Couples/Marital Issues

Years in Practice

3-5 years


Roseville MN 55113 - United States



Additional Expertise

Author, Consultant, Marriage Educator, Speaker/Presenter

I Practice in

All areas, please inquire



I Believe

I am going to have my office ready for clients late August/Early September 2013.

Clients can find me near Saint Paul, just off high way 36, easy to get to from Minneapolis, Saint Paul and surrounding areas.  Stay tuned!

About Elizabeth Doherty Thomas, MS

Dating is like being on a tropical island. Everyone leaves you alone. You get to spend insane amounts of time together. You are truly in a bubble.

Then you get engaged, which we call The Hour of Bliss. The moment you say "yes", you have created in-laws and have begun the extremely complicated process of joining two families.

Your tropical island life is over whether you're ready or not!

Having grown up as the daughter of a famous family therapist father, I found myself in a strange new world when I became engaged. After deciding to use myself as an experiment on how to avoid the wedding industry and instead have an “intentional” engagement, I quickly realized that wedding planning offered tremendous opportunities to learn about relationships, marriage, and family life.

I experienced drama myself and read thousands of internet posts from brides who were overwhelmed by the interpersonal stresses of weddings–such as divorced parents, difficult mothers in law, who to invite, and unsupportive friends—and invited my marriage and family therapist father to help uncover the family systems principles behind these stories. Out of these father-daughter conversations came a book and website to help engaged couples where they are—planning a wedding with their loved ones.

Find me on Twitter at @TheFirstDance and check out the large website, The First Dance that offers many ways to get marriage preparation (counselors or DIY) AND sound wedding advice.

Find more marriage advice here.

Elizabeth Doherty Thomas, MS Success Stories

Anyone Involved In A Wedding Can Benefit

Engaged couples

"Anyone involved in planning a wedding can benefit from this book. It addresses true-to-life issues that everyone deals with in one way or another during the planning process. It's about time someone talked about those issues, and gave practical solutions for dealing with them. I know I will refer to this book often when working with my brides and grooms!"more

Kristen Samz, Consultant

A Current Affair Weddings and Events
Denver, Colorado

It's MY Day...or Is it?

Engaged couples

"The emotional limits was good. I've played the 'it's your day' part. Is that the way it should be? Am I doing the wrong thing? It was an eye opener for me."

Thou Shalt Not Mock (Thy In-Laws!)

Engaged couples

"The family principles were very useful. I have a distorted view of family and watch her family to see what is a NORMAL family. I don't know anything about weddings. Something in this [book] has sparked my interesting - like the idea of mocking the other persons family."

Principles for Engaged Couples

Engaged couples

"I'm relating most to the couple principles because we don't have a date set yet and haven't involved the families. We're going to figure out the values - how we can come up with a product that reflects us."

Mind The (In-Law) Gap!

Engaged couples

"The thing that crosses my mind is the fragility of the in-law relationship. How [my fiance] knows his family for 30 years and I’m new. It's a good reminder - there is a gap in how well we know each other."

Groom Looks Freshly at his Mother In Law

Engaged couples

"Basically I have to sit back and look at what I'm doing. I may be making it more difficult in how others are perceiving me. I need to have an open mind about things. [My fiancees] mom likes to make decisions. I sometimes wonder if it's how I come across? Is it something I'm doing? She could be getting frustrated and I need to figure out how to make it easier for me and what I could do."more




We learned during the rehearsal the paster asked a question and the groom realized his mother in law may have an opinion, so he asked her for her thoughts.  They both laughed as she said, "I don't care!"  It was the first great communication moment they shared together.

Elizabeth Doherty Thomas, MS Articles