Couples Therapy Inc. Online Therapy Review

Intensive, science-based couples counseling with a hefty price tag

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Couples Therapy Inc. Review

Couples Therapy Inc.

Couples Therapy Inc. provides intensive, science-based therapy based on The Gottman Method. Couples work toward results within a set time frame—either during a weekend intensive or over a three-month period. The organization also offers “hopeful spouse” counseling for those seeking therapy to improve their relationship without their partner.

  • Pros & Cons
  • Key Facts
Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Highly qualified providers trained in The Gottman Method or emotionally focused therapy (EFT)

  • Clear timeline: weekend retreat intensive or three months of therapy

  • You choose your therapist

  • Can pay per session

  • Two free consultations to help pick a therapist

  • Will work with individuals in addition to couples

  • Free therapy course available

Cons
  • Very expensive, especially for weekend retreats

  • No financial aid or package deals

  • Website doesn’t highlight diverse clients

  • Doesn’t take insurance

  • No medication management or treatment of mental health conditions

  • Limited information on privacy

Key Facts
Price
Weekend retreats starting at $3,500; 80-minute sessions at $150-275
Is Insurance Accepted?
No
Type Of Therapy
Couples Therapy
Communication Options
Video Chat
HIPAA Compliant?
N/A
Is There an App?
Yes
Why Trust Us
55
Companies reviewed
5,775
Total users surveyed
350
Data points analyzed
We surveyed 105 users from each online therapy company and asked the companies to complete questionnaires. Then, we tested the services ourselves, conducted comprehensive data collection research, and evaluated our results with the help of three licensed therapists.

Research shows that only about 37% of couples considering divorce go to counseling before finalizing. However, couples counseling and relationship education have been proven to be effective in improving communication between couples, addressing difficult problems in the relationship, and providing couples with the tools to move forward together or break up on the best terms. Whether you are in the process of separating or want to strengthen your relationship going forward, couples counseling can help you and your partner make the best choices for you and your family.

Couples Therapy Inc. aims to work with people who have major relationship challenges to help them determine whether or how their relationship can be improved. The service also offers premarital counseling. To find out about the benefits and drawbacks of Couples Therapy Inc., we surveyed 105 users about their experience with the service. We asked three subject matter experts about their professional opinions on the service. We also spent hours analyzing the company’s website to learn about its procedures and offerings.

What Is Couples Therapy Inc.? 

Couples Therapy Inc. was founded by Kathy McMahon, PsyD, an adjunct professor of clinical psychology at Antioch University New England, in 1988 after she received ineffective counseling that contributed to the end of her marriage. After that experience, she wanted to help other couples access more effective support.  

Today, the Boston-based company has an emphasis on empirically proven approaches to therapy on a concise timeline. Its providers are trained in either The Gottman Method or emotionally focused therapy (EFT), both of which have been studied extensively and shown to be effective. 

In 2021, Verywell Mind named Couples Therapy Inc. the pick for best overall online premarital counseling. We still like this service, but with some significant caveats, including the hefty price tag and lack of diverse representation on the website. 

What Services Does Couples Therapy Inc. Offer?

Couples Therapy Inc. offers two approaches to therapy: in-person retreats where you do intense therapy over two and a half days, or a three-month window for sessions, which can be completed over video chat or in person. 

It is focused on addressing relationship challenges so most services are targeted toward couples. However, the company also offers “hopeful spouse coaching,” or “couples counseling for one.” Its counseling sessions can help address:

  • Premarital issues
  • Relationship enrichment
  • Communication and skills building
  • “Last shot” couples counseling
  • Affair recovery
  • Discernment counseling for those considering divorce

During intensive retreats, couples spend one evening and two seven-and-half-hour days in therapy sessions. At the retreat, one therapist will work with you and your partner throughout the weekend. If a retreat is not possible for you, you can schedule sessions at your convenience during a three-month window.

Couples Therapy Inc. has more than 30 providers. All of them have some training with the Gottman Method, and some are certified Gottman therapists (there are only about 450 of those in the world). Others have advanced training in EFT. Ninety percent of users surveyed rated their therapist’s qualifications as good, very good, or excellent. 

