He Said She Said Counseling – How It Began

He Said She Said Counseling Center was created by two therapists, Tarah and EJ Kerwin, who have over 25 years of combined experience in the counseling field.  Tarah and EJ, a married couple and blended family with four children felt passionate about creating a counseling center that exclusively focused on emotional wellness of couples and families following the birth of their twins in 2014.   In the first year of their twin’s life they found communication breaking down, disconnected as a couple and felt stretched to the limit as professionals, parents and partners.  Many issues including sleep deprivation, stress and parenting factored into the challenges in their relationship.

On yet another sleep deprived morning, as Tarah was pushing those crying bundles of joy in the double stroller through Reid Park, tears streaming down her cheeks, she had her A-HA moment.  Tarah called EJ immediately and said “Honey, I know what we are supposed to do… He Said She Said, wouldn’t it be wonderful to support couples and families to stay connected and better meet each other’s needs, so that life will feel more manageable during stressful times?”  That was the beginning thought in what is now the creation of He Said She Said Counseling Center and after 2 years of planning and research, EJ and Tarah opened the doors to serve the Tucson community in 2016.

He Said She Said Counseling Center offers individual, couples and family counseling.  The unique approach to couples counseling is that sessions are co-facilitated by Tarah & EJ who have found facilitating sessions in this manner creates balance, warmth, compassion and understanding of each couple’s unique situation and needs.  In addition, the combined insight of two clinicians with unique perspectives and backgrounds creates a diverse environment for the couple to grow and make the needed shifts toward a healthier relationship.  Tarah and EJ created two specific programs at He Said She Said Counseling Center.  Their 12-week program, Relationship Renovation – is designed for couples who need help in navigating stressors in the partnership that are resulting in disconnection, anger, resentment and mistrust.  Their 8-week program, When Sparks Fly – is geared toward engaged and/or newly committed couples taking a pro-active approach to relationship wellness to avoid disconnection and deterioration of their relationship.  These programs help couples explore what EJ and Tarah have found are the fundamentals of a happy and healthy relationship.

  • Honesty and Trust
  • Emotional Safety
  • Strong Communication Skills
  • Healthy Conflict Resolution
  • Forgiveness and Flexibility
  • Consistent Emotional and Physical Intimacy
  • Healthy Attachment and Boundaries
  • Collaborative Goal Setting
  • Mindfulness and Awareness of Dysfunctional Patterns
  • Resiliency

The goal in this blog is to discuss the issues that individuals, families and couples face.  When primary relationships feel good and needs are being met then the inevitable ups and downs of life feel more manageable.  When primary relationships are unstable, life becomes more stressful, hopeless and unmanageable.  Tarah and EJ are passionate about making this world a better place through helping individuals, couples and families create and maintain loving connections and emotional wellness.

Stable Relationship, Stable Life

Long-term committed relationships are the very base level of connectivity within our culture. They are the building blocks of families, which make up our schools, community organizations, businesses and every other facet of our society. With a divorce rate of over 47%, it is easy to see that in order to begin to build a happier, healthier and more stable society we must focus on the wellness of intimate, committed relationships. Without a solid foundation, the most structurally sound building cannot withstand the ebbs and flows of life as time passes. However, couples rarely take time to work on their relationship unless they reach a point of crisis.

Everything in life becomes much more manageable when individuals feel safe and supported in their relationships. Work and parenting are natural stress inducers; both are easier to navigate when individuals feel safe and secure in their relationship. They have confidence in the fact that they will be loved and accepted no matter what happens. This security allows individuals to feel a sense of freedom in their decision-making. The comfort of knowing that another individual accepts and loves them unconditionally allows individuals to remain confident and creative.

Belongingness and Love are the gateways in Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs between the basic needs of shelter and food, the building of self-esteem, and the progression of meeting one’s full potential. A stable and loving relationship gives individuals the confidence that even if there is a threat to their base needs (security/safety,), they will be supported and loved. By building this resilience and durability, they have the potential to build the self-assurance to work towards being their best self.

With this in mind, we can benefit from taking steps early in a relationship to create healthy communication, intimacy, and emotional connectivity. By doing so we can create more stability in families, communities and throughout our society.