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Lightbulb Love Letters

Newly Committed/Premarital Counseling

Combination of Gottman and Prepare/Enrich Assessment


The program begins by utilizing a comprehensive assessment tool, known as Prepare and Enrich or the Gottman Assessment, to assist couples in identifying both their strengths and areas of growth in their relationship. These thorough assessment encompasses a range of areas, such as communication, conflict resolution, intimacy, personality, and more.  

Based on the outcome of the assessment, personalized feedback and recommendations for improvement are given to each couple. The program includes a plethora of resources and tools, such as workbooks, exercises, and activities, all designed to assist couples in developing and strengthening their relationship skills. Overall, the program is highly comprehensive.

Its a class but still one on one private sessions with just you and your partner so you can get individual attention to your needs.

Quality premarital preparation, can reduce the risk of divorce and increase relationship skills and satisfaction.  Participants with premarital education had higher marital satisfaction, higher commitment, and lower marital conflict.

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Premarital and newly committed counseling

I provide two premarital counseling programs that are tailored to meet your specific needs. Please see the descriptions below to determine which program is best suited to your goals. During our free consultation, we can discuss your needs and goals to determine which program is the best fit for you. 

Prepare/Enrich Premarital  feedback sessions


-On average 4-6 sessions

-Take an online assessment

-Explore strengths and growth areas

-Stimulates important conversations

-Identify major stressors

-Learn about personality differences

-Hot-button topic discussions

Gottman Premarital Counseling

-On average 12-14 sessions

-Gottman online assessment

-Review of the 7 principles that make a marriage work 

-Deep dive on building friendship and admiration 

-Explore different ways to manage conflict

-Improve communication styles by exploring ways to increase empathy, listening skills and understanding

-How to make compromises

-Self-soothing and emotional regulation

Best suited for couples who have been together for at least 2 years or need to dive deeper into communication patterns




The Prepare/Enrich assessment is a widely used tool for premarital and marital counseling that is designed to help couples explore and strengthen their relationship. The assessment consists of a series of questions that are designed to assess the couple's relationship in various areas, including communication, very basic conflict resolution, personality traits, family of origin, finances, and topics of choice.

The main purpose of the Prepare/Enrich assessment is to stimulate open and honest dialogue between couples about important relationship issues. While the assessment is not necessarily designed to solve specific issues, it does highlight areas that may need attention and increases awareness of potential challenges that the couple may face.

By identifying areas of strength and areas for growth, the assessment can help couples to have meaningful and helpful discussions about topics that they may not have considered on their own. These discussions can lead to a deeper understanding of each other's perspectives, increased empathy, and a stronger foundation for building a healthy and fulfilling relationship.

The assessment is taken online and typically takes about 30-45 minutes to complete. Once completed, a report is generated that provides a detailed analysis of the couple's strengths and areas for growth in each of these areas. The report also provides customized recommendations and exercises that the couple can use to improve their relationship.

The Prepare/Enrich assessment is based on extensive research and has been used with over 4 million couples worldwide. It is considered one of the most reliable and valid assessment tools available for premarital and marital counseling. 

The online assessment 

I will send you a link to complete the assessment - cost $30. After completing the Prepare/Enrich online assessment, we can schedule a series of 4-6 feedback sessions that typically last between 45 minutes to an hour each. During these sessions, we will delve into your assessment results in detail, highlighting your strengths as a couple while also identifying areas that may need improvement.


The number of sessions required may vary depending on the couple's unique needs and concerns. If necessary, additional sessions can be scheduled to ensure that all topics are covered thoroughly. These feedback sessions are designed to provide you with valuable insights into your relationship, helping you to better understand each other's perspectives and providing a foundation for growth and development as a couple.

How the program works!

After completing the assessment, you will receive both a couple's report and a couple's workbook. During our counseling sessions, we will review both the workbook and the report together.

1. Schedule a free consult to get started. This consult is about 15 minutes to see if the program is a good fit for your needs, to review the objectives of the assessment and answer questions.

2. Complete the assessment. The cost is $30.  Once the assessment has been completed I will receive an email.  I will follow up with an email to schedule our first feedback session or you may email me once completed. 

3. Feedback sessions: please note the topics listed may take more than one session

  • Session 1: Strength and growth area in relationship dynamics communication

    • Review: Sharing strength and growth areas

    • Assertiveness and active listening skills

    • Creating a wish list

  • Session 2: Personal Stress Profile​

    • Identifying the most critical issues​

    • 10 basic steps for conflict resolution  

​If you're interested, we can go beyond the Prepare/Enrich assessment and do a more in-depth exploration of conflict management. While the Prepare/Enrich assessment provides a solid foundation for premarital counseling, conflict management is a key component of any successful relationship, and we can work together to develop effective conflict resolution strategies that are tailored to your specific needs and concerns.

