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Marriage & Relationship Counseling in Scottsdale, AZ

Strengthen Your Marriage and Relationships

Marriage & Relationship counseling can strengthen and improve your most meaningful connections.

Our licensed professionals are available to help with the following:

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“Behind every great relationship are difficult and uncomfortable conversations we rarely get to see. Great relationships don’t just fall into our laps. They require people to move through their fears and insecurities and do the hard work to move wounds into healing.”Vienna Pharaon

Do the following questions apply to you and your marriage or relationship?

Relationships can’t simply be placed on auto-pilot. They need consistent effort, education, and growth to be successful. This applies to any and all relationships too – from casual dating to committed partnerships, and of course to marriages.

Failing to put forward the effort to learn how to grow past certain challenges in your path can have devastating consequences for your relationship.

Marriage and relationship counseling can be invaluable to you and those you care about. While many people feel they have a good grasp of their emotions and a solid ability to communicate, working with a professional therapist can help you and your partner see just how much there still is to learn about yourselves.

While individual counseling has its merits, there are situations where there is infinitely more value in approaching counseling as a relationship unit, or a team if you will.

There are many options for marriage and relationship counseling, and each approaches the counseling or relationship issue in a unique way. We’re going to take a look at the most common counseling options for those experiencing challenges in their relationship, and how each one is designed to offer a unique solution to an array of issues.

When you reach out to Pathways Counseling, we can create a counseling plan tailored to the core needs of your relationship.

This is a safe space free of judgment, and we will work with you for what you and your partner need for the highest good of both of you. We help you build healthy relationships. In order to provide the best counseling outcomes, the sessions are typically 75 minutes. This allows the couple and the counselor to all have time to address the issues and leave in a more positive state.

I’ve had a few other therapists prior to finding Pathways Counseling and every single counselor at Pathways is amazing. I’ve had amazing benefits from their therapy both individually and with my spouse. I highly recommend all of them.

* Amy (client)

Marriage Counseling

Many people think that marriage counseling is only for couples in a troubled marriage, but this is not true.

Marriage counseling can be beneficial for enhancing marriages and relationships and addressing active issues or problems. Additionally, it aids partners in improving communication and mutual support within the relationship.

This support and enhanced communication stem from partnering with an experienced therapist who addresses underlying issues, enabling each partner to navigate challenges on their own timeline. Pathways’ counselors’ commitment is evident, contributing to our recognition as one of Scottsdale’s top three marriage and relationship counselors.

We understand that some marriages present more challenges than others. Some married couples have patterns of dysfunctional behavior or thought patterns that have contributed to a variety of unhealthy behaviors and coping mechanisms.

Our marriage counselors want to help each partner examine their role in those behaviors, while problematic thought patterns and communication habits are uncovered, and better techniques implemented.

Couples Therapy

Couples therapy is a form of general counseling aimed at assisting relationships in resolving issues and challenges to foster growth.

Generalized couples therapy offers a key benefit: it’s accessible to all relationship statuses, orientations, and partner identifications.

This approach is helpful for individuals in casual or dating relationships, as well as those in pre-marriage or marriage stages. It’s also valuable for anyone seeking a deeper understanding of their thoughts and emotions within their relationship.

Couples counseling is often used to examine and work through:

  • Problems with communication
  • Sexual challenges or incompatibilities
  • Challenges or conflicts arising from parenting or raising blended families
  • Problems surrounding substance use disorder or alcohol use disorder
  • Emotional regulation issues like anger
  • Infidelity

For many couples, the decision to begin counseling is a significant one. However, it’s important to remember that going to counseling is nothing to be ashamed of, and is the most effective way to work through many challenges relating to mental and emotional health.

Infidelity Counseling

“Forgiveness does not change the past, but it does enlarge the future.”

– Paul Boose

The topic of infidelity is perhaps one of the most sensitive in a relationship. For many, it constitutes a violation of the most intimate levels of trust that one person can have in another.

Relationships that experience issues with infidelity can leave one partner feeling emotionally crushed, and questioning their worth in the relationship. It can also be a source of extreme shame for those involved, which can make it incredibly difficult to discuss openly and subsequently heal from.

One of the most reliable ways to begin recovering from infidelity in your relationship is to begin infidelity counseling. No matter what the conditions were that created the issue, in many cases, professional counseling can help the couple grow past the event.

There is always the potential for forgiveness, hope, and healing, but in most situations, it will require help and guidance from a professional therapist.

Recovering from instances of infidelity in a relationship is often difficult. It can feel nearly impossible since the deep sense of trust that was once there has since been shattered. However, hard work and communication can help lead to a rebuilt foundation of trust. In many cases, working together on rebuilding trust has the potential to be stronger than before, leading to a better and more loving relationship with increased longevity.

