Couples Counseling FAQs

Couple on sofa

Q: What’s the success rate of your Couples Counseling programs?

I use two proven research-based Couple Therapy programs: Emotionally Focused Therapy and Gottman Couple Therapy Method. Research proves these approaches help couples build (or rebuild) the bonds of love and connection. 70-75% of couples move from distress to recovery and approximately 90% show significant improvements.

Q: What happens in the beginning of Couples Counseling?

The first four sessions comprise the assessment phase. We will have an initial joint session, followed by two individual sessions, and then another joint session. I will ask you to take the online Gottman Assessment which gives an in-depth report of your relationship strengths and challenges. I will provide a summary of my assessment at the fourth meeting along with a treatment plan tailored to your specific needs. Assuming we all decide to continue with therapy, we will have joint sessions for the remainder of our time together.

The relationship is considered the client, therefore, I need to see both of you at all our therapy sessions (except for the two individual assessment sessions). If for some reason, I ask to see one of you individually, the other partner will be seen individually the next time to keep the alliance balanced between the three of us. If one of you cancels, the session will be canceled, or one of you will attend the session, and then next time, the other will come alone to the session.

Q: How long are the couples therapy visits? 

I prefer 80-minute visits because so much more can be accomplished. However, 53-55 minute sessions are also available. You may also schedule a marathon session for 2 to 4 hours, or intensive 1-3 day Private Couples Retreat to make quicker progress.

Q: What is your cancellation policy? 

Unless you can reschedule in the same week, a 48-hour cancellation notice is required to avoid a full charge for the session. Please notify me as soon as possible so I can fill your slot with another client needing help. This is especially important if you have an evening appointment because that time is in high demand. You may opt for a videoconference or a phone session if you are sick or cannot make it to the office. Thanks in advance for your conscientiousness in providing as much lead time as possible for cancellations.

Q: What if we want quick progress? Do you offer Marriage Retreats?

Lake Chatuge, Hayesville, NC

Lake Chatuge Couples Retreat Venue

Yes. I Offer Private Couples Retreats.

For the fastest progress, schedule a private couples retreat for one to three days in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Georgia. Sometimes, couples are in so much distress that weekly sessions cannot provide enough support to move beyond the suffering. Or, maybe your schedules make it difficult to get to the office weekly or bi-weekly. Or, perhaps you live out of town. I recommend you follow up your Private Couples Retreat with weekly or bi-weekly sessions until you can consistently maintain healthy progress.

Some couples are already seeing a marriage counselor. In this case, I serve as an adjunct to your current therapy, and will consult with your marriage counselor before and after your retreat.  Click here for full details on the Private Couples Retreat.

Q: How often do we meet for counseling sessions? 

To build steady momentum in the beginning, it is best to meet weekly for the first month or two. If you need to reduce the frequency after that, we can shift to every other week. If steady progress is not maintained, we need to return to weekly sessions. If your budget allows only for bi-weekly sessions, we can do that, as long as you are making progress.

Q: How many visits will be needed?

The number of counseling sessions depends on your current skill level as a couple, your challenges and how committed you are to applying what you learn between sessions. Therefore, I cannot tell you how many sessions you will need. It varies with every couple. I recommend a minimum of 12 therapy sessions to start seeing good progress. If you meet weekly, you will make faster progress. It is common for couples to be in therapy for 6-12 months, and sometimes more.

If you want to read articles or books, listen to podcasts, or watch videos, your progress will be accelerated. Everyone has a preferred learning style, so I tailor therapy to your preferences.

Click here to read my blog articles on marriage counseling.

Q: How much will couples counseling cost? 

We will discuss this when you call me.

BenitaEsposito 2013Click here to read testimonials from my couples.

Want to get started?  Please complete the Contact form, or

Call me at 770.998.6642.

Email me: You will receive a complimentary 10-minute get-acquainted phone meeting.

I look forward to hearing from you!

Warm regards,

Benita A. Esposito, MA, Licensed Professional Counselor

Flourishing Lives for S.M.A.R.T. Women and the Men Who Love Them

Couples Counseling, Marriage Counseling and Individual Psychotherapy in Atlanta (Sandy Springs) and Blairsville, GA