If you’re trying to get it right in love, you’re getting it wrong.

RELATIONSHIP TIP #10 Remember how your need for love is wired into your DNA? Well, in order to love and be loved, you must be seen. Not the Instagram-ready polished persona version of you, but the gloriously flawed #wokeuplikethis you. Relationship Tip #10: If you’re trying to get it right in love, you’re getting it […]

Your Proficiencies are the Enemy of Intimacy

Here’s the thing about relationships (I mean the long-term committed kind, not the two-hour flirtations): they’re friggin’ HARD. Committed intimate relationships are guaranteed to make us feel vulnerable in ways that nothing else ever will. And to make matters even more complicated? All the skills that might make you a superstar in your everyday life […]

Your Need for Love is not a Weakness

RELATIONSHIP TIP #8 I promised you 10 truths and we’re down to the final three… #8. Your need for love is not a weakness. The need to be bonded with others is woven into the fabric of your being. It’s a feature, not a bug. Think about it. Millions of years of evolution has wired […]

Love Matters

Feel more connected in your relationship. Couples psychotherapist Fiachra “Figs” O’Sullivan explains some basics about love & connection.

Waiting For Ramen

Figs and Teale are 10 days past their due date, anxiously awaiting the home birth of their second child, Kian. Together they share their vulnerabilities and experiences during this time while also waiting for their favorite San Francisco Friday night treat- Ramen! As couples therapists, they recognize that during times of stress or conflict, people […]

Sex Life in Long Term Relationship

In this video, Figs shares with colleague Ben Murphy about sex in long term relationship.

Ben and Jen in Love

Figs returns with his third installment of the “Who Are You in Love Series”. This time, he is joined by couple “Ben and Jen” and their 4 week old baby in arms. Together they vulnerably open up to the deep and important questions about love. “Is there a moment that stands out for you when […]

Ben Reebs in Love

“Shame really biologically is this momentary message that you have to stop paying attention to what you’re paying attention to.” – Fiachra ‘Figs’ O’Sullivan Portland based naturopathic doctor, Ben Reebs, joins Figs as the second guest in the “Who Are you in Love” series. As a fellow healer, Ben helps his patients restore their bodies, […]

How the Empathi Process Woke Me Up as a Single Woman

In this video, Figs talks with Therapist Romona Mukherjee. When I first started out as a therapist, I had a pretty staunch resistance to working with couples. In my view at the time, couples therapists were the ultra enlightened ones because who else would be so insane as to willingly march into the tense storm […]

Figs on The Couch // That Relationship Show

From Ireland via San Francisco, Deb & Nao of That Relationship Show welcome Marriage & Family therapist Fiachra Figs O’Sullivan. With his unique brand of warmth, humor and Irish charm, Figs shares his passion for helping others heal from emotional pain. He his therapist wife Teale run the company, aimed at democratizing mental health […]

Birth Prep Part 1 with Figs & Teale

In this video, Figs sits down with his pregnant wife, Teale (due in 3-5 weeks!) and together they share a special, intimate chat to prepare for the birth of their second child, Kian! Figs asks Teale three questions. These can be applied to any major relationship debate, thought, fear, or issue: What are your longings […]

Figs & Teale PreBirth Part 2

This video highlights the important and final pre-birth check in with Figs and his pregnant wife Teale. As a follow up to their first pre-birth episode (released 5/23/2017), the two sit down together one last time to share and understand each other’s most vulnerable, lovable parts related to this important event. This time, Figs is […]

Figs and Teale’s first video together

In this video, Figs and Teale share an example from their own relationship of how they got into a fight, how they de-escalated and repaired. They are married and both are couples counselors.

Interview with John Harrison for the True Calling Project

Fiachra O’Sullivan is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist with a practice in in San Francisco. Couples counseling is tough – a lot of therapists shy away from it – but Fiachra loves it. “Love matters, and because it matters so much you’re going to feel threatened in moments where it looks like that love […]

Stop Having The Same Fight Over and Over Again

In this video, Figs appears on the Podcast Conversations with Carla, and shares some key advice on ending conflict in relationships.

Emotional Bonding Styles

“In short, love is an emotional bond. It’s not optional; it’s part of our biology,” affirms Figs in this video about Attachment Styles. Have you ever thought about how we’re “useless” when we’re born? We can’t do anything for ourselves. Our ability to be emotionally bonded is an essential evolutionary solution to our need for […]

Appreciation Exercise while Sheltering in Place

Is being cooped up with your significant other during the covid-19 pandemic getting to you yet? My wife, Teale and I are couples therapists and it took us a good four or five days to sort out the negative cycles we were getting into with each other, given our new reality. Both of us working […]

Built For Love

In this video, Figs goes back to the basics and answers the question what is love? Certified in Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy (a clinical approach founded by Dr. Sue Johnson), Figs shares the Attachment Theory perspective on this big question. Love is an emotional bond that we all need. Simply put, we are biologically wired […]

Be The One You’ve Been Waiting For

In this video, relationship expert and couples therapist Figs O’Sullivan gives husbands and wives a resource to feel more connected in their marriage. No matter how strong we are, when it comes to love there is a part of all of us that can feel rejected or ashamed. Figs teaches you how you can be […]

How do I get my partner to couples counseling?

Clients often ask Figs this important question when initially reaching out for relationship help. His advice, as detailed in this video: “Be persistent, but skillful.”

