Conventional approaches begin with: What brings you here? How can I help? What are your objectives? These are great questions for individuals but they are toxic for dysfunctional couples. Their responses will get you a truckload of cross complaints. After ten minutes nobody is feeling great.
Demonstrate how therapists can understand the presenting problems without the couple blaming, shaming or guilting each other. Couples listen curiously and exchange compliments as problems are described.
Demonstrate how each partner identifies their individual objectives for being in therapy and how to deal with the inevitable resistance to achieve those goals.
*Sessions may be edited for content and to preserve confidentiality*