Marriage/Couples Counseling

Angela S. McLean is a licensed marriage and family therapist serving the Cary/Raleigh, NC area. Her training has focused specifically on understanding relationships and helping couples build or re-build happy marriages. For your convenience, appointments can be scheduled by phone, email, or through online registration.

We specialize in helping couples build a strong foundation and a lasting, satisfying relationship by partnering with them to increase affection, intimacy, and communication skills.

What to Expect:

Marriage counseling generally begins with Angela getting to know the couple and gaining insight into the problem from each partner’s perspective.  The next 1-2 sessions consist of assessment in which Angela becomes more familiar with the couple and their problem including placing the problem in a larger context by discussing the marital/relationship and family history.  Angela always meets with the couple together and almost never sees one member of the couple alone.  This allows her to maintain a balanced therapeutic relationship with both partners in which the marriage is the client rather than either individual.  After the assessment phase, counseling continues for an average of 8-20 sessions over a period of 3 to 9 months.  When their special circumstances that complicate couples issues, couples counseling can last longer than this estimate.

Approach to Couples Counseling:

Angela McLean, LMFT  focuses on providing a relaxed atmosphere and developing a relationship with both partners so that everyone feels comfortable.  Each partner is encouraged to be open and share their perspective without judgement.  Angela is skilled at holding both partners and supporting their needs even when these seem to be completely opposite and in conflict.

Angela’s primary model for practice with couples is Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT). EFT is a well known approach to couples counseling which was developed in the 1980s by Dr. Sue Johnson.  It is based on the science of adult attachment which views people as wired for intimate bonding with others.

The focus of couples counseling using EFT is to create a secure, healthy bond between partners.  Sessions focus first on identifying and becoming aware of the current pattern of interaction that has blocked connection.  Then couples experience and practice open and bond creating communication in the sessions.  Over time the experiences in sessions of safe intimacy develops into a new pattern of secure bonding that naturally spills outside of sessions into the couples day to day interactions.  Finally, couples learn to trust their new bond and find safety in deep intimacy with their partner.

Strengths of Emotionally Focused Therapy for Couples:

  • EFT is collaborative and deeply respectful of clients.
  • Change strategies are specified and clear.  The change process has been mapped out and key change events predict success at the end of therapy.
  • EFT has been validated by over 30 years of empirical research.
  • EFT has been applied to many different kinds of problems and populations.

For more detailed information about EFT go to The International Centre for Excellence in Emotionally Focused Therapy.

Benefits of Couples Counseling:

Couples Counseling can lead to more satisfying relationships by achieving the following results:

  • Increased intimacy and affection
  • Revitalized sexual desire and passion
  • Greater understanding and closeness
  • Create a process for healing and forgiveness
  • Increased ability to resolve conflicts
  • Ability to maintain improvements in your relationship

Request an Appointment Today

(919) 868-6242


Contact Angela