George Hartwell Christian Marriage Retreats

Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy

mississauga, toronto, Oakville, Brampton, GTA, Ontario, Canada

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What is Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy?

The working assumption of Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy is that it is healthy and sound to become emotionally attached to and dependent on your partner in much the same way that a child is on a parent for nurturing, soothing, and protection.  Does that make sense?  Do you want a partner who is a safe place to turn when you are in distress? They will be there for you - open and present.

How effective is Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy?

Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy is recognized by the American Psychological Association as empirically proven.  In research  75% of couples are successful in creating a secure and lasting love relationship.

How long does it take?

Plan on 20 to 30 sessions of Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy to feel really tuned into and connected with each other in a secure, safe and lasting bond. 

How much does it cost?  Special packages.

4 sessions of emotionally focused couple therapy - for $500 nonrefundable cash deposit. A savings of $100.00.

Note:  In June, 2008, George completed the four day externship in Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy with Dr. Sue Johnson in Ottawa, Canada.

Session by session the fee is $150 per session.  That is a 90 minute session with George and that is $150 in Canadian dollars.  Payment by cash, check or by PayPay e-mail fund request (which allows credit card payments.)

A missed session or last minute cancellation (within 24 hours) is billed as half a session or $75.00.  George reserves the right to not schedule appointments until

What happens in Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy?

    Phase One - Safety

In Phase One the focus is on safety, on de-escalating negative and destructive dialogues in order to build enotional safety.  This involves:

  • figure out what each other is really trying to say.

  • look beyong the impulsive responses to discover what are the raw nerves that are responding.
  • recognizing, naming and describing the repetative negative patterns in their relationship.

    Phase Two - Bonding

In Phase Two the patterns begin to shift as the partners turn to one another in conversation that is softer and more engaged.  Usually this involves:

  • The one is more often withdrawn accesses and expresses their desire for love and attachment and thereby breaks our of their hiding place.

  • The one who has been more focussed on the relationship - but often expressed it negatively - learns to soften their expressions and turning from blame and shame to softer expression of their attachment needs.
  • When each is engaged emotionally in a deep, soft and loving way then deeper engagement happens, real feelings of connection and love occur.

    Phase Three - Healing Relationship Wounds

In Phase Three any deeply disturbing events that have wounded the relationship and undermine bonding are healed.  Healing leads to heart felt forgiveness.  The couples learns the process of healing relationship wounds and can use this to strengthen their bond.

    Phase Four - Living Bonded

In the final phase you learn what life is like when living in a divinely inspired couple community.  Your unity enhances listening, communication and problem solving.  Stress levels are less and you are living with more calm, creative, warmth and connection.  Health improves.

  • The deeper emotional connection and good communication brings about good sex and resolves sexual relationship problems.

  • Other issues can be dealt with by the couple after practicing using unity, community and connection to solve problems with the therapist present.
  • You learn to recover from lost connections and arguements.  Repair skills are learned and used.
  • Even stressful events that ruin most marriages only serve to make your relationship stronger.

For more about Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy read Dr. Sue Johnson "Hold Me Tight" (2008)

 or see

PHONE: - (416) 234-1850

Use this link: Email George Hartwell


Retreat Information

An intensive therapeutic retreat provides six hours of therapy per day.  It can be over a weekend or during the week.  The 24 hour retreat is over 4 days of 6 hours therapy per day. 

Plan a retreat for resolving in depth individual or couple needs.  Make use of a retreat when your emotional or marital crisis is becoming more than you can handle with weekly counseling sessions.

Choose a retreat when you can not go on with the way things are.  You need to resolve things one way or another.  You want to get your issues out in the open.  You need to go deeper and resolve more than is possible in weekly therapy sessions. 

We meet in my office in the city of Mississauga.  Office address: suite #123,  1454 Dundas St. East (near Dixie Road) in Mississauga.  This is 20 minutes from the main airport in Toronto, Ontario - the Pearson International Airport (Airport code is YYZ).

Retreat Hotel Information

If you are looking for a suitable hotel near my office you can book one on Dixie Road, Mississauga, Ontario (closest to my office and public transportation) or Dixon Road, Mississauga, Ontario (near the airport).  Here are some Hotel options.

Phone - (416) 234-1850

Email George Hartwell

Christian Marriage Counselling:


counselling, marriage and family therapy, retreats or phone counseling: counselling

(416) 234-1850 for local calls in Toronto, Mississauga, Oakville or Brampton.

E-mail: e-mail G Hartwell (counselling) and (retreats)

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