Who Is Couples Therapy Inc. For?

Couples Therapy Inc. is for couples who have a true willingness to work on their relationship. It’s targeted toward people who are able to invest time, money, and emotional energy into therapy. 

“I believe this service would be effective if utilized by a committed and engaged couple,” says psychotherapist Nicholas Hardy, PhD, LCSW. That couple doesn’t have to be married, either: 21% of users we surveyed identified as single and never married. 

Treatment modules that target specific needs—like affair recovery or communication—make the treatment especially effective, Hardy says. It can even work for couples that want to divorce conscientiously, using the discernment counseling service. 

However, “people from diverse backgrounds should do additional research before signing up for Couples Therapy Inc.,” says Amy Marschall, PsyD, a clinical psychologist. The vast majority of the couples on the site present as White, heterosexual, and monogamous, and the Gottman Method itself was primarily researched using only White, heterosexual, and monogamous couples. 

“I would recommend couples that are not White, cisgender, and heterosexual look into the organization a bit more thoroughly to ensure it is a fit before registering,” Marschall says. 

Diversity is also a concern for Hardy, who points out that the clinicians listed are almost all White-presenting. “I do not believe this service is fit for diverse couples,” he says. 

The site does mention “gay and lesbian couples therapy.” However, there is not much focus on other LGBTQIA+ identities throughout the site. 

Couples Therapy Inc. may also not be a good fit for people who are neurodiverse, or a couple in which one member is neurodiverse. About 20% of users we surveyed identify as neurodiverse, and McMahon, the founder and president of the company, says that working with neurodiverse clients, including those with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and attention deficit disorder (ADD) is a specialty area. But there are some clear signs that this might not be the best choice for neurodiverse people.

For example, McMahon still uses the term “Asperger” in her bio. That term no longer appears in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5-TR), and is considered offensive by many with ASD due to Dr. Hans Asperger’s association with Nazi Germany

So If you or your partner identify as neurodiverse, ask about this during your free consultations. That will help you decide whether Couples Therapy Inc. is a good fit for your particular situation. 

The price of the services (more on that below) might also make the service simply too expensive for many Americans. Couples Therapy Inc. is also not a good fit for relationships that are impacted by severe mental illness, substance use disorder, or violence, according to the website. 

How Much Does Couples Therapy Inc. Cost?

Couples Therapy Inc. is more expensive than many other counseling services. Weekend retreats start at $3,500 (not including accommodations, travel, or food). Therapy sessions (80 minutes) cost $150 to $275 or more. 

“This service is definitely niche and geared toward the wealthy or generally well-off,” says Hannah Owens, LMSW, a subject-matter expert. 

Only 60% of users we surveyed said that Couples Therapy Inc. was affordable. And yet, 90% said that the service was a good value for the money. However, 16% of people who are not still pursuing therapy with the company said it’s because it was too expensive to continue. 

The organization does not offer sliding scale payments or financial aid. The website directs people who are not able to pay up front to use a credit card or PayPal to distribute payments. 

The company acknowledges on its site that it is expensive. However, it argues that given the quality of the therapists and the limited timeframe for therapy, the cost is lower in the long run than less effective forms of therapy. In one blunt example, it encourages couples to compare the cost of counseling to the cost of retaining a divorce attorney.

Still, this is a service that “most Americans would struggle to afford,” says Owens. 

Does Couples Therapy Inc. Take Insurance?

No, Couples Therapy Inc. does not take insurance. 

The site explains that modern medical billing and insurance codes don't allow counselors to pay for couples counseling using insurance since there is no diagnostic code for marital distress. 

Does Couples Therapy Inc. Offer Discounts?

Couples Therapy Inc. doesn’t advertise any discounts. However, one blog post mentions that some therapists may choose to give discounts of 5% to 20% if you book a package of 6 to 12 sessions. It’s not clear when this post was published or how widely available the discount is. There’s no mention of discounts for weekend retreats. 

Navigating the Couples Therapy Inc. Website

The website for Couples Therapy Inc. can be a bit difficult to navigate. The homepage opens with a claim that the service is effective and comprehensive. The headline photo is of a smiling, White, heterosexual-presenting couple. A brief paragraph outlines the service before directing visitors to a quiz about their relationship. 

