Tfor2 is for couples who want to journey deeper with emotional intimacy; who are struggling with proactively loving one another; or who may be contemplating separation or divorce. Tfor2 is a practice that will support each of you in accessing and offering your truth in ways that may create, restore, and/or deepen emotional intimacy.
Perhaps your relationship is generally healthy, but you want to enrich it with cultivating EQ (emotional intelligence). Alternately, there may be struggles with feeling mutual respect, or the tension may have already escalated to a place of persistent discomfort. If you are contemplating separation or divorce, this is likely a stressful time as you and your partner move through the unknown. You may be in crisis.
I have no attachment to the outcome of your relationship. My only commitment is to give you tools to access presence, truth, vulnerability, and emotional intimacy, so that you and your partner can make a more informed decision and navigate your relationship in an enlivening, connective way. I will be your ally in this process.
~Tfor2 creates a practice space for vulnerability and Presence.
~Tfor2 provides a portal to the present moment. When we can access the present moment, we can be present with ourselves and with each other. Within that presence, happiness--and the full spectrum of raw emotion--is possible.
~Tfor2 helps us access our essence and remember ourselves.
~Tfor2 supports us with working with energy, instead of against it. We learn how to track what's alive within ourselves; what's alive within our partner; and how both are co-creating the relationship's dynamic or "energy baby".
~Tfor2 may support accessing suppressed libido, and recharge the battery of the ultimate communication tool: sex. By sharing candidly and being witnessed, attunement and arousal may come online. This is not a guarantee, and it may (or may not) happen well after our work together. It will also depend on what other personal development you have done / are doing. But what I know in my bones from lived experience: expressing our truth and being seen awakens creative energy. And creative energy = sexual energy.
How It Works
I will teach a process to effectively share our moment to moment experiences of each other, and the impacts they have. We each offer transparency of our experience, naming phenomenon that are rarely named, yet are the building blocks of relationship dynamics. During our sessions, I will at times be a participant and other times be a facilitator. We will collaborate to discover blindspots; name patterns; share vulnerability. We will slow down and watch how the relationship’s walls are built and melted. I will offer a powerful tool, model it, and teach you how to use it in service of your relationship, regardless of its outcome. You will explore precisely how your words and actions trigger emotional responses in your partner. We adventure through the co-created moments. We will NOT dissect the past; the past is allowed brief entry only when it is impacting the emotion of this here moment. Instead, we will explore this moment, the one here right now, which is the only one that really matters.
The T stands for Truth. We approach the work with an understanding that each of us has our own truth. When that truth is accessed and expressed, then seen / felt / heard, emotional intimacy is available. Aliveness can emerge, and transformation can occur.
Tfor2 is for the couple that wants to turn toward the heart of their truth, and experience the crackle of its revelation.
12 sessions minimum, with option to continue. There is a minimum of 12 sessions because it's a powerful practice that requires skill for efficacy. We do a deep dive, and it's transformational work. If it's not a good match, we can assess that after the first session and discontinue.
The first session is 2 hours. Subsequent sessions are 1.5 hours.
If you are already interested, please contact me here. Or...read on!
Is This Therapy?
No, but it can be therapeutic because of my training as an occupational therapist. Tfor2 is primarily a hybrid of coaching and T-group. The emphasis is on deep diving into the present moment via T-group format. My facilitation will include reflection, direction, coaching, some psychobiological education to share the science and theory of what's happening. There will also be some opportunity for processing, as well as doing complementary work through homework (or "om-work") and empowerment practices that are customized for your unique dynamic.
Can two people who are not a couple benefit from Tfor2?
Yes. Tfor2 is a modality for exploring closeness and relationship. You do not have to be a romantic couple; friends and family members can also benefit. Tfor2 is appropriate for any two people who would like to lean into exploring what, precisely, connects and divides them. Possible outcomes include healing, greater understanding, and personal growth. I facilitate a process to open the portals; you do the work.
Where do sessions take place?
As we move through COVID, sessions will take place online via Zoom. Ideally, each person should use their own computer so that we occupy equal amounts of space in the Zoom Room. Zoom can be very connective. Each person's experience of Zoom is unique. In my experience, there is parity between meeting in person and meeting via Zoom; rich connection is very possible.
