My Networker Login   |   
feed-60facebook-60twitter-60linkedin-60youtube-60
 
avatar

NP006 Couples Therapy: Today and Tomorrow

This blog focuses on discussion regarding the course, NP006 Couples Therapy: Today and Tomorrow
 
 

NP006, Couples, Session 2, Terry Real

 

Welcome to the second session in Couples Therapy Today and Tomorrow—“The New Rules of 21st-Century Marriage: Toughness, Truth, and Tenderness” with relationship and gender expert Terry Real.

In this session, he’ll discuss how to help couples develop the skills necessary to achieve the high level of connection and emotional intimacy that many desire. He’ll go over how to deal with the differences between what men and women bring to relationships, how to identify that strategies that disrupt relationships, how to present blunt truths, and much more.

We encourage you to use the Comment Board as a way to engage with each other and the presenters in this course, to share what you felt was most interesting, to ask any questions you may have, and to reflect on what you’ve learned. What was most relevant for you in this session with Terry Real?


06.13.2011   Posted In: NP006 Couples Therapy: Today and Tomorrow   By Psychotherapy Networker
46
Comments
 

  • 0 avatar Colleen Russell 06.16.2011 13:13
    Terry's presentation underscored for me the need to educate and teach positive, workable skills to partners, allign with the shame, meek partner, clarify and bring to awareness the dominant/grandiose partner's destructiveness of what both want and need in their relationship. The first session is about two hours long, I understand. What is the length of the other sessions?
    Reply
  • Not available avatar Lois Muir-McClain, LPC 06.16.2011 13:14
    I Real-y (get it?) enjoyed the session. I have Terry's book also. I like the part where he discussed the 5 Losing vs the 5 Winning Strategies and the Adaptive Child vs the Functional Adult. These are helpful conceptualizations that I can use with my clients, teaching them to use their 2nd consciousness.

    My question is regarding the grandiose partner or latent vs blatant. I find that some people appear to be victims while they are victimizing, or are "latent blatants." What are some more ways of detecting who is the blatant? Also, I am seeing more women who are coming across as blatant or grandiose. I sometimes get confused when so much information comes out during that 1 session or so. Also I see many men who are doing the initial calling because they can't get their wife to come in for therapy. She's usually very angry by that point and already has one foot out the door.
    Reply
    • Not available avatar TERRY REAL 06.20.2011 17:40
      1 - PEOPLE "OFFEND FROM THE VICTIM POSITION" PIA MELLODY. THEY TAKE AN ANGRY VICTIM STANCE BUT THE STANCE ONE ADOPTS IS NOT WHAT I'M TALKING ABOUT - IM TALKING ABOUT THE STATE YOU'RE IN.
      2- WE TEACH SEVERAL CLASSES ON GRANDIOSE WOMEN - A LOT TO SAY THERE. TOO MUCH FOR THIS LITTLE SPACE.
      Reply
  • 0 avatar David Markham 06.16.2011 13:46
    Great presentation!

    What stood out for me is the idea of eschewing the development of a warm fuzzy alliance with the use of leverage. The trick as is made clear later in the presentation is to use the leverage and still maintain a degree of engagement.

    The other thought I had was how the use of the term "grandiosity" might be compared to Nagy's idea of "entitlement"? A lot of partners seem to have a sense of entitlement but I wouldn't necessarily compare their sense of entitlement as being grandiose although there are certain partners who have a grandiose sense of entitlement.

    I wonder if Mr. Real could comment on entitlement and how, if at all, this element is dealt with in his RLT?

