Couples Counseling in Bethesda & Reston

Couples Counseling

Dr. Carlos Durana offers individual counseling as well as telephone consultations in Reston, VA., Bethesda, MD., and Washington, DC. His approach is based on a resource model of growth and healing.

Couples Therapy and Counseling

Couples Therapy, Relationship Therapy or Marriage counseling in Reston, VA, Bethesda, MD, and Washington, DC.: Relationship or couples therapy helps clients understand each other, resolve conflicts, communicate effectively, and problem solve in a healthier way in order to improve relationship satisfaction. Couples therapy can be short-term to help you move through a crisis or it may last for several months or more if the relationship has greatly deteriorated. In the event of separation or divorce, couples therapy can ease this very difficult process. Couples counseling offered by Dr. Durana in Reston, VA and Bethesda, MD focuses on problems between individuals, but these problems sometimes may also involve individual problems which may need to be addressed along with relationship conflicts. For example, someone who is depressed or anxious may also have difficulties in handling conflict. Beyond helping couples break out of negative cycles, the ultimate aim of couples counseling is to enhance intimacy, trust, satisfaction and love, and develop ways of relating that support each other’s core identities and life purposes.

Dr. Durana’s resource based approach in couples therapy emphasizes what has worked, doing more behaviors that create success, discovering strengths and resources beneath the relationship symptoms, redirecting attention to the couples’ hopes and aspirations and developing behaviors that increase relationship satisfaction and happiness.

Contact Us

4915 St. Elmo Ave.,
Suite 504 – Room 7c,
Bethesda, MD 20814
(301) 654-0100

11250 Roger Bacon Dr., Atrium #5, Suite 1A
Reston VA 20190-5205
(703) 408-4965

1625 K Street, NW, Suite 375C
Washington, DC 20006
(202) 308-3026

2265 Cedar Cove Court
Reston, VA 20191
(703) 716-0906

Dr. Carlos Durana

Carlos Durana, Ph.D., M.Ac. is a licensed clinical psychologist and counselor with over twenty five years of experience in the field of individual and couples counseling. He is also experienced in areas of complementary medicine that help enhance mindfulness, wellness, and life management. His approach is based on acceptance and regard for others; it is practical, educational, and holistic. Read More…

Is it worth going to couples counseling?

All relationships go through difficult periods; relationship problems are not necessarily an indication that the relationship has failed. Learning to deal with relationship challenges is really a sign of strength. When we want to get a driver’s license, we go through considerable training. Yet, in preparing for marriage, we receive no training. We learn our relationship skills and attitudes primarily from the modeling offered by our parents, and our culture; this is often not sufficient.

It is worth trying couples therapy before separating. Once the decision to separate is made, it is hard to turn back the clock. It is never too late to rebuild the relationship if both people are willing to work at it. Romantic love can wane over time. However, if there are still underlying currents of care and love, it is worth finding ways to rekindle the spark. Focusing on the reasons why you first came together, the shared hopes and dreams, can help strengthen the bond.

Even being unsure or ambivalent about the relationship does not mean that it is over; this can be explored and worked through in couple therapy. It is not uncommon for partners to come into couple therapy blaming each other for the difficulties; they often come in with an attitude that says to the other: “It is your fault.” Each partner needs to become aware of his or her contribution to the problems. I often say to the couples: “I can help you learn skills and understand each other more deeply, work at it, give it your best, then if you decide to separate you would have learned a great deal about yourself and how to be in a relationship; that can help you avoid future pitfalls.”

What to expect from couples therapy and counseling?

Part of the job of the couple therapist is to create a safe and supportive environment where you can hear and understand each other despite your disagreements. Two of the most important aspects of a relationship are communication, and the ability to resolve differences in a respectful, responsible, and caring way. The couple therapist should gain your trust and be a fair guide and mediator in helping you talk through your issues, he should teach you relationship skills, and help you find ways to deal with relationship challenges. If therapy is successful, you will be able to carry the learning into the future and solve your disagreements successfully without the help of the couple counselor. It is not the job of the couple therapist to be a referee, to “save” your relationship or to “fix” your partner. The couple counselor can help you find effective ways to transform self-defeating relationship behaviors and attitudes into constructive attitudes and behaviors that will help you create a more satisfying relationship. Dr. Durana offers marriage counseling and marriage therapy at his practice in Reston, VA and Bethesda MD.

To read more about relationship and intimacy issues, go to the blog section titled intimacy / relationships