Premarital Counseling

Though it is often overlooked in today’s fast-paced life, premarital counseling can have a dramatic effect on boosting the success rate of relationships.

After all, successful relationships don’t just grow from a perfect meeting story. Truly successful relationships need to be worked on and cultivated, and those involved need to dedicate time and effort to make them last.

Many problems prior to and during a marriage come from simple issues with communication. 

These issues can stem from things like who does the dishes to who is in charge of the finances and bills. By entering into premarital counseling, partners can work on ensuring they are bringing solid communication skills into their marriage. 

It can also help each partner to make sure that they are entering into marriage only after having set appropriate and realistic expectations for the relationship.

By having already gone over many of the potential challenges or issues, the marriage can enjoy a stronger, healthier start, and a more resilient.

LGBTQIA+ Counseling

Love is universal, and at Pathways, we recognize the uniqueness of your relationship, regardless of your partner’s gender identity. However, it’s important to acknowledge that individuals within the LGBTQ+ community often confront distinct challenges that might not be experienced by those in traditional cis or heterosexual relationships. Over time, these challenges can impact one or both partners and the relationship itself.

Pathways Counseling Services offers safe and judgment-free relationship counseling for couples in the LGBTQIA+ community. Our goal is to assist couples hoping to try and work through some of the stress and even trauma that can result from simply being with your partner in your relationship. This is in addition to the normal relationship stressors that occur in any relationship such as money issues, sexual communication, or even daily household chores.

Some of the unique challenges your relationship may face:

  • Being out, together, in daily life
  • Dating and potential issues of jealousy
  • Dealing with family objections to your relationship
  • General discrimination in daily life
  • Stress surrounding getting married
  • Stress related to building a family or parenting

Divorce Counseling

Most individuals do not enter marriage with the intention of eventually getting divorced. However, it’s an undeniable fact that certain relationships, which evolve into marriage, might eventually come to an end through divorce.

When this occurs, it can be an incredibly emotional and even traumatic period for those within the relationship. The impact extends to their families, particularly when children are involved.

Even though we never expect it can happen to us, when it does, it’s important to understand that having an impartial third party can help lend a lot of objectivity to the situation. This objectivity alone can be beneficial for all parties involved.

Divorce counseling can be a vital approach, aiding in comprehending the emotional and psychological aspects of divorce. This is crucial due to the potential severity of divorce and similar breakups, which rank among life’s most distressing and traumatic experiences, rivaled only by the loss of a loved one.

Pathways Counseling Services will never lead you to one decision over another. That said, we can help you better understand how to cope with, and potentially navigate the path as it unfolds before you. Divorce can be the impetus for a period of significant growth, given the right counseling and personal insight.

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Dating Counseling

Modern dating can feel like one of the most futile efforts for many. While on one hand, most people want to eventually find love and create a healthy and happy partnership, the process involved with actual dating can be tiresome, and even depressing. 

Not only are you dating to try and find someone that you would want to spend the rest of your life with, but you’re also trying to do so in a way that is compatible with your mental health. 

Dating can often trigger intense emotions, leading to exhaustion and a significant toll on well-being.

This effect only grows and compounds as you spend more time in the dating scene going through partner after partner, and ending up with disappointment after disappointment. 

To ease the challenges of dating, many opt for dating counseling. This approach blends professional guidance with your dating journey, fostering personal growth and achieving developmental milestones.

How Dating Counseling Can Help

Similar to talking it out with a close friend, working with one of the Pathways counselors can help you see your situation from another perspective. Only in our case, we won’t pass judgment or push you one way or another. We’ll help guide you on the best path for your unique needs.

This change in perspective is often just what’s needed to identify trends in behavior or emotions, or things that aren’t working that can be improved upon.

A skilled dating counselor in Scottsdale can assist you in discovering effective approaches during your quest for love. We also provide guidance, feedback, and emotional support as you strive to make positive changes in your personal life.

Dating counselors help you identify things that don’t work for you, anf they can also help you become your overall best self. You can begin capitalizing on your strengths and learning the skills and emotional tools to help attract the type of companionship you want.

Sexual Intimacy Issues

Talking about sexual inimacy issues is a healthy part of a relationship. Sex is part of relationships. Sometimes it’s easy to talk about. Other times it’s hard. Sexual counseling helps partners talk about it, in a safe environment. A trained counselor is there to guide the talk and assist in opening up to each other.

Couples will learn about better communication. To learn how to talk, how to express feelings and how to listen to each other. Desires of each partner can be discussed and lead to a better understanding. If one partner is less confident expressing what they want, this is a way to talk. A new understanding can be achieved between the partners.

