Irina Firstein, Individual, Marriage & Couples Counseling in NYC
My name is Irina Firstein, LCSW and I am a licensed New York City therapist providing couples therapy, marriage counseling and individual therapy to Clients throughout the 5 Boroughs of NYC from downtown to midtown to uptown (10075 area) and beyond. I’ve helped individuals and couples resolve relationship issues for over 27 years. I provide services to couples in New York who are married, who are going to get married, and anyone in a relationship who needs help. I also work with individuals on a range of personal issues including trauma, depression, anxiety, addiction as well as most other issues they may face.
What To Look For In A Therapist
Finding the best individual or couples therapist in NYC does not have to be a daunting process. A therapist should have the experience treating the type of psychological conditions you are facing, be compatible with your own personality and needs, be licensed in New York, and have a strong online presence with trust-building reviews. You should see a therapist that has the right combination of temperament, education, training and experience. Often someone with a Clinical Social Worker or LCSW background, like myself, may be the best fit, depending on the mental health issue, personal problem or challenge you want to address.
The goal of my work is to enhance and expand my client’s ability to experience a deeper connection with themselves, their partners and others. That connection is the key to physical and mental health and feeling alive.
I am open for business and taking new individual & couples therapy Clients. I have both a therapy office location in Manhattan (370 Lexington Ave #514, New York, NY 10017) and the ability to see Clients virtually. Please call (212) 953-1388 to talk or get in touch online here.
We are especially convenient to Clients near Grand Central Station which makes it easily accessible to Midtown Manhattan, all Downtown, Times Square (10018), Lower Manhattan (10007), Upper East Side (10075), Upper West Side (10024), East Village (10009), Murray Hill, Flatiron (10011), Rockland County, Westchester and all areas of New York City including Brooklyn and Queens. I do my very best to accommodate all potential clients with timely appointments.
How Therapist Irina Firstein, LCSW Will Help You
It is my belief that relationships are crucially important and without close and secure connections with others, we as human beings can not thrive in everyday life. Disruption of such connections is the reason we feel emotional pain and suffering. If you are feeling this way, I want to help you and your partner heal, grow and change your life and your relationship. Most issues that people bring to me are, inevitably, an exploration and healing of relationship trauma or disruption of connection with a significant person or people in his or her life.
Let’s get to know each other. You probably found my website by searching Marriage Counseling NYC or some other issue related to therapy for which you have a need. Now that you found me, you can email me or call my New York City Office at (212) 953-1388. Take the first step and I will begin to help you.
Whether you have been married for decades, you’re a newlywed couple or you are transitioning to become parents or retirees, a marriage counselor helps you build a better life together.
Benefits of Marriage Counseling
- Work through major life transitions together
- Resolve ongoing problems related to schedules, finances, & communication
- Release and prevent resentment
- Identifying what’s most important in your marriage
- Keep your marriage on track by minimizing conflict
- Open the flow of communication
- Learn to share and frame your feelings
- Become proactive in how you manage your relationship
- Reconnect and rekindle the romance in your marriage
Benefits of Couples Therapy
- Forge tighter, closer relationships by creating trust and safety
- Learn to talk about common points of conflict i.e. money, sex, intimacy, infidelity, children, family, etc. without escalating into fights
- Build a closer, deeper connection through willingness to be vulnerable
- Improve general communication by better listening with more empathy and care about the other
- Learn to discuss problems without falling into a negative cycle
- Learn to communicate from a more emotionally vulnerable place
- Address unresolved resentments in a way that leads to greater connection and understanding
Irina Firstein, LCSW
Licensed Couples Therapist in NY, NY
I am a licensed New York City couples therapist who provides services to individuals seeking couples therapy, marriage counseling and individual therapy for trauma, depression, anxiety, addiction as well as most other issues they may face.
My Approach To Working With Couples
While the basic approach I use in working with couples is based on Emotionally Focused Therapy, as most therapists, I bring my own personality and style into the experience as well as being in a marriage for over 20 years. I understand personally and professionally what couples are going through. I also make it my business to get training and am continuing to do so in areas that are essential to working with couples, such as sex therapy and sexuality as well as understating and treatment of trauma. I dedicate my life to the mysterious nature of relationships and what makes them work.