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Continuing to scroll, you’ll come to a section about the therapists. This section emphasizes the Gottman training and years of experience of the providers. A map to the right of this section shows that Couples Therapy Inc. is available in every state except Rhode Island, Delaware, Mississippi, Louisiana, the Dakotas, Wyoming, and Montana, and services are pending in Michigan.

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Midway down the homepage, a section details the services of Couples Therapy Inc., including affair recovery, premarital counseling, “last shot counseling,” and communication skills. After that, a lengthy section introduces "The BIG BIG Book,” an assessment that couples complete before beginning therapy. 

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Client testimonials feature heavily on the homepage.The website emphasizes the outcomes and strengths of the program, but details like costs, insurance coverage, and time frame can be difficult to find. The site often directs people to submit a form or call for more information. 

At the end of the homepage is an FAQ section addressing location, price, and religious affiliation (there isn’t one). While this is helpful information, it’s a bit hidden since the homepage is so long, and a user must scroll entirely to the bottom to see this information. 

Does Couples Therapy Inc. Have an App?

No, there is no app for Couples Therapy Inc. 

How Do You Sign Up for Therapy at Couples Therapy Inc.?

There is no way to immediately sign up for therapy at Couples Therapy Inc. Unlike other online services that aim to match you quickly, Couple Therapy Inc. provides a personalized, boutique approach to therapy. That begins with the sign-up process, which is overseen by the administrative team.

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The simplest way to sign up is to click the “contact” button on the website. This will take you to another page that emphasizes the service is about “real people, not algorithms.” Clicking that will take you to a form that asks for your full name, email, location, the type of service you’re interested in (including “just looking for general information”), and whether you’re willing to travel. 

You submit the form by clicking a button that says “request a meet and greet.” 

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From there, a member of the administrative team will reach out to you for a 15-minute phone call. You’ll discuss your needs and which therapists might be a fit (you can review therapist bios ahead of time here). That team member will then connect you with the therapist you’re interested in working with for a free consultation. 

Alternatively, you can click “book now” on a provider’s profile. This takes you to the same initial intake form, and kickstarts the same booking process. 

Most often, you’ll get a response within 24 hours of completing the intake form, according to the website. 

Before your first session, you and your partner will each be asked to complete “The BIG BIG Book,” a thorough evaluation focused on you individually and within the relationship. The book is sent after you schedule your session. The site is not specific about how long it takes to complete the evaluation, just that it may take “several hours.” The site implies that it is a significant time investment, but essential to the therapy process. 

Among users we surveyed, 78% said the sign-up process was very easy or easy. In addition, 63% said information was clear up front, while 26% said some things weren’t entirely clear until they signed up. 

Choosing a Therapist at Couples Therapy Inc. 

After you reach out to the administrative staff, they’ll help identify therapists that are licensed to work in your state. They’ll also guide you to therapists experienced with situations similar to your needs. The client services manager has taken Gottman Level I training in order to be better equipped to help you find a therapist that’s a good match. That seems to work: 87% of users said that the company was good at connecting them to a therapist.

Ultimately, you will have a big say in what therapist you work with. Most users (66%) said that finding a therapist was easy or very easy; in the majority of cases, users considered two to three therapists before choosing one to work with. Our survey users reported that in 82% of cases the therapist met all or most of their needs. 

Percentages

How Do Therapy Sessions Work at Couples Therapy, Inc.?

When you speak with the client services team, you’ll discuss whether you’re interested in in-person or virtual video therapy. These are the only two options available from Couples Therapy Inc. The company does not offer phone-based, chat, or message services. 

There are two main approaches to therapy: intensive retreats or online video counseling sessions scheduled during a three-month period. 

Couples Therapy Retreats

Couples therapy retreats are the main focus at Couples Therapy Inc. If you opt for a retreat, you and your partner will work closely with a therapist over the course of two and a half days, most often on weekends. You will be doing intensive therapy; there are no group sessions or other socialization. It’s simply between the couple and the therapist. 

