Leading Authority in Treatment of Narcissism and Emotional Abuse

Marriage Intensives

The Value of Marriage Intensives

Dr. David B Hawkins, Licensed Clinical Psychologist and Director of The Marriage Recovery Center talks about the value of Marriage Intensives and what you can expect from  them.

The Value of Marriage Intensives: Transforming Crisis into Connection

Marriage is a journey filled with ups and downs, joy and challenges. For those who find themselves in the midst of a marriage crisis, the path forward can be daunting. The traditional model of one hour a week in marriage counseling may feel like a drop in the ocean, making progress seem painfully slow. However, there is hope on the horizon in the form of Marriage Intensives – a transformative approach that can help couples move from crisis to connection in just a matter of days.

In this article, we will delve into the concept of Marriage Intensives, exploring their structure, the benefits they offer, and why they may be the lifeline you and your partner need to rebuild a healthy and loving relationship.

The Problem with Traditional Counseling

Traditional marriage counseling typically involves weekly sessions, usually lasting an hour. While these sessions are undoubtedly valuable and can provide a safe space for couples to communicate and work on their issues, they may fall short when faced with more complex and deep-rooted problems. Picture it like trying to fill a massive five-gallon barrel with water using an eyedropper; it’s a slow and often frustrating process.

The Marriage Recovery Center recognizes this issue and has developed a solution: Marriage Intensives. These Intensives offer a concentrated and highly effective approach to address marriage crises head-on, enabling couples to move beyond their issues and into a space of healthy connection.

Understanding Marriage Intensives

A Marriage Intensive is a multi-day program that involves spending concentrated blocks of time working on your relationship. These intensive sessions can last for two, three, or even five days, depending on the specific needs and issues within your marriage. This approach allows for an in-depth exploration of the underlying problems and offers a structured pathway toward healing and reconnection.

Let’s take a closer look at what a typical Marriage Intensive entails.

Day 1: Understanding the Disconnect

On the first day of a Marriage Intensive, you and your partner will arrive at the Marriage Recovery Center. The initial half of the day is dedicated to understanding the dynamics of your relationship. This involves asking numerous questions and reviewing the material you’ve provided beforehand. The goal is to pinpoint the root causes of your disconnection and what is required to rebuild a healthy and loving connection.

The intensive aims to lay the foundation for a healthy relationship by identifying and addressing self-defeating patterns that may be obstructing your path to happiness. The objective is clear: creating a thriving and loving relationship, which involves identifying the unhealthy ways you relate to each other.

Day 2: Building Skills for Connection

With a comprehensive understanding of your relationship’s challenges, the second day of the Marriage Intensive shifts focus to skill-building. You will be introduced to a program and manual that offers tools to move from a state of brokenness to healthy relating and connection. This manual serves as a valuable resource that you can revisit and delve into repeatedly.

The Marriage Recovery Center takes an active interest in your progress. They teach you essential skills, such as communication, conflict resolution, and intimacy building. These are the tools you will take away from the Intensive, and during the second day, you’ll put these skills into practice, continuously connecting and, most importantly, recognizing the moments of disconnect. These critical junctures are identified as “the shift,” where defensive reactions can occur. Recognizing these shifts is the first step towards eliminating self-defeating patterns and replacing them with relationship-enhancing behaviors.

Day 3: Achieving Healthy Connection

As the Marriage Intensive progresses into the third day, you’ve gained valuable insights into your disconnect patterns and acquired essential skills. At this stage, the focus shifts towards strengthening your connection and fostering intimacy. By now, the specialists leading the program understand the ways you disconnect and the specific skills and tools you require to reconnect.

Through a process of guidance and practical exercises, by the end of the third day, you’ll find yourself genuinely connected. This is a pivotal moment, where intimacy is reignited, and your self-confidence is restored. Moving from a place of hopelessness to hope is a transformative experience, and the Marriage Intensive is designed to facilitate that transition.

Customized Intensives for Unique Needs

It’s important to note that the Marriage Recovery Center offers flexibility in the duration of the Intensive, recognizing that not all couples face the same challenges. Depending on the complexity and depth of your issues, you can opt for a two-day, three-day, or five-day Intensive. There is no shame in acknowledging that you need more intensive help. In fact, it’s a sign of commitment to your relationship’s well-being.

In a marriage Intensive, you and your partner will work closely with skilled and trained clinicians who have extensive experience in helping couples navigate through crises and reconnect. Their high success rate is a testament to their commitment and expertise, making the Marriage Recovery Center a trustworthy resource for couples in need.


Marriage is a beautiful journey, but it can also be challenging. When couples find themselves in a marriage crisis, it’s essential to have access to effective and efficient resources. Traditional counseling, while valuable, may not always provide the depth and speed of intervention required. Marriage Intensives offer a concentrated approach to address issues, providing tools and guidance to help couples reconnect and rebuild their relationships.

The Marriage Recovery Center’s Marriage Intensives are a structured and comprehensive way to move from crisis to connection. By understanding the root causes of disconnection, building essential skills, and fostering a healthy connection, couples can leave the Intensive with newfound self-confidence and hope for a better future together.

So, if you’re in a marriage crisis and seeking specific and intensive help, Marriage Intensives might just be the lifeline you need to reignite the spark in your relationship and build a healthier, more loving connection. Trust in the experts, invest in your relationship, and take that first step towards a brighter future together.

To learn how we can help, reach out to us at (206) 219-0145 or info@marriagerecoverycenter.com to speak with a Client Care Specialist

Also read: Are You In A Narcissistic Relationship?

About Dr. Hawkins:

The internet is inundated with hyperbole and misinformation about narcissism, leaving many people confused and hopeless. Get the facts on narcissism and emotional abuse from someone who has been researching, writing about and treating narcissism and emotional abuse for over a decade.

Dr. Hawkins is a best-selling author and clinical psychologist with over three decades of experience helping people break unhealthy patterns and build healthier relationships.

He is the founder and director of the Marriage Recovery Center and the Emotional Abuse Institute which offers education, training and counseling for people who want to break free of, and heal from, emotional abuse. Whether the perpetrator of the abuse is your spouse, partner, parent, boss, friend or family member, we offer practical advice for anyone trapped in a toxic, destructive relationship.

In addition to narcissism & emotional abuse, you’ll learn about the lesser known forms of abuse, including covert abuse, reactive abuse, spiritual abuse, secondary abuse, relationship trauma and much more.


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