Frequently Asked Questions

How much time is spent in a typical weekend?

Assuming it is a weekend retreat rather than mid-week you would arrive on Friday at 3pm and departure would be on Sunday at 1pm or 2pm. Mid-week would follow the same time line.

What is couples' coaching?

Briefly, couples' coaching is a psycho-educational process that helps couples understand the dynamics of their power struggle and helps them to gain the tools necessary in order to achieve cooperation and reconnection. Couple's coaching is a short cut from romance to abiding love. It is a difficult journey.

What is different about Sonoma Couple's Retreat compared to weekly counseling?

Most retreats provide a more intense experience towards resolution of a couple's issues. The time between visits in traditional counseling dilutes the experience. The Sonoma Couple's Retreat is most unique because it includes lodging in a retreat-like setting which provides a seamless flow to the couple's coaching experience.

Do you work with non-married couples as well as married couples?

Yes.

Will this be a religious experience?

For some people their religion is an important part of the relationship. It is therefore not ignored but rather incorporated in their relationship. For other people, religion is not a part of their lives. In such cases, it simply doesn't come up.

How many other couples will be at the retreat?

Another unique aspect to the Sonoma Couple's Retreat is that it is exclusive. working in the context of the relationship one couple at a time.

Do the costs cover all expenses such as, food & lodging?

Yes, the cost covers lodging, breakfast, lunch, materials and 10 to 12 hours of coaching. A massage, yoga and reflexology are options available at addition cost. Dinners are not included in order that couples go to a local restaurant (Friday night and Saturday night) and have a brief break from the retreat.

Is going on a couple's retreat like going on a mini-vacation?

Perhaps some retreats are like mini-vacations however, the Sonoma Couple's Retreat is a working retreat where each partner brings their intention and integrity to the work to achieve their goals. It is intense and a powerful experience. That said, after the retreat couples can stay in the cottage as a B and B so that they can enjoy Sonoma and all it has to offer.

Why should I consider going to a Sonoma Couple's Retreat?

When you are ready to stop grieving, raging, suffering, failing, fearing and dying inside, you should consider a retreat. When you are ready to come alive and need the guidance of a trained professional coach you should consider a retreat... The Sonoma Couple's Retreat.

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I want to go (to the retreat) however my spouse doesn't want to. How can I convince him/her?

You can't, nor should you try. You can educate your partner, share information with your partner but it is important that your partner's decisions are respected. You can, on the other hand, make the retreat by yourself so that you can understand the dynamics of your relationship and gain the skills you need to grow within the relationship.

My spouse and I are separated, but we are unsure of what we want out of our relationship. Will the Sonoma Couple's Retreat help us?

Many couples come to the retreat with divorce papers in their "back pocket" so to speak. The time spent during the retreat gives them an opportunity to create a healthy, non-damaging divorce... or indeed to reconnect and bring healthy change to the marriage.

My spouse and I never communicate. Will the Sonoma Couple's Retreat help us to start communicating?

Communication is the most important ingredient to any relationship. It is also the least understood. So, learning to speak so your words can be heard, and listening until the voice you are hearing is other than your own is the very first step in the weekend.

My spouse has been unfaithful. I still love him/her but don't feel I can trust him/her anymore. Will the Sonoma Couple's Retreat guide us in the right direction?

Affairs are not uncommon in relationships and usually they are not about sex. Usually they are about connection, being paid attention to, being heard. They don't work out too well and regaining trust takes time. The retreat is a impactful start in the healing process.

My spouse and I have grown apart since our children have left, can the Sonoma Couple's Retreat help us reconnect?

Empty nest and retirement are two very difficult but exciting changes in the lifetime of a marriage. Rediscovering one another can be a delight but so often the old unresolved issues get in the way. A couple's retreat is a great start.

My spouse is full of anger and often times abusive. Can the Sonoma Couple's Retreat help our relationship?

The Sonoma Couple's Retreat is a good second step to recovering the intimacy in your relationship. The first step is anger management and the absolute end to abuse. If that does not happen there is no possibility for a healthy relationship. I think it is important to note here that retreats and counseling/coaching are not cure-alls. If there is a concern it is perfectly appropriate speak with your counselor or to phone me and discuss the matter before you make a decision.

My spouse and I would consider ourselves to have a happy marriage, but we are looking to become even closer. Can the Sonoma Couple's Retreat help us?