The retreats are offered at different locations around the country. A therapist may travel to you, or you might travel to them. Retreats have a starting price of $3,500. That is just for therapy. It does not include the cost of travel or accommodation. 

The company claims that because the retreats offer the chance for intensive work, they allow couples to make faster progress by focusing just on each other. Follow-up therapy is available after the retreat on a case-by-case basis. 

Per-Session Couples Counseling

The other option for therapy is booking session by session. Couples Therapy Inc. calls this option the “three-month window.” There’s limited information on this option available on the website. It’s not clear how often during the three months you will meet with your therapist, for example, or what happens if you need continuing counseling after three months. 

What Happens If I Miss a Session at Couples Therapy Inc.?

There’s no cancellation or missed appointment policy listed on the website for Couples Therapy Inc. It’s likely that the cancellation policy will be determined by the individual therapist that you’re working with. 

Switching Therapists at Couples Therapy Inc.

In many cases, people who use Couples Therapy Inc. stay with the same therapist throughout their time. In fact, 64% of users say they’ve only worked with one therapist. 

Part of that may be logistics: if you’re booking a weekend retreat, you’re committing to intensive therapy with one provider. 

However, 19% of users switched therapists once, and 17% switched more than once. The company doesn’t make it clear how changes are handled. It’s likely that you work with the same administrative team that matched you to your therapist in the first place. 

Pausing or Canceling Therapy at Couples Therapy Inc. 

Couples Therapy Inc. sets up services for a distinct amount of time. For example, if you do a weekend retreat, you’re only committing to three days. And despite its name, committing to the “three-month window” involves purchasing sessions one by one, which gives you a lot of flexibility. Because there are no subscriptions, canceling should be straightforward. 

Quality of Care and User Satisfaction

People who use Couples Therapy Inc. seem to have a positive experience: in fact, 90% of people surveyed said their experience was excellent, good or very good. Most people (67%) said they heard about the service through a friend or family member, suggesting that those who have used the company are satisfied enough to recommend it to others. In addition, 83% of users we surveyed said they were likely or very likely to recommend Couples Therapy Inc. to a friend, and 75% said they would use the company again themselves. 

In addition, the company is respected within the industry thanks to the qualifications and training of its providers and the focus on empirically proven treatment approaches. Eighty-two percent of users found a therapist who met most or all of their needs, and 80% were satisfied or very satisfied with the therapists listed. 

“They have a solid reputation in the mental health field, and they implement treatments with evidence backing,” Marschall says. 

Users also seemed to find Couples Therapy Inc. effective. In our survey, 30% said they achieved all of their therapeutic goals. Another 19% said they felt like they no longer needed therapy because they were feeling better. Ninety percent said their therapists’ qualifications were good, very good, or excellent.

While the company is focused on supporting healthy relationships, it also is realistic about the fact that not all couples will stay together. This, combined with the various approaches to therapy, means that the company can provide services in a variety of circumstances, Marschall says. 

“They offer services focused both on ‘recovery’ and on ‘discernment,’ or determining whether recovery is the best choice for that couple,” she notes. “They additionally offer a variety of services, including intensive retreats, which I think is a good option as couples can choose services based on their goals, priorities, and availability.”

Percentages

Privacy Policies at Couples Therapy Inc. 

Couples Therapy Inc. updated its privacy policy in 2021. The site collects, stores, and sometimes shares some personal information, including identifiers and internet activity. 

In addition, before you can get in-depth information about the services that Couples Therapy Inc. provides, you must fill out a form that asks for your full name. 

Previously, the company told Verywell that it “follow[s] industry standards for privacy.” Information on compliance with HIPAA (the federal law protecting personal health information) isn’t available on the site.

Couples Therapy Inc. vs. Competitors

Couples Therapy Inc. is different from many of its competitors in the online therapy space, as its  main focus is on in-person retreats. If that doesn’t work for you, Couples Therapy Inc. offers virtual counseling sessions. Overall, the service is very expensive, with intensive weekend sessions costing thousands of dollars. In our survey, 41% of users said the service was not at all affordable, not very affordable, or somewhat affordable. And yet, 90% said Couples Therapy Inc. provided good, very good or excellent value for the money. 

