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The PACT Institute

Frequently Asked Questions

What does a PACT session look like?

Your experience during a PACT session may differ somewhat from what you would experience in other forms of couple therapy. Key features of this approach include

  • Your PACT therapist will focus on moment-to-moment shifts in your face, body, and voice, and ask you to pay close attention to these as a couple.
  • Your PACT therapist will create experiences similar to those troubling your relationship and help you work through them in real time during the session.
  • PACT tends to require fewer sessions than do other forms of couple therapy.
  • PACT sessions often exceed the 50-min hour and may last as long as 3–6 hours. Longer times allow for the in-depth work of PACT.
  • Your PACT therapist may videotape sessions to provide immediate feedback to you.

What is the fee to see a PACT therapist?

Each PACT therapist sets his or her own rates, consistent with that therapist’s practice.

Is PACT only for couples?

Yes, PACT is specifically for couples, and it is essential for the therapy that both partners attend sessions together. Some PACT therapists may also see individual clients as part of their general practice.

What other training do PACT therapists have?

PACT therapists can be licensed marriage and family therapists, social workers, counselors, psychologists, or psychiatrists. The therapist directory indicates each therapist’s credentials. More information about therapists’ backgrounds is available on their websites.

What issues can a PACT therapist help with?

PACT is designed for the full spectrum of issues you may be facing, including anxiety, depression, infidelity, sexual issues, parenting conflicts, addictions, trauma, abuse, blended family issues, and more. If either partner has a major psychiatric illness (e.g., schizophrenia, bipolar), a severe neurological deficit, suicidal issue, or other more serious concerns, you should select a therapist whose general training includes working with these issues as well.

Does PACT work for same-sex couples?


What is the best way to select a PACT therapist?

Search the directory for a therapist in your local area. If a listing includes the therapist’s website, check it out for more information. If you think a therapist might be right for you, make sure you are clear about fees, scheduling, and any other questions you may have prior to making a first appointment.

How important is it that a PACT therapist be certified?

All PACT therapists have been trained to support you and your partner in dealing with issues that come up in your relationship and to help you build long-lasting, secure-functioning relationships.  A PACT-certified therapist has 3 or more years of training in PACT and therefore will have incorporated PACT more fully into his or her practice than a therapist with less PACT training. Depending on your issues and needs, a therapist’s other credentials may also be an important consideration (for example, if you feel you should see a psychiatrist).

What if there is no PACT therapist in my area?

If you can make the time and can afford it, consider seeing a PACT therapist located elsewhere. Many PACT therapists are open to out-of-town clients because this form of therapy can be done in an intensive, concentrated time frame.

Can PACT therapy be done over the phone?

No. A PACT therapist relies on visual and other nonverbal cues that cannot be picked up over the phone.

To learn more about PACT visit our website. 

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