    Thanks for a great presentation,

    David Markham, L.C.S.W. - R
    Brockport, NY
    Reply
    • Not available avatar TERRY REAL 06.20.2011 17:42
      NAGY'S "DESTRUCTIVE ENTITLEMENT" IS INDEED AKIN TO GRANDIOSITY - OR AN ASPECT OF IT. THERE IS ALSO "HEALTHY ENTITLEMENT" - WHICH SHOULD BE SELF-EXPLANATORY - LIKE, THE ENTITLEMENT TO LIVE AND BE HEALTHY
      Reply
  • Not available avatar Carol Ottogalli, LPC 06.17.2011 15:45
    Lovd the presentation! However, the audio for Terry was fuzzy. I missed part of what was said due to the poor audio quality. RLT has a 2-hour initial session. Unless I missed it, I don't know how you would bill for that. Can you offer assistance with the way to navigate billing for this.
    Reply
    • Not available avatar TERRY REAL 06.20.2011 17:46
      YES. BECAUSE WE SEE THE THERAPY AS DELVING INTO DEEP INDIVIDUAL CHARACTER WORK, WE HAVE NO QUALMS BILLING TWO INDIVIDUAL SESSIONS - WITH EACH PARTNER AS WITNESS TO THE OTHER'S WORK. HOW STRICTLY KOSHER THAT IS, DON'T KNOW. HAVEN'T BEEN CHALLENGED ON IT YET, ALTHOUGH SOME RLT THERAPISTS HAVE HAD TO EXPLAIN IT.
      Reply
  • Not available avatar Niquie Dworkin 06.17.2011 20:04
    Great clear description of the child and adult states, reminiscent of Fonagy's mentalization.
    Reply
  • Not available avatar David Thompson 06.18.2011 14:28
    I love how Terry addresses the ways of engaging both the latent and blatent clients and how our natural empathy is not particularly useful with the blatent. I too have a question about billing a 2 hour session.
    Reply
  • Not available avatar Carol Kelly 06.18.2011 14:35
    Terry was great in more ways than I have time to mention. But I kept wanting to put duct tape over Rick's mouth. We don't need a running lengthy and jerky commentary about what Terry so eloquently expressed.
    Reply
  • Not available avatar Julie B 06.18.2011 15:24
    I especially like the focus on character being changeable. It often makes couple's feel hopeless if the process of therapy does not include a framework that allows for and expects change. I appreciated this webinar and am grateful to Terry Real and Rich Simon for sharing.
    Reply
  • Not available avatar Claudie Harris 06.18.2011 18:24
    In spite of the poor sound quality for Terry's voice, this second session was loaded with great insights and advice. I took so many notes because it all sounded much too good not to jot down, but I just know I will buy Terry's book on 21st century marriage because he sounds so darn knowledgeable and effective. I too agree that Rick does talk too much, although some of his questions are excellent. Ideally, he should speak 75% less,or pack his words with 75% more useful content. Thanks for this wonderful webinar. I enjoyed Session #1 as well.
    Reply
  • Not available avatar jennytozer 06.19.2011 07:11
    In an attempt at 'loving truth telling' here goes! Thank you to Terry. Loved the winning and loosing strategies and asking couples to come up with a similar profile. Also using a photograph to challenge the shouting that harms the children. Whilst leverage is crucial I wouldn't want to neglect the therapeutic alliance in any of this work without which many aspects could potentially become more difficult or fail altogether. I would be interested to know more about the men and women that Terry feels that he cannot work with and passes on to his female colleagues. Why might this be? I might be confused here as sound quality difficult at times..I saw some of the adaptive child aspects as being more mal-adaptive although I recognise that, for example, the child within us invites certainty in when there is too much uncertainty. Good to have some clarification here please. Thank you. I liked how Rich summarised aspects and I disagree that he 'talks too much' I think he has got it about right - he used clarifying questions and summarised well. Thank you to both..
    Jenny..
    Reply
    • Not available avatar TERRY REAL 06.20.2011 17:50
      LOTTA QUESTIONS HERE. LET ME PICK ONE - "JOINING THROUGH THE TRUTH" IS OUR VERSION OF A THERAPEUTIC ALLIANCE. IT IS THE ESSENCE OF RLT - BUT LEVERAGE COMES FIRST.
      Reply
    • 0 avatar B. Jill Balagur-Conn 06.19.2011 15:14
      I have been a devotee every since I attended one of Terry's full day workshops at a Networker conference many years ago. Freed from old models by use of one question suggested by Terry, "what gets in the way of giving her/him what s/he wants?", I have been one of those say it like it is "closet" couples counselor. Thank you Terry for this webinar as it takes me further in conceptualizing and framing my approaches. It will be interesting to challenge the "macho" males, however how would you recommend we deal with other cultures where men are expected to be one-up?