What To Do If Your Relationship Is In Trouble
If you are experiencing tension or trouble in your relationship or relationships, you may be feeling rejection, abandonment, lack of empathy, disappointment, hopelessness and helplessness, shame, and many other feelings. These are common human experiences that traumatize all of us and become symptoms that are manifested by depression, anxiety, addictions, health problems and all other symptoms and illnesses. If you feel that you need advice, work with a compassionate couples & marriage therapist–someone who will really listen to you and provide you with the marriage and couples counseling that the relationship you care about most needs. Work with me. I have helped thousands of individuals and couples both emotionally and spiritually.
New York City-based Therapist, Irina Firstein has discussed several topics such as pre-marital counseling and her philosophy on individual and relationship therapy in the Daily News, About.com, CNN, Forbes, and more.
What Happens in Therapy Sessions?
If it’s your first time, you may have a sense of trepidation about seeing a therapist. Rest assured there is nothing to fear. The stigma of seeing a professional therapist is a thing of the past. Why close the door to an opportunity of repairing and saving your relationship and live a fuller life?
My clients consider me a straight-forward and active therapist, and this is what you can expect in our sessions. As a result, most of my referrals come from past and existing clients. I have spent my professional career learning and searching for the root causes of human suffering and the issues that divide couples and strain relationships. I utilize the most efficient, effective and innovative ways to help my clients. To this end I use â€œold schoolâ€ proven therapeutic modalities as well as the latest research and cutting edge techniques, such as EMDR and EFT.
Also, in my job as a couples counselor, I help couples close the gap between where they are right now and where they want to be. I also provide counseling and therapy sessions to Russian-speaking clients. If you are looking for a Russian Speaking Therapist near you, contact Irina Firstein, LCSW. Sessions are available in person, by phone or by via Skype/Zoom.
As a Couples Therapist and an Individual Therapist, I will give you all the information, tools and assistance you need to get relief from pain and to find connection.
For an Appointment with Irina Firstein, call (212) 953-1388.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long will couples therapy take?It is difficult to answer this question. I don’t think any experienced couples therapist can answer this question. This is an extremely individual situation. The length of the therapy depends on the severity, nature and how long the couple is dealing with presenting issues. It also depends on a couple’s motivation and each person’s ability to be honest, open and open minded to new ideas, experiences and behaviors. It is also important in my work that my couples are willing to take emotional risks with each other, meaning say and do things that are vulnerable. It is also important that there is a good fit between the couple and therapist, meaning aside from personal chemistry, each person in the couple feels understood and the couple feels the therapist “gets” them. It is important that the feedback and the interventions in the therapy sessions land well and make sense.
Do both partners need to attend every session?In the model I use, EFT (Emotionally Focused Therapy), the protocol is the first session is couple together, then second and third session each is seen individually for one session to get more personal information and to create an alliance. Then the 4th session is again together. This is not a rigid protocol in how I use it. Sometimes, depending on the situation, I will see both partners more than once together before I see them separately. Also I have occasionally seen each partner or one of the partners more than once with a consent from the other partner. Basically, the work is with the couple. The couple is my client. I will often refer one or both clients to an individual therapist if and when appropriate.
Is marriage counseling/couples therapy effective if only one partner wants to go?I really prefer to do marriage/couples therapy with both partners if at all possible. There are times when one of the partners refuses to participate. I do feel therapists need to be flexible and sometimes working with one partner and getting them to make some shifts will make a relationship better. Sometimes when this happens, the other partner is more open to joining. Though one cannot count on that. All that being said, relationship problems are best treated when both partners are present.
What if my partner doesn’t want to come to counseling, how can I get my partner to go to couples therapy?This is a tough issue. I think in my experience, there is not much that can be done. It is helpful if it can be understood what the resistance is about. Maybe it can be discussed and battled about between partners, but usually it does not help. Unfortunately, the resistant partner will agree to go to therapy when it’s too late. When they know they are about to lose their partner. This is always heartbreaking.
How does a couple prepare for couples counseling?Couples ask that often. I don’t think there is much in the way of preparation. Usually in my first session I have a plan and I ask many questions. It helps if partners have thought about and analyzed their story or have had prior therapy together or individually. It helps me if they have questions for me in terms of our process in the sessions. But basically, showing up, being honest, open and motivated is all that I hope for from the couple.
