Bringing Baby Home is a 12-hour workshop designed by The Gottman Institute to help maintain and build upon the stability of a couple’s relationship during the transition to parenthood.

Through the workshop, couples will learn skills to help them maintain their relationship satisfaction as they become parents together.

“The greatest gift a couple can give their baby is a loving relationship, because that relationship nourishes Baby’s development.”

– Drs. John and Julie Gottman, Authors of “And Baby Makes Three”

About the Workshop

newborn baby holding finger

Bringing Baby Home was designed and created by relationship experts, Drs. John and Julie Gottman, at The Relationship Research Institute in Seattle. The Gottmans’ research demonstrates that when couples become parents, there is a significant decrease in their relationship satisfaction. Further research has shown that relationship discord and conflict have a profound negative effect on the couples’ infants and toddlers.

Julia Ward, a Resident in Counseling at Sunstone Counseling, is a Bringing Baby Home Educator and runs the workshop several times annually to help couples as they transition into parenthood.

Who does it serve?

The program is for pregnant couples and families with children up to three years of age. Babies in arms are welcome (less than 1 year of age).

What are the goals?

The goal of this program is to improve the quality of life for babies and children by strengthening the parental relationship. Objectives include:

  • Increasing friendship in the relationship
  • Dealing effectively with conflict
  • Keeping dads involved in infant care and parenting
  • Improving the quality of parent–infant interaction
  • Recognizing the psychological and emotional needs of their child
  • Co-parenting effectively


Bringing Baby Home Workshops are offered four times annually and are currently held IN-PERSON in the Ashburn office (map it).

Workshop Dates:
January 21-22, 2023
April 22-23, 2023
June 3-4, 2023
October 21-22, 2023

The schedule for each workshop on Saturday and Sunday is as follows: 9:30am-12:30pm and 2-5:00pm (with a break for lunch from 12:30-2:00pm).

Don’t see a date that works for you? Contact to see if there are other upcoming options.


$395 per couple, including materials

Workshop Materials

Each couple will receive a package including:

  • Bringing Baby Home Couple’s Workbook
  • Love Maps Card Deck
  • Love Maps for Couples with Kids Card Deck
  • Open-Ended Questions Card Deck
  • Father Cards Card Deck
  • Softened Start-Up Card Deck
  • Expressing Needs Card Deck

  • How to Address Challenges New Parents May Face
    It’s no secret that the transition to parenthood is a challenging one with all the physical, psychological, and relational changes that occur in a relatively short period of time. With sleep deprivation, it’s no wonder that many parents experience a shortness in temper or/and a lack of patience. If you’re a parent, you’re familiar with these challenges. If you’re expecting for the first time, you may be wondering how to navigate this unknown, upcoming transition, how a new baby will impact your lifestyle and relationship, and what kind of parent you will be.  

About the Educator

Julia Ward earned a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Marketing at Cedar Crest College and completed a master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at Marymount University. Her training at Marymount shaped her into an effective counselor, using approaches that utilize a combination of techniques from Person-Centered Therapy, Solution-Focused Brief Therapy (SFBT), and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). She has worked with clients who are anxious, depressed, experiencing life changes, processing past trauma, stressed, and who are processing current or past losses and grief. She works collaboratively with clients who are motivated, engaged in the counseling experience, and who want to explore themselves to find greater life satisfaction and happiness.

Counselor Julia Ward