The retreat provides a time and space away from the everyday stuff of life giving couples a chance to explore new beginnings.

My spouse and I are no longer intimate. Will the Sonoma Couple's Retreat help us feel closer again?

Usually there are reasons for distancing and separation between couples and it is these reasons that get addressed and resolved during the retreat. After that, intimacy is no longer a problem.

Can we continue to see our therapist after doing a retreat?

A couple's retreat is a productive adjunct to couple's therapy. It is a good idea to discuss the retreat with your therapist so that he/she can incorporate the work you will have done with your ongoing therapy.

If my partner doesn't want to do the retreat but will for my sake, is that okay?

If your partner is willing to cooperate with your request and as long as both of you are willing to participate it is perfectly fine.

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What if we are not comfortable with your approach to coaching once we start the weekend?

Your comfort is critical to achieving your couple's retreat goals. While this has not been an issue for couples in the past, should it come up, it would need to be addressed in session. There is no one way to do couple's coaching or any coaching for that matter and your needs would be taken into consideration as we proceed. More importantly, working through the therapeutic relationship is not unlike working through your personal relationship and it would be an opportunity to further the work.

Is there a model of coaching you adhere to?

My initial training was in Imago Couple's Therapy developed by Dr. Harville Hendrix over 20 years ago. Incorporated into that model is solution oriented, cognitive/behavioral, psycho-educational and many others that bring together what is called an eclectic approach to counseling.

Can we do a retreat during the week?

Yes.

What happens if we have to cancel?

The cost of the retreat is $2,950. A $300 non-refundable deposit is made at the time of registration by check or credit card. The balance is due upon your arrival. Note: Registration is confirmed upon receipt of your check or credit card confirmation.

What happens if you cancel the retreat?

We will only cancel in the event of an extreme emergency or illness. You deposit will be fully refunded and you will receive a credit of $300 toward a rescheduled retreat in the future.

Will you refer us to a couple's counselor if we need one after the retreat.

I will do my best to locate a therapist/counselor in your area who is trained in the models of coaching you have had during the retreat.

How do we pay for the retreat?

Visa and MasterCard are accepted for a $300 non-refundable at the time of reservation. The balance is due upon arrival at the retreat.

Will my insurance pay for retreats?

No. You will have a receipt at the end of the weekend that can be submitted to your flex plan but there is no assurance that your flex plan will reimburse the cost of the Sonoma Couple's Retreat.

Back to the top

- How much time is spent in a typical weekend?
- What is couples' coaching?
- What is different about Sonoma Couple's Retreat compared to weekly counseling?
- Do you work with non-married couples as well as married couples?
- Will this be a religious experience?
- How many other couples will be at the retreat?
- Do the costs cover all expenses such as, food & lodging?
- Is going on a couple's retreat like going on a mini-vacation?
- Why should I consider going to a Sonoma Couple's Retreat?
- I want to go (to the retreat) however my spouse doesn't want to. How can I convince him/her? I want to go (to the retreat) however my spouse doesn't want to. How can I convince him/her.
- My spouse and I are separated, but we are unsure of what we want out of our relationship. Will the Sonoma Couple's Retreat help us?
- My spouse and I never communicate. Will the Sonoma Couple's Retreat help us to start communicating?
- My spouse has been unfaithful, I still love them, but I feel like I can't trust them anymore. Will the Sonoma Couple's Retreat guide us in the right direction?
- My spouse and I have grown apart since our children have left, can the Sonoma Couple's Retreat help us reconnect?
- My spouse is full of anger and often times abusive. Can the Sonoma Couple's Retreat help our relationship?
- "My spouse and I would consider ourselves to have a happy marriage, but we are looking to become even closer. Can the Sonoma Couple's Retreat help us?
- My spouse and I are no longer intimate. Will the Sonoma Couple's Retreat help us feel closer again?
- Can we continue to see our therapist after doing a retreat?
- If my partner doesn't want to do the retreat but will for my sake, is that okay?
- What if we are not comfortable with your approach to coaching once we start the weekend?
- Is there a model of coaching you adhere to?
- Can we do a retreat during the week?
- What happens if we have to cancel?
- What happens if you cancel the retreat?
- Will you refer us to a couple's counselor if we need one after the retreat?
- How do we pay for the retreat?
- Will my insurance pay for retreats?

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