What is EFT?
EFT stands for Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy (don't ask me why it's Couple and not Couples, I wish it were different, too). EFT was founded by Dr. Sue Johnson, and it has been extremely well researched and validated. EFT looks at everything through an attachment lens, which basically means: your partner is extremely important to you and essential to your life harmony. That's why it is so incredibly distressing when you can't reach them, or hear you've let them down again.
The book for clients to understand this approach better is "Hold Me Tight" by Dr. Sue Johnson.
EFT does a few things really differently than other couples therapy models:
1) EFT validates and extensively wants to understand both partners. Unlike a coach, who will come in and say, "you're the bad one, you need to stop this right now," EFT comes in and says, "What causes you to say or do that? What are you feeling inside when that happens? What are you thinking right before you say or do x, y, or z?" EFT wants to understand what motivates the distressing or unhelpful behavior.
Instead of seeing one partner as lazy and stupid, and the other as a nagging, critical shrew, it says: You are feeling a lot of things in these tough moments and you each have very different ways of handling those feelings. Let's learn more about this for each of you.
2) EFT looks at what happens between you as a cycle. The cycle is no one's fault. The cycle takes off, regardless of who triggers it, and it drives you each apart. One might get louder, another might blow up and then shut down. Yet another just freezes and disappears altogether. EFT helps you understand what your cycle is and how it takes off, so you can start to pause and regroup when it starts up.
3) EFT looks at the emotions underneath the cycle. The cycle might tell you your partner is shutting down and getting defensive because he's an insensitive jerk who doesn't care about your feelings, but we see something totally different. We unpack the emotions to understand - what are you feeling when you start shutting down?
4) EFT has a specific affair recovery process. The first stage of the process is to understand your cycle, and what led to there being a crack in the foundation. The first stage helps you form a new cycle and a new way to communicate effectively about regular things and about the affair, especially when one partner gets triggered or anxious. The second stage of the process helps you delve deeper into healing the rupture caused by the affair.
About Me and EFT
I have completed all the required trainings in EFT, and am working towards certification in this model.
If you want to understand more about EFT, please visit the national website at www.iceeft.com