Break cycles of arguments, put downs, withdrawal and pursuit.

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Anger Management for Couples



Intimate relationships can be a fertile ground for dysfunctional anger. Love relationships often create unrealistic expectations for how our partner or spouse should make us feel, on one hand, and what kinds of behaviors will be tolerated or forgiven, on the other.

Dysfunctional patterns of anger from earlier relationships or one's family of origin may get automatically repeated. External sources of stress, psychological issues, or dysfunctional habits can result in anger that deeply damages an intimate relationship.

Sometimes anger gets so out of control that regular counseling cannot take place and we have to focus exclusively on Couples Anger Management therapy.


The first step in anger management is admitting that it has gotten out of control and is having a negative impact on your life. It also requires a willingness to change your old, destructive way of responding to situations, and a commitment to responding in more positive, life-enhancing ways. You may never be able to completely rid yourself of the things or people that enrage you, but you can learn to control your reactions.




Couple treatment for problematic anger involves:


  • Developing a better understanding of what anger really is and how it developed in your life and in your relationship.


  • Understanding the symptoms of anger in your relationship and breaking down the symptoms into physical signs (fast heartbeat, sweaty palms…), mental signs (confusion, concentration problems…), and behavioral signs (pacing, swearing…).


  • Identify where in your body you are experiencing the anger (burning in the chest, knot in the stomach…).


  • Developing a rating scale that you can use in real time when angry. This helps you keep perspective on what is happening to you.


  • Learn a set of anger management tools (how to walk away, breathing techniques, distraction strategies, identifying primary emotions, exercise…).


  • Keeping an anger diary.


  • Creating and committing to an anger management plan for you as a couple.

Once the anger is brought under control, we can address the emotions that underlie anger, such as fear, betrayal, abandonment and hurt. You will feel tremendous relief and a sense of accomplishment once you gain positive control over your anger. I would love to help you achieve this.



Books: The Anger Control Workbook, The Anger Workbook (Christian approach), and The Dance of Anger


Here are some simple steps to take:

  • Talk to your partner about your desire to improve your relationship and to meet his or her needs,

  • Take the Anger Questionnaire, and 

  • Fill out the form below to set up a Consult Call with me.

I look forward to hearing from you!

Change begins by taking the first step.
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If you are in crisis, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, a free, 24-hour hotline at 1.800.273.8255.  If your issue is an emergency, call 911 or go to your nearest emergency room.  Dr. Motro does not offer crisis counseling or emergency services.

Dr. Harry Motro, Marriage Counselor, is an employee of Harry Motro, Psy.D., Marriage and Family Therapist, P.C., which is a Professional Corporation.  Dr. Motro practices at 3880 South Bascom Drive, Suite 111, San Jose, CA,95124, is Licensed as a Marriage Family Therapist MFC 53452 and authorized to act as a Psychotherapist providing Psychotherapy. He specializes in Couples Counseling.   In addition to dealing with couples and relationship issues, Dr. Motro is trained to treat anxiety, panic attacks, post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, bi-polar, ADHD, Asperger's, sex difficulties, anger regulation issues, affair fallout, divorce recovery, self-esteem, addiction, co-dependency, trauma, abuse, eating disorders, and managing grief and loss. These issues often arise in couples counseling and will be dealt with as part of your therapy. If you search for counseling San Jose, marriage counselor San Jose, couples counselor San Jose, psychotherapy San Jose, psychotherapist San Jose, therapist San Jose, counselor San Jose, couples therapist San Jose, couples counselor San Jose, marriage therapy San Jose, life coach San Jose, career coach San Jose, executive coach San Jose, you can find Dr. Harry Motro's web site. In addition to serving San Jose, Harry serves clients in Campbell, Los Gatos, Saratoga, Willow Glen, Milpitas, Mountain View, Monte Sereno, Cupertino, Scotts Valley, Felton, Sunnyvale, Morgan Hill, Fremont, Los Altos, and Gilroy, California. Dr. Motro also provides  Mountain Bike Therapy. The recommendations on this website do not constitute professional advice, substitute for professional treatment, or establish a therapeutic relationship.

Harry Motro, Psy.D., Marriage and Family Therapist, P.C.,,, 408 823 2822.

Rosario Puga-Dempsey, Associate Marriage and Family Therapist (117320), is supervised by and works for Harry Motro, Psy.D., Marriage and Family Therapist, P.C., (License #53452) which is a Professional Corporation. She can be reached at Her email is and her phone # is 408 768 5300.

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