The program includes:

  • Skill Development every other week,
  • One on One Counselling on the weeks in between
  • Online resources and coaching calls to help maintain your progress


The Relationship program helps you address: 

  • Break-downs in connection between partners
  • Communication  challenges
  • The art of creating "we" mindsets
  • Finding and addressing negative communication patterns
  • ​communication, conflict resolution
  • infidelity
  • healthy relationships
  • separation/divorce
  • co-parenting and blended families
  • roles and responsibilities
  • and much more...


Participants attend 16 consecutive sessions, intermingling group and individual therapy, which helps them integrate the skills into their lives and supports the process. Each group session stands on it's own; however, the coming together of all the information completes the picture and solidifies the learning. 

Participants also have access to an ongoing portion of the therapeutic process that includes online resources and classes, and coaching calls. 

To receive your certificate of attendance and access to the online resources, you must  have completed all 16 weeks of the program.

The fee structure for the Relationship Program is as follows:

For those registered in the complete Anxiety, Depression, and Stress program at Michelle Neustaedter Enterprises, the fee for this 16-week program is $1,550** (including gst). 

**(There is a sliding scale for the fee structure based upon income and bills - and the fees can be paid in up to 3 instalments plus an enrollment fee. If you have EFAP, EAP, BlueCross or Greenshield, part of the fee can be direct billed without out of pocket cost to you. If you have a health spending account, Manulife, SunLife, ClaimSecure, or other benefit program, we can discuss further what the fee structure will look like. Depending on your plan, we will determine what the individual cost to you is and create your individualized payment plan)

There are 3 options for the group program:

Thursdays at 10:30am
Tuesdays at 7:30pm
Saturdays at 11:30am


What you will learn in the course of this program:

  • How to improve communication strategies with your partner
  • Why you are getting the results you are getting and how to improve those results
  • The importance of self-care and specific steps to improve your self-care
  • How to improve your sense of self-worth, self-esteem, and self-concept (how to challenge the inner critic and kick it once and for all)
  • How to better regulate emotions and reduce the big ups and downs
  • The importance of being intentional and purposeful in the change process
  • How to set boundaries with yourself, and others
  • How to navigate conflict more effectively
  • Intellectual foreplay and connecting with your spouse
  • Going from the 50/50 mindset to a 100/100 mindset


Your Individual Therapist will also help you to integrate these tools and more to ensure maximum shifts in results and expand on your learning as well as deal with any specific issues you would like to discuss. 

To make you individual sessions as productive as possible, we will send out a list of questions we would like you to have answered before coming to the individual one-on-one sessions. 

You will receive a small pocket journal to be used in the counselling process, a pen, a duotang for your group sessions, and a certificate of attendance upon completion. 

Helpful Relationship Advice


 When we are in a relationship, one of the scariest things is when we notice a breakdown in that relationship and we come to a fork in our road where we must decide whether to keep trying or to end the relationship.


We are here to help you recover from that breakdown and bridge the gap between you and your partner so that tomorrow can be brighter.  Any Relationship can be a successful relationship.  

 

 

Why do so many couples have difficulty with communication? Often, the answer lies in emotions. Before marriage and even just a more committed relationship, we had one over-powering emotion – love. But now, the emotions of hurt, anger, disappointment, and fear often dominate. These emotions do not encourage us to communicate. Or, if we communicate it is likely to be negative or critical. We speak out of our anger and create even more negative feelings. The Key is in learning how to share emotions without condemnation. You might begin by saying, “I feel hurt and when you have time, I need your help.” Identifying your feelings and choosing to share them is step one. Step two is accepting the feelings of your mate and asking: “What can I do to help?”

 

I’m convinced that keeping the emotional love tank full is as important to a marriage as maintaining the proper oil level in your car. Running your marriage on an empty love tank may cost you even more than trying to drive your car without oil. How do you fill the love tank of your spouse?  You find out what makes them feel loved and then to the best of your ability, you speak their “love language.” There are five love languages: words of affirmation, gifts, acts of service, quality time, and physical touch. One of these speaks more deeply to your spouse than the other four. Learn to speak the right love language and watch your spouse begin to smile.  When they feel loved, they are likely to reciprocate.

 

 

Each one of us has emotional needs that must be met in our relationship - whether we are male or female.
You can better understand your partner's emotional needs and easily transition into a happier, more fulfilling relationship.

 

As soon as I realized that a large Love Bank balance triggered the feeling of love, I went to work trying to discover what spouses could do for each other that would make the largest Love Bank deposits. I would ask couples, "What could your spouse do for you that would make you the happiest?" That very question focused on a core issue in marriage -- the issue of care. I could have asked the question, "How would you like your spouse to care for you?" As it turns out, care in marriage is doing what it takes to make each other happy.

 

What is an emotional need? It is a craving that, when satisfied, leaves you with a feeling of happiness and contentment, and, when unsatisfied, leaves you with a feeling of unhappiness and frustration. There are probably thousands of emotional needs. A need for birthday parties, peanut butter sandwiches, Monday Night Football, I could go on and on. Some people have some of those needs while others have different needs. If you feel good doing something, or if someone does something for you that makes you feel good, an emotional need has been met.

