New Workshop—Dancing With Dragons: Helping Couples Depolarize

Join Us for the Next Clinical Workshop on April 10th!


With Christine Armstrong, MFT and Louis Dangles, MFT

This webinar is the eighth in EHI’s series of webinars on depolarization:
Depolarizing Our Minds, Our Hearts & Our Nation

Date: Saturday, April 10th, 2021

Time: 10am-1pm, Pacific Time; Via Zoom Meeting w/ Zoom Breakout Rooms

CE: 3 CEs for live participation pending sponsorship approval*. Fee: $18.50, Please contact us for more info regarding the course at program@ehinstitute.org.

Cost: $35* General/Professional; $20 Student/Elder
* We understand that COVID-19 has created economic stress for many, so if you are experiencing economic hardship due to COVID-19, the requested fee for webinars in this series is $10 (though no one will be turned away due to lack of funds-please contact Michelle for assistance at program[at]ehinstitute.org).

Dancing With Dragons: Helping Couples Depolarize

Developed and facilitated by EHI Affiliate Instructors: Louis Dangles, MFT, and Christine Armstrong, MFT

Relational polarization is a specific type of conflict dynamic that frequently presents in couples therapy as an irreconcilable impasse: the endless argument that returns again and again but goes nowhere. Typically, in this condition, each partner is convinced they hold the correct view. In a polarized dynamic, the emotional field between partners is dominated by a sense of life and death, all or nothing, no middle ground, no room for compromise, no one has my back – I am on my own.

In a polarized dynamic, the gravitational pull from partners to take their side can be intense for the therapist. In the context of this pull, it can be extremely helpful for the therapist to imagine that partners caught in this dynamic are representing opposing positions along a values continuum. Some common examples are: saving-spending, work-play, dependency-independence, spontaneity-planning. In this way, the task of the couples therapist is helping partners recognize that each of their positions holds value for the whole.

It is important to say that, obviously, not all couples conflict is polarization. Having said that, dynamics of polarization often emerge in most comprehensive couples therapies. Working effectively to defuse a polarized dynamic can open a territory of deeper vulnerability and sensitivity between partners, and strengthen the collaborative dimension of relationship.

Join us as Lou and Chris illustrate an approach to helping couples identify, and work through their polarized dynamic.

*Continuing Education Info

  • The Existential-Humanistic Institute (EHI) collaborates with the Society for Humanistic Psychology (Division 32 of the American Psychological Association) to provide APA Continuing Education credit at approved EHI events.

    APA Division 32, Society for Humanistic Psychology is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. APA Division 32, Society for Humanistic Psychology maintains responsibility for this program and its content.
  • Accessibility: It is the policy of EHI to make every reasonable effort to provide attendees with disabilities with the opportunity to take full advantage of its programs. Please contact us ahead of time so we can work with you arrange programming to needs. Please contact our Admin, Michelle by email at program@ehinstitute.org or phone at 415.689.1475 to make arrangements.

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