Encyclopedia of Couple and Family Therapy

Living Edition
| Editors: Jay Lebow, Anthony Chambers, Douglas C. Breunlin

Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy

  • Stephanie A. Wiebe
  • Sue M. Johnson
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-15877-8_193-1

Name of the Strategy

Emotionally focused couple therapy.

Synonyms

Introduction

Emotionally focused couple therapy (EFT) is an approach to couple therapy that helps create attachment security in relationships by guiding partners to explore and share with one another their core attachment-related emotions and needs. EFT conceptualizes the negative interaction patterns between partners in distressed couple relationships and the associated strong negative emotions as arising from emotional disconnection and an insecure attachment bond. Core, primary attachment-related emotions are often blocked from awareness and expression in distressed couple relationships by protective reactions such as numbing due to the triggering of attachment-related fears. In EFT, couples are encouraged to explore core primary attachment-related emotions and needs as they arise in the therapy session and express these to their partner. Partners are then encouraged to tune into their...

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References

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stephanie A. Wiebe
    • 1
  • Sue M. Johnson
    • 2
  1. 1.International Centre for Excellence in Emotionally Focused TherapyOttawaCanada
  2. 2.The University of OttawaOttawaCanada

Section editors and affiliations

  • Kelley Quirk
    • 1
  • Adam R. Fisher
    • 2
  1. 1.Colorado State UniversityFort CollinsUSA
  2. 2.The Family Institute at Northwestern UniversityEvanstonUSA