  • Session 3: Couples Map and Family Map of closeness and flexibility

    • Family of origin - Family Map​

    • Couples Map 

  • Session 4: SCOPE personality goals

    • Basic personality types ​

    • Goals

  • Possible sessions: Topics that you want to discuss before they become bigger problems later on​

    • Financial Management Relationship Issues: Prepare/Enrich has several exercises to review​

    • Sex and Affection Leisure Activities

    • Family of Origin Differences

    • Parenting 

The top 5 arguments in marriages can vary from couple to couple, as every relationship is unique. However, here are six common areas of conflict that many couples experience:

  • Finances - Disagreements over finances are one of the most common sources of conflict in marriages. This can include disagreements over spending habits, budgeting, debt, and financial goals.

  • Communication - Communication breakdowns or misunderstandings can lead to frustration, anger, and resentment in a marriage. Differences in communication styles, failure to listen or understand, and unspoken expectations can all contribute to this issue.

  • Household Chores - Unequal distribution of household chores or disagreements about how they should be done can lead to tension and arguments in a marriage.

  • Intimacy and Sexuality - Differences in sexual desire, preferences, or expectations can cause conflict in a marriage. This may include differences in sexual desire, expectations around frequency or type of sexual activity, and differences in sexual preferences or boundaries.

  • Parenting - Differences in parenting styles, discipline, and expectations for raising children can be a significant source of conflict for married couples. Disagreements about the role of extended family members in child-rearing can also contribute to this issue.

  • In-laws and extended family: Conflicts with in-laws and extended family members can cause significant tension in marriages. This may involve disagreements over how much time to spend with family, differences in values or beliefs, or conflicts over parenting styles or decisions.

Gottman Premarital Counseling


The class on the 7 principles for making a marriage work is designed to provide couples with practical tools and strategies to build and maintain a happy and healthy relationship. The class is based on decades of research conducted by Gottman and his team at the Gottman Institute, which has identified the key factors that contribute to successful, long-lasting marriages.

The class covers seven principles, which include enhancing your love maps (knowing your partner deeply), nurturing fondness and admiration, turning toward each other instead of away, accepting influence from your partner, solving solvable problems, overcoming gridlock, and creating shared meaning. By understanding and applying these principles, couples can strengthen their emotional connection, resolve conflicts more effectively, and deepen their intimacy and commitment to each other.

Each session of the program will adopt a structured format comprising a lecture delivered through PowerPoint, a possible video presentation, an in-session exercise, a discussion focusing on the weekly theme, and a practice goal accompanied by assigned readings between sessions. It is noteworthy that despite the structured nature of this program, flexibility is ensured to cater to individual needs. It is important to emphasize that the program is not designed as a conventional counseling intervention; however, it does address emotional and relationship issues. Upon completing the program, couples can choose to continue their therapeutic journey by pursuing additional counseling sessions.


Helpful Material

How the program works!

1. To get started with the program, you can schedule a free consultation by emailing During this consultation, you can ask any questions you have and determine if the program is a good fit for your needs.

2. If you decide to move forward with the program after the consultation, simply email back and let me know that you would like to schedule a session. I will then send you a link to fill out the necessary paperwork on my portal and we can schedule your first appointment. If you are using insurance, we will submit your insurance information to my billing management company, or if you have BCBS, I will handle the billing.

3. After our first session, I will send you a link to complete the Gottman assessment, which costs $40 for a couple. In the following session, we will review the results of the assessment and identify strengths and areas for growth.

4. In each subsequent session, we will cover 1-2 of the principles from the Gottman Research (as outlined in his book). For the best outcome and benefit from the program, it is recommended that we meet regularly on a weekly or biweekly basis. Additionally, there will be assignments to practice in between each session, as practicing is vital to truly benefit from the enrichment process. The amount of effort you put into the program can significantly impact its effectiveness.



Estimated Overview 

* First Session: Get to know you two

-Take assessments between sessions

* Review of Gottman Assessment

* Overview of the seven principles, Gottman's research, and lecture on what makes a marriage work:

  • Video discussing Gottman's 4 horsemen that are disasters to marriages

  • This session covers chapters 1-3

* Enhance your love maps/Fondness Admiration

  • Lecture on principle 1/2

  • Practice Exercise on Love Maps

  • Practice Exercise on Asking open-ended questions

  • Assign a practice assignment

  • This session covers Chapters 2-4

* Stress Reduction Exercise

  • Increase your ability to truly listen to each other related to stressful events in your life (not related to conflict)

A stress-reducing exercise called "soothing oneself and one's partner." The exercise involves taking turns as the listener and the speaker. The speaker shares their feelings and the listener listens without interrupting or trying to solve the problem. The listener then repeats back what they heard to show understanding and validate the speaker's emotions. The goal is to reduce stress and promote emotional intimacy in the relationship.