      Reply
      • Not available avatar TERRY REAL 06.20.2011 17:59
        A HIGH FLYING GRADUATE OF L'ECOLE POLYTECHNIQUE TOLD ME HE WAS NARCISSISTIC - I WONDERED IF HE WAS JUST A CERTAIN TYPE OF PARISIAN (JUST KIDDING)
        MACHO MEN HAVE ALREADY BROKEN WITH TRADITION BY SEEING A THERAPIST. THE OLD DAYS ARE OVER - THAY NEED TO ADAPT TO TODAY.
        Reply
    • Not available avatar M L Lathrop LMSW, BCD 06.19.2011 16:00
      This webinar was the one I was waiting for. I have heard Terry a number of times and incorporated something into my own practice with couples after each presentation. This webinar helped particularly in defining the adaptive child characteristics as they are manifest in the grandiose position. What a framework for explaining how it is not the 'fault' of the grandiose partner. Fantastic clarity for me. Your description of the grandiose partner and the latent's response as needing to 'put her foot down, so to speak, and to specify what she wants, how she wants it and what the outcome will be has been very helpful in my work with women. Not as a threat, but as as clarity so her partner knows specifically what he can do to change which will be most effective. Thanks, Terry!
      Reply
    • Not available avatar Steve Milan 06.19.2011 17:39
      I have appreciated Terry's perspective on couples therapy since I read "How Can I Get Through To You?" some years ago. That book affected my work with men and couples, and prompted an organic shift toward seeing more men. This session filled in some of the foundation beneath techniques I have been using since then. I appreciate the explanation of latent and blatant roles, as well as the focus on grandiosity. I have found that, given enough safety, many men can find and acknowledge the vulnerable parts which underly that grandiosity. My awareness of these parts is what makes it possible for this work to be done with the love which Terry reminds us is an essential part of the process. Thank you very much to PN and to Terry.
      Reply
    • Not available avatar Tracy Krause 06.19.2011 18:36
      A great presentation. The relationship grid hit home for me, both as a therapist and in relationships outside of marriage. The specifics for helping both latents and blatants were very helpful. I especially liked the response to "it comes on so fast I can't help it." It really make the point. My guess is that could be used for other "uncontrollable" behavior,as well. Another excellent PN presentation! Thank you all.
      Reply
      • 0 avatar Barbara Wahler 06.20.2011 14:10
        I have to second this - I've had many people (in the office and out) who fall back on "that's how I am" or "it comes on so fast, I can't help it". I appreciate the suggestion for how to deal with this; it cuts to the heart of the matter, as I see it. That is, "Is this really how you want to behave? Because it's essentially what you are doing..." Thanks!
        Reply
    • Not available avatar Rocio Mora 06.20.2011 00:48
      I enjoyed the presentation and especially the concept of grandiosity and externalization of it. I hope next presentation has a better quality of sound since I think all of these concepts could be very useful and dont want to miss a thing. I appreciate Rich comments as well, in fact I got a better sound quality when he talked and it was helpful to hear his summaries and questions. Thanks a lot!
      Reply
    • Not available avatar Chris Loeffler 06.20.2011 10:23
      I've loved Terry's material and approach since 1997 when 1st read his "I don't want to talk about it" while working with DV and DOC offenders. To me, so much male depression is about not knowing how to relate or ask for deep felt needs but vulnerability is a major roadblock. Terry shows how to move through it. To not address male grandiosity - and now women's on the increase as well - is to collude with this rampant non-relational, competitive strain in our culture. Down to earth lovin' truth make for an engaging way to get all our needs met, both the couples' and the therapist yearning to tell it like it is but as a teacher-coach and fellow traveler. Thanks for a stimulating exchange.
      Reply
    • 0 avatar Stephanie Bates 06.20.2011 14:16
      Heard Terry in person discuss his book on "I don't want to talk about it: The secret legacy of male depression" and have been a fan of his straight talking approach ever since. I can see now it is time for me to catch up with his couples work and RLT. He is dynamic live presenter. The camera angle and audio did not do him justice. But still, the content was wonderful, and I took notes. I can use this material right away.
