Karen Thacker, MS, LPC


Why I do intensives


Hello, here's a bit more about me

Located on the edge of the beautiful Rocky Mountains, the Denver area Smalley Institute is led by Karen Thacker. Karen holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology, a Master’s degree in Counseling and is a Licensed Professional Counselor. Her approach to working with couples is both direct and compassionate. Karen understands the reality of being human and married: both can be very difficult as well as rewarding. Sometimes it seems easier to default to old ways which often results in unhealthy behavior and a hurt partner. Karen’s approach to working with couples equips them to identify why they choose to use those default patterns and develop healthier relationship-building skills.

Karen is passionate about the Marriage Intensives. She practices what she preaches in her own marriage and has found first-hand the effectiveness of owning her feelings, seeing her part in the issues she and her husband face, and utilizing the skills taught in an Marriage Intensive.

Karen believes relationship issues are not the responsibility of just one person. She serves as an impartial coach, helping both people involved in the relationship see their part in why the relationship is not enjoyable. Using the Marriage Intensive tools, Karen’s clear, practical and fair approach equips couples to experience peace, joy and deep connection in their relationship.

"This program is wonderful! The processes that my husband and I have learned are life changing! We are going to have a better marriage because of the tools that we have learned. The skills we had were lacking, at best, and we have realized that what we will be applying to our lives will not only effect us, but our children and even their children. I am thrilled to know that we will be able to teach them by being good (better) role models."


"We saw God do amazing things in our two-day intensive. I had all but given up on my marriage. I came out of obligation and had decided I would be done with the mess of a marriage that we had. After 26 years of pain and inability to communicate, after addiction and infidelity. God showed up and healed a shattered relationship and stared us on a new journey. Looking forward to continuing on in therapy. Our coach was such a blessing and made us so comfortable. No words to describe what happened. Thank you!"


"I personally had about given up on our marriage. After years, even decades of different counselors, we were still stuck in unhealthy and destructive cycles. Our coach had the knowledge, style, tools, and care to hear our pain, validate us, and teach us to do that for each other. It was the key for our hearts to soften and opened the door to a healthier and happier future together."


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