Elvina Lui, MFT
Restore and Renew Couples Counseling
2603 Camino Ramon
San Ramon, CA 94583
Elvina Lui, MFT
Couples counseling is Elvina’s specialization and passion. She is trained and capable to see other types of clients–teenagers, individual clients, families–but she has chosen to focus her time and efforts on couples counseling. She loves the nature of the work–helping two people that are motivated to change, improve, and grow closer as a team. Of course, relationship counseling means working through conflicts and hurt, sometimes involving heavy issues like infidelity, sex addiction, gambling addiction, alcoholism, long term unemployment, bankruptcy, and the after effects of childhood abuse. It is not easy work–for Elvina or for the two people–but it is so amazingly rewarding when the relationship is successfully repaired. Couples walk in on the verge of splitting up but walk away holding hands and in love again.
Marriage & Family Therapist
---Can counseling help our relationship? How does it help?---
Counseling works for some and not for others, why is this?
Counseling is not a magical process that make your problems go away.
Counseling gives you new tools and new approaches, but it is up to the couple on how they will use these tools. Just like anything else, it takes practice to master a skill. The couples that put the time and effort into learning and practicing, will be rewarded with better results.
Counseling can help mediate ongoing conflicts, clarify misunderstandings, effectively and fairly address deep rooted disagreements, improve communication, increase sense of intimacy, and improve relationship satisfaction.
Successful relationship counseling does more than just minimize arguments and force the couple to compromise, because a fulfilling relationship is more than just scraping by and tolerating the other person. The higher goal of counseling is to help the couple create a relationship where both individuals can find support, security, intimacy, and happiness.
---What is counseling like?---
At the beginning of counseling, I ask the couple about their history and the current problems they face, to get an understanding of the current relationship and define the specific problem areas. Then we will talk about your goals and expectations for counseling, to define the specific results you want to see.
Typically, counseling sessions are scheduled to be once a week, with each session lasting around fifty minutes. Though it is common that couples request extended sessions of 80 minutes when they feel they need more time to address everything.
The course of counseling can be short-term, focusing on a specific issue and will not drag on after that specific issue is resolved. The duration really depends on the goals and expectation of the couple–some deeper rooted, complex problems would require more time to fully address.
For counseling to be effective and more than “just talk”, I assign “homework” for the couple to do during the time between our sessions. This can range from reading parts of a book, to practicing a specific skill, or to keep a track of the frequency of a thought or behavior (e.g. how often do heated fights happen, how long did conversations last).
What you can expect from counseling:
Effective and proven techniques along with practical guidance
Compassion, respect and understanding
Perspectives to illuminate persistent patterns and negative feelings
Real strategies for enacting positive change