Some people have sexual worries. You might feel like you are not desirable and don’t know why. Sexual counseling can help find the reasons. There might be a need for healing from past hurts or relationships. Maybe this is having a negative impact for one or both partners and counseling can bring this to a healthy resolution.

All of the counseling is in a private setting, and will stay that way. The counselor will listen to the concerns and worries. The counselor will give advice and solutions.

Sex is not just an physical act. It’s an expression. It says “I trust you.” Or “I love you.” Counseling ensures this message is clear and understood.

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Relationship Counseling

No matter what type of relationship you are in, keeping it healthy will require a significant amount of effort, attention, intention, and support types.

This means that regardless of your relationship type, it will require work, and it will face challenges now and then. While major stressful events can shake a relationship to its core, the simple stress of daily life can also take its toll. 

While many relationships can benefit from couples counseling, there are also many situations where individual relationship counseling can be the most effective solution for a healthy and long-lasting relationship.

Even though stress and problems can make partners feel isolated, you don’t have to carry that burden alone. Speaking with a professional to develop skills and tools that you can use in your relationship to increase its resilience.

Another benefit of going through relationship counseling as an individual (i.e. without your partner) is that it can often help those who may be hesitant to get help in a couples counseling setting.
While many people are open to working on their emotional or psychological issues, they often don’t want to unpack those difficulties in front of even their most trusted partner. Sometimes making improvements on ourselves is critical for the betterment of the relationships we have – romantic or otherwise. You can be a devoted partner and take care of your personal struggles.

Trauma Bonding

Trauma Bonding can happen in different types of relationships.

You and your partner – you ride a roller coaster of emotions, with the highs and lows involved. You don’t understand how a person can be so angry and mean one minute and then come back with such affection right after.

Your long time friend can be so cruel and mean, and yet, you’ve been there for each other for much of your lives and you can’t imagine not communicating. Besides, there’s other things going on and you are just the place they can vent.

Your co-worker and you make a great team, but sometimes it feels like there is some back stabbing going on. You need to keep the peace, and work together, but it’s being harder and harder.

What you are feeling is real. This behavior puts one person in a position of power over the other one. You continue to live, work, interact in an unhealthy kind of world and relationship. You are worried about the fallout if you ask for change, what if they aren’t willing to see and address your concerns? Can you live without that person in your life?

Counseling can help you find the right balance in your relationship to feel safe and secure.

All Relationships Take Work

Being in a relationship takes effort, and it takes growth. For a relationship to have longevity, all parties involved need to be willing to put in the same level of effort.

Remember, it’s perfectly fine to collaborate with a marriage and family therapist or relationship counselor for learning new emotional tools and better communication. Utilize your current relationship to foster personal growth. If you are interested in learning more about how you can, check out our frequently asked questions, or contact us today to book an appointment!

To be as accommodating as possible for those seeking marriage and relationship counseling, Pathways Counseling Services provides:

Our Couples/Partners Counselors

Frequently Asked Questions:

How can I make an appointment?

You may do this in three ways.
You can book online anytime
Call us at 480-613-8530
Complete this contact form.

Do you offer a free consultation?

Yes, we offer a free 15-minute telephone consultation. Please call us at 480-613-8530 to schedule a consultation or complete this contact form.

Do you accept any insurance?

Our practice is a fee-for-service practice which means we do not accept insurance. If you have an insurance provider with behavioral health coverage, they may offer out-of-network coverage. If you would like to use your out-of-network benefits, we will provide you with a superbill (receipt) that you can submit to your insurance company for reimbursement.

What should I expect when I come for my sessions?

Prior to your first session, you will fill out some general information. We will you a link to complete the form(s) prior to your first session.
During the initial appointment, we will review some of your histories and we will have an opportunity to discuss the reasons you are interested in counseling and the goals you are looking to achieve from counseling.
Together during the first few sessions we will put together a treatment plan with you.

How soon should I see results from the counseling sessions?

Most patients come in for weekly appointments. As you are feeling better, you can cut back on the frequency of the sessions so you have more time to practice what you are learning.

Initial sessions are 75 minutes ongoing sessions may be 45-75 minutes or longer depending on need.

Patients who work with us report improvements in a few sessions. More difficult issues may take longer. People come to therapy for different reasons but universally people don’t initiate counseling unless they are in some type of emotional pain. Our attitude is to try to make every session count.

What kind of patients do you see?

We welcome couples, children, adolescents, teens, and individuals of diverse backgrounds, cultures, religious traditions, and lifestyles.

We will be able to work with you using a variety of tools and techniques and specialize in a variety of issues and concerns.

Is what I say confidential?

All client-therapist conversations are private and confidential. In those rare exceptions when the safety of a client or other is at risk disclosure of confidential client-therapist information takes place.

Additional Specializations