Introducing Megan Baker, MA IMFT – our Marriage and Family Therapist Intern here at Early Child Development Associates. She does Individual and Couples Therapy and is a Child Specialist.
Megan Baker, M.A., I.M.F.T
Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy is a unique form of short-term and collaborative therapy designed to help shift the negative interactional positions of a couple by replacing them with more positive patterns allowing for partners to create a more secure bond.
EFT has its roots in John Bowlby’s attachment theory. He posited that every child needs an attachment figure/figures that will be there when they need them. Adults have similar attachment needs as they feel more secure when they know that their partner is responsive and emotionally available.
In a partnership where individuals are physically present but emotionally unavailable, the connection gets lost. Distressed partners then become desperate to pursue or persuade the other to become more responsive. Unfortunately, the response is often negative which perpetuates the negative interactional cycle.
The primary goal of EFT is to help each partner observe and come to understand how their own behavior feeds the cycle and how to stop triggering their partner’s reactions. Partners have the opportunity to explore and focus on their own primary attachment needs and emotions.
When partners have a safe connection, each partner becomes a source of protection and comfort for the other. Partners also gain a greater ability to assist the other in regulating negative emotions and building a stronger and more positive sense of self.
Megan Baker, M.A., Marriage and Family Therapist Intern
Summarized from “The Practice of Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy: Creating Connection.” Susan M. Johnson (2004).