The Magic is in the Repair

In this video, Figs welcomes a very special guest, Teale Taxis, aka the better half in Figs´ marriage. Teale is also a San Francisco-based Couples Therapist and the mother of their 3 year old daughter. She is due with their 2nd child (a boy) this summer. Together they share their own struggles and moments of […]

It doesn’t matter who started it!

RELATIONSHIP TIP #7 Ready for another relationship truth you need to learn? Relationship Tip #7. It doesn’t matter who started it!  There are no winners once the “You Started It!” battle begins.  As a matter of fact, the tattered remnants of all the couples who do not succeed can be found on the battlefield of “You […]

Your longing for perfection is the enemy

RELATIONSHIP TIP #6 It’s time for some brutal truth telling! Relationship Tip #6. Your longing for perfection is the enemy of your good-enough relationship.  You ready to be honest with yourself? Do you ever doubt that your partner is the right one for you? We’ll keep this just between you and me. 😉  Are they really hot […]

Stop avoiding conflict!

RELATIONSHIP TIP #5 Here’s another relationship truth for you. This one’s a doozy. Relationship Tip #5. Stop avoiding conflict! You’re not doing your relationship any favors by avoiding conflict. The parts of you both that need love the most can use a dose of magic.  And the magic happens after conflict in the repair. Conflict is […]

Stop blaming your partner for all your flippin’ pain.

Relationship Tip #4 Do you ever get your feelings hurt and then frantically try to blame someone or something for your pain? It’d be a miracle if you didn’t … because WE ALL DO IT! Relationship Tip #4: Stop blaming your partner for all of your flippin’ pain. Here’s the thing. Your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors […]

Stop bitchin’ and start connecting!

Relationship Tip #3 Sometimes your partner can be a real jerk, but here’s another relationship truth for ya.  You’re not wrong. I believe you. They CAN be a jerk. But guess what, so can you. And if you’re reading this thinking, “No way, I’m the good one and they’re the bad one and here’s why…” I refer […]

The way you talk about the problem is the problem.

Relationship Tip #2 You wanna improve your relationship today?  Stop asking your partner to change.  What????? Have I lost my flippin’ Couples Therapist mind? I don’t know, you tell me… How well does it work when they tell YOU to be different  — especially in the middle of a fight?  Do you welcome that with […]

Stop trying to shake off your uncomfortable feelings.

Relationship Tip #1 Here’s the first of my 10 relationship truths to help you love better. #1. Stop trying to shake off your uncomfortable feelings. When you’re feeling sad … or lonely … or rejected … or powerless, stop employing whatever your strategy has always been to squash it and instead give some attention to the feeling that’s making […]

What’s a Fight?

Moments of conflict don’t mean that there something wrong with you or your relationship. In fact, they show you how much you both need each other in order to feel at ease in the world. That’s probably a new concept you’re just beginning to think about, so now is a great time for me to […]

Considering Couples Counseling? 5 Things to Look for in a Therapist

5 Things to Look for in a Couples Therapist The majority of us fall into love with nothing more than the instincts of a newborn infant: I need you! Love me this way! And then we pledge to love and honor each other unconditionally until one of us dies. What could possibly go wrong? I […]

I Don’t Treat “Patients”

I Don’t Treat “Patients” It true that I´ve been practicing psychotherapy for years, but I have never, ever seen a patient. It just not how I view the people who come to me for help. They aren´t sick with a disease that I can cure; I´m not the holder of all wisdom who can diagnose, […]

Stop Asking for Your Needs to Be Met

Stop Asking for Your Needs to Be Met One bit of advice that has emerged from the last 50 years of the personal development movement is to ask for our needs to be met. As a therapist, it drives me crazy. Of course, it not the asking that’s bad. It’s the how of it that […]

Sometimes You’re an Asshole

When our partner behaves like an ass, we think they should own their wrongdoing and deliver an apology forthwith — preferably carved in stone and mounted on a plaque for all to see. That seems fair. I mean, we just want responsibility taken, apologies given, and our needs met, am I right? What’s their problem?! […]

Love Matters!

Love Matters! I made this video to give prospective clients, and anyone curious about attachment focused couples therapy, a chance to get a taste of how I, and others like me, help people feel more connected in their relationship. I only have so many hours in the week that I can actually sit with couples […]

Is Monogamy the ONLY Way to be Truly Happy?

Monogamy isn’t the only way to live, but for many of us it’s the best path to the comfort, sense of belonging, andgood health and longevity we deeply desire. A polyamorous relationship can provide those things, but it also dramatically ups the ante for those scary feelings we all experience when wounded in love. By […]

Stop Having The Same Fight Over and Over Again

Stop Having the Same Fight Over and Over Again In the spirit of not waiting to be perfect to get in front of a camera I did my first online video interview last week on the Blab platform about how I work with people in couples counseling. The interviewer is my friend and life coach […]

We fight because our connection matters

Yes, it’s not about the nail. It’s about the system we create together when I feel abandoned or rejected and protest or withdraw when I perceive you (rightly or wrongly) as not being there for me in the ways that makes me feel securely connected/emotionally bonded to you. This in turn brings you to your […]


Figs is a Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist, #79062, a Relationship Coach and the Founder of


1131 Irving St., San Francisco CA 94122. Show Map

917 Irving St., San Francisco, CA 94122. Show Map