* Let your Partner Influence you/2 kinds of conflict

  • Lecture on Principle 4

  • Exercise 1, Yield to win

  • Two kinds of conflict

  • Exercise on solvable and perpetual problems

  • Lecture the keys to managing conflict

  • Covers chapters 7 and 8


* Working on solving solvable problems

  • Lecture on principle 5 - soften your startup

  • Exercise practice on softening startup

  • Lecture on learning to make and receive repair attempts  

  • Practice with the repair checklist by learning how to repair after conflict and 4 horsemen


* Full session on anxiety and self-soothing practice

  • Self-soothing practice exercise

  • Self-regulation

  • Co-regulation

  • Nervous System overview from a psychological perspective 


Self-regulation of emotions refers to an individual's ability to manage and control their emotions in a healthy and adaptive way. It involves recognizing and identifying one's emotions, evaluating the intensity and impact of those emotions, and then choosing an appropriate response or action that aligns with personal values and goals. Self-regulation of emotions is important for overall emotional well-being, effective communication, and healthy relationships. 

*  Introduce the Initiator-Inquirer framework on how to work through an issue

  • Introduce how to practice

  • Read through an example

  • Practice with examples

  • Practice talking about a topic of couples' choice using the I-I approach. 


​The initiator-inquirer process is a tool used in couples therapy to help couples communicate effectively and resolve conflicts. The process involves one person, called the initiator, bringing up an issue or concern in a respectful and non-critical way. The other person, called the inquirer, then asks questions to better understand the issue and the initiator's perspective. The inquirer is encouraged to avoid making assumptions or judgments and to focus on gathering information. Once the inquirer has a better understanding, they can then share their own thoughts and feelings on the matter. The goal of the initiator-inquirer process is to promote healthy communication, understanding, and collaboration between partners.​


* Work through gridlock issues

  • Lecture on Principle 6  

  • Overview of understanding the dream behind the conflict

  • Practice exercises on detecting dreams behind the conflict

  • Lecture on working on a gridlocked Issue

  • Practice exercise on a gridlocked martial issue

  • This session covers Chapter 11


The "dreams within conflict" approach involves helping couples to identify their deeper, underlying dreams and aspirations, which often get buried in the midst of conflict. By understanding and acknowledging each other's dreams, couples can learn to support each other and work towards shared goals, rather than getting bogged down in disagreements and misunderstandings. The technique involves a structured conversation process that helps couples to listen to each other, identify their individual dreams, and find common ground for moving forward.


*  The Art of Comprise 

  • Lecture on how to compromise

  • Exercise on how to practice using the skills of compromising about issues

  • It's essential to note that, as this is a practice session, the topic brought up should be non-threatening and have less emotional intensity to it. This slower approach will allow couples to become familiar with the format before moving on to more emotionally challenging topics.


Compromise involves finding a middle ground between two conflicting needs or desires, where both partners feel heard and valued. This involves active listening, empathy, and a willingness to negotiate and make small sacrifices for the sake of the relationship. Additionally, research stresses the importance of taking breaks and avoiding getting stuck in negative patterns during the compromise process.​

* Explore Family of Origin 

  • Aim to stimulate awareness and conversation about each family of origin

​*  Create Shared Meaning

  • Review readings or assignments

  • Lecture on principle 7 the ideas of shared meaning pillars: rituals of connection, support for each other's roles, shared goals, shared values and symbols

  • Exercise on using the four pillars above

  • Lecture on The magic 6 hours

  • Lecture on The marital poop detector

  • Lecture on forgiving yourself

  • Practice exercise 

  • Next steps for therapy or plan of action for applying the skills over time

  • This session covers Chapter 12


Shared meaning, as described by John Gottman, refers to the shared values, beliefs, goals, and traditions that couples create together over time. It involves creating a sense of purpose and direction for the relationship, beyond just the daily routines and tasks. It requires ongoing communication and negotiation to develop and maintain, and is based on a deep understanding and acceptance of each other's individual perspectives and backgrounds. Shared meaning can help couples navigate challenges and conflicts, and provide a sense of fulfillment and satisfaction in the relationship.


Private pay is $115 per session 

Insurance, If an individual meets the criteria for a DSM mental health diagnosis, insurance coverage may be applicable. For more information regarding fees or if you have any questions, please refer to the Fees or Got Questions page. Insurance sets the policy for the 45-50 minute session time. The fee amount may vary based on the contracted rates, deductible amounts, and copays specified in your insurance plan. My billing support team will provide you with the fee for the sessions.


On average 60minutes to 1.5 hours. Closer to 1 hour and 20 minutes


I offer sessions via Telehealth for those in OK or TX. 


Schedule a meet and greet before your first session, we can ensure if the class is a good fit and you can ask questions.



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