Kellie Shamenski

pronouns she/her

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Approach to Relationships

It can be challenging to decide when and if it is time to seek professional guidance to improve your relationship. In addition, what does it really mean to improve one’s relationship? What does a healthy relationship even look like? 
A healthy partnership is one in which there are consistent and ongoing experiences of intimacy, connection, and security. Some of us have grown up witnessing a very close intimate relationship between our parents while many others have not. 


Our early role models may have given us an idea of what ‘worked for them’ or experience of what definitely did not work for them, as many of us have experienced divorce in our early years. The way we know to express our needs and have them met may be more individual, rather than relational. Meaning, we have developed strategies designed to protect ourselves at the expense of connecting with our partners. We may suppress our needs and passively withdraw or conversely, express ourselves using criticism, judgement and contempt. We may feel unappreciated, devalued and unseen by our partner. Or that our partner should know our underlying needs and be able to meet them without having to discuss them. Many of these strategies for getting our needs met unfortunately do not work well in our partnerships and have led to hurt, anger and frustration within the relationship. 

The sense of connection and security that comes from having a secure relationship with our partner affects every aspect of our lives, including our self-esteem, our response to stress and our outlook on the future. Having the courage to look inward and work with your partner on this journey can be the most rewarding one yet.

Couples Therapy with Kellie focuses on:

  • understanding negative interactive patterns that can become habitual responses
  • becoming mindful of how these patterns are maintained, become rigid and inflexible 
  • discovering the underlying attachment and primary needs of each partner and how to express these needs to each other in a respectful way
  • learning new skills that encourage intimacy and emotional risk-taking 
  • learning to cultivate and display empathy to your partner, even when it’s difficult
Vancouver Location
404-999 Canada Pl.
In-person and Online Appointments 
Thursday

Book Online