Like Couples Therapy Inc, ReGain and Queer Couples Center also offer therapy to couples. Queer Couples Center offers video-based sessions, comparable to the video sessions at Couples Therapy Inc. Unlike Couples Therapy Inc., Queer Couples Center does not have an in-person therapy option. Along with video and audio sessions, ReGain also offers text-based therapy, where users write about their experiences and get a written reply from a therapist. 

ReGain costs $90 to $120 a week, which is payable monthly. The service can be stopped at any time. Notably, while you must provide payment information, the service does not ask for a legal name or contact information, so participants are able to stay anonymous if they wish. That’s not the case with Couples Therapy Inc. 

Queer Couples Center directs potential users to call for a consultation and does not have information on pricing or anonymity available online; however, Queer Couples Center informs potential clients that they must have at least $2,000 available up front to spend on therapy, suggesting that the cost of its services might be as prohibitive as Couples Therapy Inc.’s.

Of these services, users appear to be the most satisfied with Couples Therapy Inc. Of those who used the site, 90% said they had a positive experience, and 82% said their provider met all or most of their needs. Only 73% of users of Queer Couples Center reported a positive overall experience, and 68% had a provider that met all or most of their needs. Among users of ReGain, 77% had an overall positive experience and 80% found a provider that met all or most of their needs. 

Final Verdict

Couples Therapy Inc. is different from many online therapy options. Although the company has a web presence, its approach is similar to traditional therapy practices: collecting information about your needs and matching you with a therapist for in-person or video therapy. 

The service has many strong points. It’s widely available, and its therapists are highly qualified in scientifically proven approaches to couples therapy. The company has a focus on results and offers therapy for a limited time frame. The idea is that you’ll get what you need—to strengthen your relationship or decide to leave it—quickly, thanks to an effective approach to therapy facilitated by experienced clinicians. 

“The organization seems to have a well-vetted process, with specific outcomes they are helping clients to accomplish,” Hardy says. "Also, they are specific in identifying who they serve, and who would most benefit from their services. This allows potential clients a real opportunity to see if they are a good fit or not.”

Couples Therapy Inc. does have some downsides, including its price tag. The intensive approach to therapy, especially the retreats, are too expensive for many people. In addition, the company’s website has little representation of people of color and LGBTQIA+ couples. “If someone from a minority group was exploring this site, they would have limited options,” Hardy says. 

People who have used Couples Therapy Inc. are happy with the service, according to our survey. I would recommend this service for those who have the means to afford it. While the service is expensive, the qualifications of the providers and the limited-time approach to therapy make it appealing for those looking for real solutions to their marital challenges. 

Methodology

To fairly and accurately review the best online therapy programs, we sent questionnaires to 55 companies and surveyed 105 current users of each. This allowed us to directly compare services offered by gathering qualitative and quantitative data about each company and its users’ experiences.

Specifically, we evaluated each company on the following factors: website usability, the sign-up and therapist matching processes, therapist qualifications, types of therapy offered, the service's quality of care, client-therapist communication options, session length, subscription offerings, client privacy protections, average cost and value for money, whether it accepts insurance, how easy it is to change therapists, overall user satisfaction, and the likelihood that clients would recommend them.

Then, we worked with three subject matter experts to get their expert analysis on how suited this company is to provide quality care to therapy seekers. 

2 Sources
Verywell Mind uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. The Gottmann Institute. Is it time to go to couples counseling?.

  2. Schofield MJ, Mumford N, Jurkovic D, Jurkovic I, Bickerdike A. Short and long-term effectiveness of couple counselling: a study protocol. BMC Public Health. 2012;12(1):735. doi:10.1186/1471-2458-12-735

Edited by
Hannah Owens
Hannah Owens

Hannah Owens is the Mental Health/General Health Editor for performance marketing at Verywell. She is a licensed social worker with clinical experience in community mental health.

Learn about our editorial process
and
Simone Scully
simone-scully-verywell

Simone is the health editorial director for performance marketing at Verywell. She has over a decade of experience as a professional journalist covering mental health, chronic conditions, medicine, and science.

Learn about our editorial process