Tfor2 is a specialized form of T-group 2.0, which is an evolution of T-Group developed by Crystallin Dillon. I am calling it Tfor2 because it’s centered around you, the couple, instead of a larger group. The practice is very similar to T-group 2.0, but facilitated to focus on you, your partner, and the “energy baby” of your relationship. Depending upon what surfaces in session, I may offer optional, customized empowerment practices for you individually or as a couple (homework or personal development activities) to do outside of our sessions.
In 2008, I had been with my ex-husband and coparent, we'll call him Chris, for 8 years and we had just had a baby. Amidst a generally joyful partnership, neither of us had done the personal growth work to equip us with intimacy skills required during challenging times in relationship. I didn't know it then, but my absence of emotional intimacy skills, and intimacy with my shadow, had lead to a nonexistent libido, which had frustratingly been offline for several years.
After having a child, I experienced post partum depression. I didn’t know how to communicate my experience effectively, and found myself angry toward several years of repressed relationship issues that I had been complicit in sweeping under the rug. Instead of owning my experience, taking responsibility for it, and sharing it in a way that could connect us, I found myself feeling tremendous anger and blaming Chris. In addition, I was experiencing a parallel dark night of the soul with spiritual awakening that demanded I change careers. I was not turning out to be who I thought I would be.
Confusingly, my libido was coming back online, but in ways I did not understand. (I do now, but it took several years.) My internal landscape was chaotic, and I was vomiting my pain unskillfully, furious that Chris could not hold space for me as I was molting, amidst his best efforts.
We sought help from two couples therapists. The first didn’t take any risks with us. She seemed hesitant to name what she clearly saw. We didn’t feel loved or supported by her. The second one took risks. She shared her observations. There was an authenticity and willingness to name difficult truths. She reflected to us, “Your relationship hasn’t been seasoned”—a simple share that resonated so profoundly that it stays with me, 12 years later. I appreciated the risk she took with sharing her perception, and it felt true.
We had a long separation (several years) then finally a calm divorce.
In 2017, I attended my first T-group 2.0. By then, I had done an substantial amount of personal growth work. I had studied Language Alchemy (a hybrid of Nonviolent Communication with nondual philosophy, with more room for shadow work), extensive yoga and western psychology. I had gone to graduate school and become an occupational therapist specializing in mental health for people with trauma. I’d been in different relationships, learning more about myself and intimacy in each one. So when I walked into my first T-group,2.0, I already had a sparkling toolbelt. Yet the practice blew me away. Its simplicity and power; the transparency and access to multiple truths, was astonishing. Sitting in circle with people, sharing our moment to moment emotions and experiences of each other, was the most healing practice I had ever done. This was meditation and yoga in relationship.
I immediately started using T-group 2.0 in relationships. Initially I was unskillful with it. Since then, I have learned how to weave it in effectively, so that my partner and I can deepen emotional intimacy; name difficult truths; lean into shadow, spirit, soul. Most importantly, T-group 2.0 gave me a way to swiftly identify and name what was happening internally, and share it in a connective, responsible way.
One thing I learned is that my body would become enlivened, more sentient, and animated, each time I shared a difficult truth. It reinforced a theory I had already been developing through lived experience: expression is enlivening. When shared skillfully, it is connective, arousing, restorative. When we express and are witnessed, healing and integration occurs.
There is always risk in sharing our truth. Some truths that are scary to admit: “I want(ed) to have an affair because…” or “I love porn because…” or “I don’t like the way you smell…” These are hard to share, receive, accept. Similarly, simple emotional truths are hard to share because they require vulnerability: “I’m [sad, mad, scared]…” But the risk is greater when our challenging truths get lost in silence and fear. This is deadening for couples. When we don’t risk revealing ourselves, we take away the opportunity to be truly known. Being seen and truly known is intensely enlivening.
Fast forward to 2020. My relationship with Chris is peaceful and supportive. It took 7 years after our separation to get there. His anger melted after he embarked on some personal work, and after I learned how to skillfully share my vulnerability. Both were required to repair. Our daughter is joyful and wise, far beyond her 11 years. We three have dinner together frequently, and they both helped me come up with the name of Tfor2. I don’t know whether Tfor2 would have changed the outcome of our marriage, or whether that would have been a better direction. But there have been many times I thought that T-Group 2.0 skills would have been amazing for our relationship, so I could have amplified my self awareness; cultivated the skills to express myself more effectively; understood the nuances of our dynamic better. I’ve learned that insight + vulnerability + truth + skillful communication (silence included) = Presence. And with Presence, portals to intimacy open.