What issues can couples therapy address?Couples therapy can address all issues that are important and pertinent to the particular couple. It is very interesting that EVERY couple I meet, when I ask what brought them to me, say “COMMUNICATION PROBLEMS” unless there has been infidelity. Communication problems means nothing to me as it encompasses every issue. What they mean is that when they try to talk about something difficult, they get into a conflict. And sometimes, it’s not even something difficult. It can be totally mundane. Misunderstanding in a very plain sense, or someone gets triggered by a topic, work, gesture, look. Essentially couples come to therapy because they don’t know how to deal with conflict. The topic is not that important to me. It’s how they get into their negative cycle and where they get stuck. And then, of course, there is sex. Which can also be a communication problem but in a sexual area.
How much does couples therapy cost in NYC?The cost of couples therapy or marriage counseling can vary. Some of the factors that affect cost include the therapist’s experience, specialization, type of therapy, session duration, and therapy location.
Is marriage counseling only for those on the brink of divorce?I should hope couples therapy is not only for those on the brink of divorce. In fact, those can be the toughest couples to help because they are too far along in their disconnect and estrangement. The sooner people come for help, before the resentments are solidified and they still have good will and care, the better outcome.
How do I go about making an appointment with you?Please email me your request or call me on my office phone #. It is helpful if you visit my website and take a look at the page about the issue you need help with. It is also helpful to look at my Practice/Fees Page. Another helpful point is to let me know what days or times work for you so I can give you the best appointment time for both of us.
Do you offer Pre-Marital Counseling services in NYC?Yes I do. The Pre-Marriage Counseling I offer is not the same as provided by religious organizations. I offer two kinds of counseling. One is a more open ended counseling to address any issues the couple is struggling with and wants to resolve or have a better handle on prior to marriage. It is usually a relationship issue. Another type is a more structured short term counseling to address specific topics a couple should discuss in a safe atmosphere, such as children and parenting ideas, finances, families of origin, where to live, friends and leisure, work/careers after baby. Also pre-marital counseling can be very helpful for those previously married as there are often issues of ex-spouses and children that need to be discussed and thought about.
Should I get Marriage Counseling/Couples Therapy?Chances are if you are asking yourself this question, the answer is YES. If you and your partner are having same fights which get more and more escalated and eventually you move on without resolution because you can’t stand the conflict, only to get into the same argument at a later time, it is a good idea to consider professional help from a marriage counselor. My sincere advice is that if this has been going on for a while and keeps happening and you feel that you are getting more and more disconnected from each other, do not wait. So many couples say to me after a session or two who should have been here 3 years ago. Sometimes, couples come in when it may be too late or the damage is so deep that it takes a long time and very hard work to re-establish connection.
What are the everyday signs that my relationship needs Marriage Counseling?My personal perspective is that you do not run to see a marriage therapist at the first sign of trouble but that it is not a good idea to have same chronic issues for a long time. If same argument or conflict comes up over and over with discussions leading to further escalation and disconnect, it would be a good idea to seek professional help. Conflicts usually do not resolve themselves; marriage counseling will provide an opportunity to hear and understand your partner, to take in their way of seeing things in a new and different way and maybe develop tolerance or empathy about your differences that may not be possible if you try to do it alone. Counseling for married couples provides a safe atmosphere and becomes a safe place to be yourself, to be seen and heard by your spouse as well as to learn to have difficult conversations.
How do we know you are the right therapist for us?I think this is a hard decision. The best suggestion I have is to visit my website and read the pages. I wrote every word of this. Also take a look at the About.com and CBS videos. They give you a true sense of me in person. Take a look at some of the articles as they truly express my views and positions on different issues pertaining to relationships. My “Connections Blog” is also a helpful resource.
FROM OUR CONNECTIONS BLOG
NYC Office Location
Irina Firstein, LCSW – Individual, Marriage & Couples Counseling NYC
Phone: (212) 953-1388
Address: 370 Lexington Ave #514, New York, NY 10017
Monday 9 AM–9 PM
Tuesday 9 AM–9 PM
Wednesday 9 AM–9 PM
Thursday 9 AM–9 PM
Friday 9 AM–8 PM
Saturday 11 AM–3 PM
Sunday 11 AM–3 PM