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Premarital Couples Therapy

Marriage Counseling in Westchester County, NY

Every relationship has its ups and downs and it takes work to make it work. My office will provide you and your partner with the comfort and safety to navigate through the challenges your relationship is bringing you. 

The couples that I serve are desperate to make changes and need to decide if they are ready to commit to each other for the long term. They talk about marriage and are hopeful their relationship will get there, but they feel stuck with certain patterns that worry them about the future. 

I also support couples who are newly married. This is a tender time in a couple’s relationship. They have made the life-changing decision to fully commit to each other, and it can be difficult to navigate this transition in the relationship. 

So many couples begin to experience the same fights over and over again and need a neutral guide to help them identify and recognize these patterns that leave them feeling stuck.

If you and your partner are considering marriage or are newly married, I encourage you to reach out today to discuss how your relationship can benefit from my services.

Meet Justine Carino, a couples therapist in Westchester, NY

I am a licensed mental health counselor who works with premarital and newlywed couples in Westchester County, NY. I have specialized training in the Gottman Method, a form of couples therapy that uses specialized techniques to help couples strengthen their relationship.

When I meet with couples, I give them my full attention and care. I pride myself in the strong therapeutic relationships I create with my clients. I believe this is the foundation that underlies helpful, meaningful couples therapy.

Learn more about my approach and services below.

My approach to couples therapy in Westchester, NY

I recognize that each couple has its own unique challenges--and strengths. It’s my goal to help you and your partner gain insight into your thoughts, feelings, and behavior patterns. This will help you both gain a deeper understanding of each other and your goals for the relationship.

Many couples feel awkward with the idea of speaking to a stranger about their relationship. However, I strive to create a safe space for premarital and newlywed couples to fully express themselves. My interactive style will make you feel like you’re talking to a friend, while my training and experience will provide you with the expertise you need to process all elements of your relationship.

Please feel free to reach out and see if our work together may be the right fit to help you gain clarity about the crossroads you find yourself at in the relationship.

Marriage counseling in Westchester for premarital couples

Marriage is a serious commitment. Before you decide whether to take the next step with your relationship, it’s important to make sure that you and your partner are clear about your needs, wants, and expectations for a marriage.

Couples therapy is the perfect venue for this. Having an outside perspective on your dynamic can help you gain clarity that may be otherwise difficult to find. 

Each couple is unique, and I see premarital couples for many different reasons. With that being said, I can help premarital couples that are struggling with:

  • Resolving conflicts and are frequently fighting with each other
  • Feel that their conflicts escalate quickly
  • Unsure whether or not they want to commit to each other long term
  • Are having difficulty with trust and lack of security
  • Need guidance on how to set boundaries with family members and friends

Upon completion of treatment, couples begin to learn how to resolve conflict more effectively with one another, understand what their next step is in the relationship, and create more friendship, trust and intimacy with each other. 

Marriage counseling in Westchester, NY for newlywed couples

Congratulations on taking the next step in your relationship!

At first thought, couples counseling for newlyweds could seem counterintuitive to some people. After all, isn’t the newlywed phase a time of love, happiness, and bliss?

Well, not always. And even if it is, it’s not realistic to think that your marriage will always be this way.

Even if you’re not experiencing any big, pressing issues right now, it can be beneficial to start newlywed counseling to lay the groundwork for your future together. Therapy can help couples improve their communication and get clear about expectations for the marriage.

If you are experiencing issues in your relationship, there’s no reason to be ashamed--no relationship is perfect. Marriage counseling can also help newlyweds process existing challenges, leaving couples feeling more equipped to handle future issues. 

Therapy also provides couples with a safe, neutral space to speak openly about their issues. After all, part of any strong relationship is good communication. Therapy provides a venue to learn new communication techniques. You and your partner can practice those skills and get feedback in real time. 

We won’t focus solely on your problems in therapy. I’m also interested in hearing about your relationship’s strengths and the things you love about each other. We will use these elements to our advantage during our work together. 

FAQs about premarital and newlywed marriage counseling in Westchester County, NY

What is the couples counseling process like?

I work with each couple to tailor treatment to their specific needs and preferences. With that being said, the general process is basically the same for each couple. I am trained in the Gottman Method, which provides a specific framework for couples therapy.

The first session is an assessment with both members of the relationship. Afterwards, I will schedule a session with each individual. Couples will also complete questionnaires to provide further information about their relationship.

We will then come together to determine how often we will meet and the length of treatment. From there, we will start our regular sessions. We will decide what to work on in session based on your unique needs. 

What kinds of things will we discuss in marriage counseling?

It is difficult to say exactly what we will discuss in marriage counseling because each relationship is unique. Our conversations will depend on what kinds of issues (and strengths!) you and your partner have. 

However, there are many common themes that come up with the couples I work with. Some of these may resonate with you and your spouse or spouse-to-be, and others may not. We will work together to determine how to best use our time together.

  • Communication and conflict resolution -- Nearly all couples could benefit from working on communication skills. Together, we will figure out what is working well and where you both could improve in order to feel more connected and heard. We will also explore how to best settle disagreements, as they are inevitable.
  • Clarify expectations and goals -- This is important for any relationship, but it is especially crucial for premarital and newlywed couples. In order to start your marriage off strong, you both need to be on the same page for what you expect from each other and the relationship. Any disconnect here is bound to cause issues later on.
  • Family of origin issues -- Processing through your own family issues before building a family of your own is key. We are all affected by the families we grew up in, and those experiences shape our worldview. Therapy can help you process through any lingering issues and explore how the family you were born into impacts the family you are creating.

Will couples therapy save our relationship?

It certainly can. However, there is no guarantee around the outcome of couples counseling.

Couples therapy, especially for premarital and newlywed couples, can be a powerful tool for relationships. It helps both individuals gain insight about themselves and their partner. It also helps facilitate communication between both partners.

For some people, this brings them closer. It helps them realize that their goals, values, and expectations align, and that they truly want to make the relationship work.

For other couples, this brings the realization that they would be happier outside of the relationship. And that’s okay too.

Couples counseling is not a band-aid for a problem, but it is a venue for couples to explore themselves and their partner to determine what is best for them. 

With that being said, the fact that you are looking for a couples therapist shows that you want to make things work. I find that many couples I work with want to strengthen their relationship and successfully do this by becoming fully invested in treatment. 

How is couples therapy different than just talking to a friend?

It’s important to have trusted friends you can turn to. We all need that kind of support in life and in our relationships.

However, therapy is more than just talking about problems. Therapists use their education and training to help you process issues, identify patterns, and learn new skills. Therapists also use specialized techniques and interventions to guide you, help you gain insight, and gently challenge you.

Ready to take the next step toward couples counseling?

I’m here to help premarital and newlywed couples navigate challenges, improve communication, and build conflict resolution skills. Reach out today to discuss your situation and determine whether we’ll be a good fit for each other.

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