Marriage 2017-08-16T05:28:54+00:00

Counseling for Couples in a Committed Relationship in Vancouver, WA and the Portland-metro area

Marriage Counseling

Couples Counseling or Marriage Counseling offers a valuable opportunity for couples to learn effective ways to communicate, establish or renew boundaries, learn ways to engage in healthy conflict, and have a safe space to improve or prioritize your relationship. Every couple has moments when they start to fight more, feel angry, harbor resentment, or even feel withdrawn from their partner they were once so connected with.

Let’s be honest, being in a relationship is hard. It isn’t uncommon to experience challenges, and when they arise, it can be really difficult to decide what the next step is. In couples counseling we see our role as a relationship/marriage counselor to sit with you, where you are in the moment and help guide the way in mending the broken pieces of your relationship.

It can be difficult to manage intimate relationship problems on your own, whether those problems are sexual issues, infidelity, betrayal, parenting issues, or everyday arguments. We can help.

Clients who engage in couples counseling at Compass can expect to utilize a variety of tools to improve communication and emotional connection. Our focus is to make a safe space for you and your partner to openly discuss obstacles within your relationship, resentments that have built, and other areas of growth that allow you to grow as a couple and individually. Several of our therapists provide Gottman Method Couples Counseling and utilize the tools and techniques from Gottman Method in sessions.

Does Marriage Counseling Work?

On average couples wait 6 years to seek therapy from the time they begin having significant relationship problems. Working on strengthening your relationship before significant problems arise is the best recipe for a healthy, long-term relationship. Couples Counseling can help!

If you feel as though you are spinning your wheels and struggling to make your relationship work, you are not alone. It’s completely normal to feel a loss of connection with your partner as the newness of a relationship wears off. As you grow and mature as a couple, each of you settles back in to who you were as an individual before you met.

Common Reasons Couples Seek Counseling

  • Improve Communication
  • Learn Conflict Management
  • Infidelity/Affair
  • Differing Parenting Skills
  • Intimacy Issues in the Bedroom
  • Roommates vs. Lovers
  • Major Life Changes
  • Premarital Counseling

Frequently Asked Questions

Have questions? Compass wants the therapeutic process to be transparent, so that you know what to expect, and that you feel comfortable. We understand that talking to someone new can bring up feelings of fear and uncertainty for some, so we hope that these questions ease those feelings and bring a certain level of readiness and comfort to seeking help with any one of our therapists at Compass Whole Health.  Check out some of the frequently asked questions in the list below.

If your question isn’t answered here, give us a call at 360-828-5350.


Our current regular fees are as follows. Payment for each session is due at the time of your session. Our office accepts cash, checks and all major credit cards (including HSA). Please make your checks payable to Compass Community Counseling, LLC.

  • $130 per 60-minute couple counseling session
  • Full Session Fee for No Show/Late Cancel (outside of 24 hours)
  • $25 Returned Check Fee

Couples therapy is an investment in your relationship. How important is it to you to have a healthy relationship with your partner? What is it worth to you?

Think of it this way. You may save up a couple thousand dollars to go on an awesome vacation with your partner. Sure, it’s a beautiful place, you have some delicious meals, and your hotel is quite nice. But if your relationship is suffering, your vacation may not be all that you dreamed it would be. Just because you are on vacation does not mean that the negativity and distance within your relationship stays at home.

Additionally, a bad relationship can have negative impacts on both your health and your wallet. Toxic relationships have been shown to shorten your lifespan and are responsible for deteriorating your physical and mental health. Not only is dealing with health concerns expensive, divorce averages $15,000 and adds the expense of maintaining separate households.

If you are seeking couples therapy and you are unsure of the financial commitment, feel free to give us a call anyway. We can provide referrals to other therapists in the area who accept insurance. And, depending upon your current need, we can discuss other resources such as workshops and books that may be helpful as you decide your readiness for couples therapy.

You are probably anticipating the answer “it depends” – and you would be correct. It is impossible to predict the total number of sessions needed, as each couple is unique and the number of sessions will vary.

Some couples will attend as few as 12 sessions, while other couples may attend 20 or more sessions to achieve the changes needed to maintain lasting relationship satisfaction. Pre-commitment therapy, or pre-marital counseling, usually calls for fewer sessions, maybe 4 to 5.

Furthermore, some couples will complete their initial run of sessions and go on their way. Others will stay connected with their therapist and schedule occasional refresher sessions or check-ins to ensure that they are maintaining the positive growth they worked so hard to achieve.

Often we recommend weekly or bi-weekly 60 minute sessions at the start of counseling to help build needed trust and comfort in the counseling relationship. Weekly appointments may also facilitate more active progress toward goals. As progress toward initial goals are made, it may be helpful to spread the sessions further apart. We will discuss what is right for you as we work together.