      --Stephanie Bates, LCSW
      Reply
    • 0 avatar Barbara Wahler 06.20.2011 14:18
      I got a lot out of this - including a lot of affirmation of what I've been doing myself "covertly"! However, I had an initial negative reaction to the traditional male/female stereotyping. I understand that the majority of couples may present in the manner Terry described, but it still bothered me. I found using the Blatant/Latent language much more helpful (and that's what I wrote in my notes). I also would have liked to hear more about less traditional couples - people of color, different cultural expectations, GLBT couples, etc. However, I know it was only an hour!
      All that said, I really appreciate what Terry had to say and will definitely explore the website. I hope that, given more time and/or a different format (articles, books) working with diverse couples would also be addressed. Thanks for the encouragement!
      Reply
      • Not available avatar TERRY REAL 06.20.2011 18:06
        GOOD COMMENT - AND YES ITS A TIME ISSUE. WE ARE INTERESTED IN ISSUES OF DIVERSITY - GENDER, OBVIOUSLY, BUT ALSO RACE, CULTURAL BACKGROUND, SEXUAL ORIENTATION...
        Reply
    • Not available avatar Diane Lindner 06.20.2011 16:31
      I thought this was a comprehensive and inspiring session. At the risk, however, of being considered "simple," it would have been a real gift to have had printable access to Terry's slides, instead of having to take so many notes.
      Reply
    • Not available avatar Terry Real 06.20.2011 17:33
      I want to thank everyone for their enthusiasm and kind words! Totally made my day. I will try taking a few questions as time allows. I'll start commenting from the top and work my way down.
      Reply
    • Not available avatar leticia tayabas 06.20.2011 21:04
      Thank you Terry, and thank you Rich for your clarifying questions, it has been really eye´-opening, specially the part of empowering the latent partner, in my culture this is very needed, and so not acomplished in "traditionally therapeutic modes", many therapists are "scared to death" to confront outrageous behavior, specially in men, but also in women, Bravo keep the good work!
      Reply
    • Not available avatar Chris Garwood 06.20.2011 22:17
      What a breath of fresh air, Terry! I haven't done couples work in years, but have been listening in on this series to keep up some of the theoretical changes.(Thanks also to Wm Doerty as well--great presentation). I work largely with addicted/codep/trauma clients, and often find that when I refer them out to traditional marital therapists, the couple spins their wheels and eventually ends treatment with no or little change. My clients return hopeless. Worse, they are often written off by their marital therapists as "difficult clients". Thanks to you, I can now put into words why traditional treatment hasn't worked for these folks. I would have no hesitation referring to someone trained in your method. Your model dovetails beautifully with what they are learning in recovery and ind. Great takeaways for me were the grid of grandiousity/ shame/boundaries, (reminds me of Fossum & Fossum's grid on shame) and the intervention with mom using the kids' pictures. Did a lot of experiential group work in the past and would love to see you work live with couples. I might even rethink doing couples work.
      Reply
    • Not available avatar Kathy Hardie-Williams 06.21.2011 04:07
      I found the session with Terry to be extremely informative and valuable. What stood out the most for me is the fact that I have the good fortune of being supervised by an experienced LMFT who implements a therapy style very similar to Terry's, although I've never heard of an official 'name' for the technique (Relational Life Therapy). It was very affirming to hear Terry validate what I am being taught per my supervisor and have been learning to use with my own clients, as the technique definitely 'grabs the frontal lobe', as my supervisor would say. For the most part, I have found clients to respond positively to this technique; there are a few, of course, whose ego won't stand for it. I think for this technique to be most effective, the therapist has to be authentically comfortable 'in their own skin', which is also to say that therapists have to find 'their niche' in using this technique. I especially found the comment regarding that the objective for the therapist isn't to make the client 'like you', it's to persuade them that it's in their best interest to return for therapy. Great webinar!!!

