring the practice of Couples Therapy including one full day intensive with Terry Real. Sign up here!

45mins

27 Aug 2019

Rank #18

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068: Emotionally Focused Therapy Training with Jill Fischer

This episode is with Jill Fischer who is a leading Emotionally Focused supervisor and trainer. She provides listeners with a fantastic overview of EFT as a model and what is necessary for training. Emotionally Focused Therapy is one of the leading models in the world of couples therapy. We talked about the externship, core skills training, and how your own personal work as a therapist can enhance your ability to go deeper with the couples you work with.  The Couples Therapist Couch is the podcast for Couples Therapists about the practice of couples therapy. The host, Shane Birkel, interviews an expert in the field of couples therapy each week. Please subscribe to the podcast for more great episodes. Get your free copy of The Comparison of 7 different Models of Couples Therapy. Click here to join the Couples Therapist Couch Facebook Group. Visit Jill's website at positivecouples.com

48mins

6 Nov 2018

Rank #19

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027: Harriet Lerner on Apologizing

A meaningful apology can transform a relationship. A lackluster apology can just as easily lead to major problems in people's ability to connect.  For the past 2 decades, Dr. Harriet Lerner has studied the art of the apology and recently just published her latest book called Why Won't You Apologize? Harriet Lerner is one of the nation's most loved and respected relationship experts, renowned for her scholarly work on the psychology of women and family dynamics. She has written 12 books including the New York Times bestselling The Dance of Anger, which has sold several million copies. The Couples Therapist Couch is the podcast for Couples Therapists about the practice of couples therapy. The host, Shane Birkel, interviews an expert in the field of couples therapy each week. There is an episode released every Tuesday about the practice of couples therapy. Please subscribe to the podcast for more great episodes! Click here to join the Couples Therapist Couch Facebook Group. Watch Harriet's TED talk on apologizing: TED Talk Find out more about Harriet's book, Why Won't You Apologize? Visit Harriet's website at https://www.harrietlerner.com/

47mins

30 Jan 2018

Rank #20