Our address is 613 E McLoughlin Blvd. Vancouver, WA 98663

Directions From I5 Northbound

  1. Take Exit 1C, (City Center/Mill Plain Blvd). Left at the light (Mill Plain)
  2. East on Mill Plain, turn left at the second light (Ft. Vancouver Way)
  3. Proceed one block. Turn left at the light (McLoughlin Blvd).
  4. Travel west approximately 1/4 of a mile.
  5. 613 E. McLoughlin is on the south side.

Directions From I5 Southbound

  1. Take Exit 1C, (Mill Plain Blvd). Stay right, merge onto Mill Plain eastbound,
  2. East on Mill Plain, turn left at the second light (Ft. Vancouver Way)
  3. Proceed one block. Turn left at the light (McLoughlin Blvd).
  4. Travel west approximately 1/4 of a mile.
  5. 613 E. McLoughlin is on the south side.

Please enter through the North front door of the building. Because we are a small private practice we do not have a receptionist for check-in, we complete this process ourselves.

Parking: Unmetered street parking is available in front of our offices at all hours. We are located just west of Clark College and the Marshall Center, just minutes from I-5.

ADA Accessible: We are an ADA accessible office. If special accommodations are necessary, please do not hesitate to ask when you are scheduling your consult.

Private practices typically don’t have set hours. Our therapists work by appointment only, and each therapist sets their schedule. If you need a particular time frame or day of the week, contact us to discuss this.

Do your research. Review online directories, such as Psychology Today, to compare different therapists in your area and search by specialties. Check out the therapist’s website, paying special attention to see if their message resonates with you.

Many therapists offer services to couples; however, not all have completed their education and training in couples issues. Ask if they have had courses in couples therapy, or if they have received supervision from someone who was an experienced couples therapist.

Looking for the type of license that a potential therapist holds can be important. Having a license as a Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) indicates that the practitioner has completed coursework specific to couples and understands how to effectively work with the delicate nature of intimate partner relationships.

Look for additional trainings and certifications that the therapist has completed, paying close attention to those trainings and certifications that are specific to the couple relationship and are founded on research.

And last, but certainly not least, you should feel comfortable with the therapist. Research indicates that the most important factor contributing to the success of therapy is the relationship between the therapist and their clients. This means that the relationship you have with your therapist is more important than the therapists’ education and training, more important than the model of therapy the therapist uses, and even more important than the years of experience of the therapist.

Most therapists will offer an initial phone consultation. Take advantage of this opportunity to connect with potential therapists. You should be able to determine if you would feel comfortable working with the therapist within the first few minutes of the conversation.

Click here to schedule a FREE 15 minute phone consultation to determine if we are a good fit. If the available times do not work with your schedule, call or *text 360.828.5350, or *email us at info@compasswholehealth.com, to request another time for your consultation.

This phone conversation will give us a chance to interview each other – but not in the anxiety provoking interview way. This will be more of a getting-to-know you talk. We want to ensure that you are getting exactly what you need for your relationship.

Please note that as therapists’ most of our days are spent having uninterrupted time with clients; therefore, we are not always immediately available. We encourage you to leave a message and we will return your call at our earliest convenience.

*Note that text and email are not secure methods of communication. Please reserve text and email communication for scheduling a time for consultation only. We can discuss the details of your particular situation during our phone consultation.

We do not accept insurance. Couples Therapy and Family Therapy in its pure form, which is what we practice, is not covered by insurance. The purpose of insurance is for the diagnosis and treatment of a mental illness. Insurance companies do not recognize relationship concerns as a mental illness; therefore, our relationship therapy services are not reimbursable. Insurance companies get to decide how many sessions you are allowed to see a therapist and they dictate the services that we can provide. Insurance companies also require a diagnosis, which becomes part of your permanent medical record and can disqualify you from certain careers.

Having a private pay therapist means that you will have more control over your treatment. You will not receive a mental health diagnosis and your session notes will not be submitted to an outside third party. We will be able to freely work together in a way that honors your unique situation and we can tailor our approach to best fit your needs.

Our approach to couples therapy is more organized than most and utilizes a variety of therapy models to best suit our client’s needs’. We feel strongly in not just sitting back and listening to your “problem” but being an active participant in making positive change happen by offering suggestions, recommendations, and feedback throughout our session.

When you work with one of our therapists’ you are investing in a therapist who has specific training and education in intimate partner relationships. You can count on our therapists to be nonjudgmental, genuine, and responsive.

We only see a limited number of clients in our practice so you can expect to receive the utmost care and consideration in regards to your relationship needs.

Seeing a carefully selected number of clients allows us to devote time to understanding your specific relationship outside of our sessions together. We will have ample time to review notes, tailor our approaches and interventions to your specific needs, and keep up to date on the latest developments in the field.

Couples therapy sessions are 60 minutes, allowing time for deep and meaningful relationship work to take place. We do not book clients back-to-back so you will receive the attention that you deserve and you will not experience the sense of being rushed.

You may always call your therapist to cancel or reschedule an appointment. Our office policy is that all cancellations and reschedules must be 24 hours before the scheduled appointment to avoid a fee. Late cancellations and no shows are charged the full rate fee.

Couples Counseling Services

If you have any other questions, please contact us

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