      A question I have for Terry is: What do you say to a couple in which the 'ragant' (sp?) refuses to acknowledge and/or is unwilling to take responsibility for their portion of the 'dance' that takes place between the couple?
      Reply
      • 0 avatar Barbara Wahler 06.21.2011 09:26
        If I can interject here... What I got from Terry's seminar is that the therapist supports the latent (or non-rager) when s/he states what the blatant/rager is doing and how it affects her/him. Basically, it seems that the therapists asks the rager (not in these words!) "How is that working for you?" and it comes back to the negative consequences for the behavior. Doesn't matter whether the person overtly admits responsibility or not... s/he just needs to realize that if the situation doesn't change, the relationship may end.
        Reply
    • Not available avatar MaryCay Johns, LMFT 06.21.2011 09:29
      This presentation demonstrated how the therapist worked with the inequalities v. the equalities in a marital couple. I enjoyed the wealth of information presented and
      as a semi-retired practioner appreciate the opportunity to see it after its original presentation.
      Reply
    • 0 avatar Lois Muir-McClain 06.21.2011 10:36
      I was actually able to use the technique with a couple last week. He is a bit narcissistic, and does not see the impact of his behavior on her. After hearing them both, and seeing how devastated she feels, I addressed his behavior, telling him that from the outside, his behavior looks like "stalking." That was eye-opening for him, he had never looked at it that way. I also talked with him about how he would need to change the way he deals with her if he wants the relationship to move forward. He agreed to some terms that we needed to set into place to ensure her need for emotional safety.
      Reply
    • Not available avatar Jay Schlechter 06.21.2011 14:50
      A startling but clear presentation. Thanks for providing useful concepts and interventions. They are intriguing, thought-provoking and memorable.
      Reply
    • 0 avatar Martha Smith 06.21.2011 16:14
      Very helpful information and the visuals helped make it more clear. I have struggled with the blatant partner and how to help bring awareness to their behavior in the traditional way. Now, I am relieved to see there is a more effective way.
      Reply
      • Not available avatar JEANNE ECKRICH 06.25.2011 08:27
        AS A LONG TIME FAN OF TERRY REAL IT IS A TREAT TO HEAR HIM WITHOUT DRIVING TO BOSTON. I HAVE OFTEN QUOTED '" YOU CAN BE RIGHT OR OU CAN BE MARRIED ". I AM AN MFT AND SEE LOT'S OF COUPLES, BUT AM CONCERNED ABOUT SEEMING GRANDIOSE WHEN I CONFRONT THE BLATANT. YOU HAVE A STYLE THAT ALLOWS FOR MORE THAN I FEEL I COULD GET AWAY WITH SUCH AS "YOU ARE SHOOTING YOURSELF IN THE FOOT. WHY DON'T YOU GIVE ME THE GUN?"
        Reply
    • 0 avatar Anne-Marie Davis 06.24.2011 22:16
      Very disappointed with the sound quality. Battled to hear Terry most of the time.
      Reply
    • 0 avatar Ewa Nei Maddox 07.11.2011 06:00
      Certainly thought provoking although at times a bit simplistic, perhaps due to extremely limited format (1 hour to present one's life work - really!) However, I did not appreciate Terry's highly dismissive tone when talking about other approaches to couples therapy (a touch of grandiosity, perhaps?) nor the fact that almost every single time Rich spoke, Terry broke in before the guy had finished. Granted, Rich's tendency to phrase and rephrase each question in a long-winded, meandering way is sometimes difficult to bear (and takes away from valuable perspective he brings in)... but this constant interrupting made me a bit uneasy since the whole approach trumpets mutual empowerment. So, what about mutual respect? Do as I say, not as I do?
      Reply
    • 0 avatar Merrilee Gibson 07.13.2011 12:34
      I am coming late to hearing this session. Very much appreciated the ideas and techniques about relational mindfulness. I use mindfulness in my practice and this presentation has provided new tools. I see these ideas as being effective beyond couples therapy to family therapy, parent-child therapy. I particularly liked the example of having the person dialogue with their children's pictures about the effects of their indiscriminate sounding off. Thank you so much for very useable ideas.
      One comment--I see many remarks about poor sound quality for Terry--I am baffled by that. I had no difficulty hearing/understanding what he was saying.
      One more comment about Rich's contributions. I understand his role as moderator, and appreciate that, but I do find that his clarifications are sometimes intrusive and go on too long. We actually do get it; we don't always need a translator to understand what is being said. So--more presenter, less Rich, please.
      Reply
    • 0 avatar najwa aref 10.23.2011 11:21
      its very interesting but I think it will not work with couples in the middle east .. I am going to try some steps on my next couples
      Reply
    • Not available avatar Mary Sand 12.27.2011 18:59
      Very helpful! Thank you.
      Reply
    • Not available avatar Phil Thomas 07.10.2013 11:55
      My wife and I have been watching this show. It is really funny and emotional to watch what all the couples go through, and how we can relate. We first found this show while staying at a Markham hotel!
      Reply
I do blog this IDoBlog Community