But not all emotional needs are created equally. When some are met, you may only feel comfortable--they make small Love Bank deposits. There are others, however, that can make you feel downright euphoric. In fact they make you so happy that you're likely to fall in love with the person that meets them. I call those our most important emotional needs because they make the largest Love Bank deposits of all. And those are the very same emotional needs that a husband and wife expect each other to meet in marriage.

 

By now you can probably see where I'm headed. My first goal when counseling a couple is to help them identify their most important emotional needs. Once those needs are identified, I help them learn to meet those needs for each other. I want them to make the largest deposits possible into each other's Love Banks. If all goes well, they begin making those large deposits and eventually they are in love with each other.

 

 It takes time for the four horsemen and the flooding that comes in their wake to overrun a marriage. And yet divorce can so often be predicted by listening to a single conversation between newlyweds. How can this be? The answer is that by analyzing any disagreement a couple has, you get a good sense of the pattern they tend to follow. A crucial part of that pattern is whether their repair attempts succeed or fail. Repair attempts are efforts the couple makes ("Let's take a break," "Wait, I need to calm down") to deescalate the tension during a touchy discussion-to put on the brakes so flooding is prevented.

 
Repair attempts save marriages not just because they decrease emotional tension between spouses, but because by lowering the stress level they also prevent your heart from racing and making you feel flooded. When the four horsemen rule a couple's communication, repair attempts often don't even get noticed. Especially when you're feeling flooded, you're not able to hear a verbal white flag.

 
In unhappy marriages a feedback loop develops between the four horsemen and the failure of repair attempts. The more contemptuous and defensive the couple is with each other, the more flooding occurs, and the harder it is to hear and respond to a repair. And since the repair is not heard, the contempt and defensiveness just get heightened, making flooding more pronounced, which makes it more difficult to hear the next repair attempt, until finally one partner withdraws.

 

 

Couples / Relationship Program

​​Here's How The Program Works:

We as individuals learn best when our learning is kept accountable, and strengthened by others.

No matter what you are facing today, there are others who have been in the same place as you. 

The Relationship Program involves 2 important pieces:

  • One on One Counselling with your individual therapist

  • Group Counselling with others who are growing and working through issues.


Why Group Work?

"The best part about being with a group is that you don’t have to do everything alone.

– Anonymous

This quote may seem like a pretty obvious truth – of course you won’t do everything alone if you’re in a group!

However, it is an obvious truth that we often forget.

It can be easy to slide into isolation when we’re feeling down, especially for those suffering from an invisible illness or problem, but this is the exact opposite of the action that is most likely to help us climb out of that pit. Loneliness and isolation tend to breed more loneliness and isolation, but making the (often difficult or exhausting) effort to connect with others is just the thing we may need to start feeling better.

As uncomfortable as it may sound, sometimes sharing difficult thoughts and feelings in a group setting can be extremely effective in facilitating healing.

This quote describes how sharing can help:

“Some of the most comforting words in the universe are ‘me too.’ That moment when you find out that your struggle is also someone else’s struggle, that you’re not alone, and that others have been down the same road.” – Anonymous

In The Theory and Practice of Group Psychotherapy, Irvin D. Yalom outlines the key therapeutic principles that have been derived from self-reports from individuals who have been involved in the group therapy process:

The instillation of hope: The group contains members at different stages of the treatment process. Seeing people who are coping or recovering gives hope to those at the beginning of the process.
Universality: Being part of a group of people who have the same experiences helps people see that what they are going through is universal and that they are not alone.
Imparting information: Group members can help each other by sharing information.
Altruism: Group members can share their strengths and help others in the group, which can boost self-esteem and confidence.
The corrective recapitulation of the primary family group: The therapy group is much like a family in some ways. Within the group, each member can explore how childhood experiences contributed to personality and behaviors. They can also learn to avoid behaviors that are destructive or unhelpful in real life.
Development of socialization techniques: The group setting is a great place to practice new behaviors. The setting is safe and supportive, allowing group members to experiment without the fear of failure.
Imitative behavior: Individuals can model the behavior of other members of the group or observe and imitate the behavior of the therapist.
Interpersonal learning: By interacting with other people and receiving feedback from the group and the therapist, members of the group can gain a greater understanding of themselves.
Group cohesiveness: Because the group is united in a common goal, members gain a sense of belonging and acceptance.
Catharsis: Sharing feelings and experiences with a group of people can help relieve pain, guilt, or stress.
Existential factors: While working within a group offers support and guidance, group therapy helps member realize that they are responsible for their own lives, actions, and choices.

The American Psychological Association notes another important benefit of group therapy: Diversity. We all have different experiences, backgrounds, and personalities, which leads us to our own unique perspective on the world. Working with a group can help clients see things from a new perspective, which may illuminate new ways to take on old problems and new strategies to overcome obstacles that seem insurmountable (APA, 2017).

To make sure you are taking advantage of these benefits of group therapy, follow the following suggestions:

  • Take a pledge. Signing a contract that outlines what is expected of each participant can encourage participants to engage and contribute to group discussions, and provide incentive to engage even when it is difficult.
  • Participate. Some days are more difficult than others when it comes to socializing and sharing with others, and that’s okay. However, the more a client pushes him- or herself to engage, the more likely they are to benefit from the session.
  • Share. Even if a client feels that nobody cares about their problems or they have nothing useful to share with the group, chances are this is not consistent with reality. Everybody has something to share with others, and helping others has a funny way of helping you as well.