The Gottman Method is a type of relationship counseling developed by John and Julie Gottman. The goal of relationship counseling that applies the Gottman Method is to improve how the client’s relationship works by teaching couples how to avoid the behaviours shown by the Gottmans (and others) to damage relationships. Gottman maintains that there are four emotions (criticism, defensiveness, stonewalling, and contempt) that harm relationships. Therapists using the Gottman Method will help couples to grow closer, increase their affection for one another and help them to resolve conflicts in a healthy and positive way.
For couples on the verge of separation
This form of therapy even couples who believe they have a “normal” level of conflict within their relationship may benefit from Gottman Method Couples Therapy since it assists the partners build a stronger overall relationships as well as finding mechanisms to cope with future issues. The Gottman Method works to support couples with a variety of issues being experienced within a their relationship including a lack of communication, conflict and arguments, couples close to separation who are experiencing great emotionally distance as well as other specific problems such as sexual issues, infidelity, parenting difficulties or money issues. The four aspects and key issues identified and addressed with the Gottman method include criticism within a relationship which can be challenging for couples to break patterns, defensiveness which often reveals itself as counter-attacking as means of self protection, stonewalling which is when one or both partners withdraw from interacting and contempt which includes acts such as using threats, name calling and insulting.