The Scoop: A toxic relationship can leave singles with a lot of lingering questions. What went wrong? Am I the problem? What do I do now? Licensed therapist Sue DeSanto asked herself those very questions when she left her marriage of 13 years. She spent six months working with a relationship coach to find the answers she needed to move forward. And it worked. She found her confidence and her man, and now she seeks to support other singles in the dating scene. As a relationship coach for singles, Sue makes sure her clients are emotionally prepared to choose the right partners and create stable and loving relationships. By focusing on healing past heartaches, Sue directs her clients toward a more positive and fulfilling future.

After her parents divorced, Sue DeSanto and her five older siblings lived with their father in a three-bedroom ranch-style house in Ohio. It was busy, loud, and crowded, but it was home.

Then, when Sue was 13 years old, her world changed forever. One day, she came home from school to find her busy and loud home was unusually quiet. Her father took her down to the basement to talk with her in private. It was about her mother. She had died. Sue had known that her 46-year-old mother was an alcoholic, but she hadn’t known that she’d been in the hospital for almost a week. The fact that no one had bothered to tell her until it was far too late made Sue feel small and unimportant.

Photo of Sue Desanto, relationship coach

Sue Desanto is a celebrated relationship coach and therapist in Chicago.

“I was shocked. I just thought, ‘I don’t matter. Nothing matters, and I don’t have an impact on what goes on in my life.'” Sue recalled. “That decision I made as a child carried out into my relationships as an adult.”

Years later, Sue chose a husband who reinforced her belief that she wasn’t important, that her needs didn’t matter, and that her thoughts didn’t carry weight in the real world. Her husband told her it was her job, not his, to take care of their children. And she believed him. Her husband told her she needed to change herself to earn his love, and she believed him.

Unsurprisingly, her first marriage ended in divorce. Sue said she couldn’t spend her life hiding who she really was. So she got out. Single again in her 30s, Sue was determined not to repeat her mistakes. She found friends at swing dancing events, and, when a nice guy plucked up the courage to ask her out, she went against her negative instincts and said yes.

Sue is the first to admit it wasn’t love at first sight. It wasn’t until their first date that she fell for the dorky guy whose clothes didn’t fit. The way he looked at her, spoke to her, and treated her made her feel important. She mattered to him, and that changed everything. They’ve now been married for nine years, and Sue has launched a career as a compassionate therapist and relationship coach.

“I opened my heart and found my inherent value,” Sue said. “I met a man who valued, honored, and appreciated me for who I am, and that’s why I love working with clients who are going through those same issues and worrying that they don’t matter.”

Dealing With Current Dating Issues by Resolving Past Pains

Based in Chicago, Sue is a licensed therapist who specializes in relationship coaching for singles. What that means is she equips singles to cultivate and maintain healthy relationships for the rest of their lives. She counters their false beliefs and digs into their dating histories and childhood experiences to find the root of their choices.

Sue offers a three-month coaching course to singles struggling to understand what’s going wrong in their love lives and what they can do about it.

“My program will help you uncover what decisions you made early in life and how that decision is impacting you now,” Sue said. “I dive deep into understanding who you are, what your vision for the future is, where you are now, and what is blocking you from getting what you want.”

Screenshot of Sue Desanto's website

Sue gets to the heart of dating and relationship issues by asking about the client’s dating history.

Sue brings both personal and professional insights into the self-sabotaging behaviors that can set daters on the wrong path. She understands those mistakes all too well, but she also knows how to correct them and empower clients to start again.

Sue’s coaching sessions help singles gain clarity on what they need from their partners and what they should look for in the dating scene. Her encouraging and knowledgeable advice leads her clients to build the life they want and deserve.

“We’re building the foundation of understanding,” she said. “You have to understand your personal story and how it’s holding you back from having the life you want.”

Personalized Coaching Sessions Give Clients Clarity

Sue has worked with many singles throughout the years and seen them transform from shy or brokenhearted singles to confident and capable relationship builders. Sometimes their success stories don’t involve walking into the sunset, however. Sometimes Sue sees it as a victory when her clients realize they’re in the wrong relationship and need to start again.

She told us the story of one man who thought he was in a good relationship. It was smooth sailing for the first three months, and then he crashed and broke several bones. He had to depend on his partner during his recovery, and he found that she wasn’t there for him. The accident and its aftermath was too heavy a burden for their relationship to bear, so they broke up.

“I highly recommend Sue DeSanto as a compassionate and supportive relationship coach.” — J.T., a former client

In Sue’s office one day, the single man bemoaned his bad luck and said if only he hadn’t crashed, he’d still be in a relationship. Sue shook her head and told him he was lucky he broke his ribs early on. Another crisis was bound to happen sooner or later, and what then? If the relationship couldn’t survive a few broken bones, it would’ve crumbled under any adversity, which meant it was doomed to fail no matter what.

“It’s easy to be in a relationship when it’s easy,” she said, “but, when the rubber hits the road, that’s when you discover what the substance is. That’s when you know if you have the ingredients to make the relationship work or not.”

“Sue is amazing to work with! She is thorough and asks thought-provoking questions.” — J.F., a former client

Sue has a healing message for singles of all ages, and she intends to share it with as many people as possible. In the coming months, she plans to launch a group coaching program that speaks specifically to women in the modern dating scene.

Sue believes group coaching can have a wonderfully positive impact on people’s emotional well-being. Her group will focus on starting a discussion among women struggling to find Mr. Right. Sue will offer singles a supportive online community where they can talk about their fears, hopes, worries, and experiences.

“The group will be around the power of story,” Sue said. “It’ll give women a chance to share their story, so they can see that they’re not alone. Because everyone has a story.”

Sue is an Empathetic Relationship Coach for Singles

Sue’s childhood experiences and how she understood them created negative personal beliefs about herself and what she felt she deserved from her relationships. This set her on a difficult path in life, but she recovered by making a conscious effort to change her bad dating patterns and build self-worth. Now she is with a man who gives her the love and appreciation she deserves. Together, they work hard to strengthen their relationship and let each other know each and every day that they matter.

As a relationship coach for singles, Sue strives to send a positive message that carries her clients out of their painful experiences and into a healthier frame of mind. She supports singles in the dating scene and helps them work through issues that are holding them back. By drawing from her personal experiences and professional knowledge, Sue empowers the men and women in her practice to go after the relationship of their dreams.

It may not be easy to achieve, but Sue assures her clients that a truly satisfying relationship is well worth the effort.

“I want to help my clients build intimacy, even in difficult times,” she said, “and cultivate a rich, rewarding, and intimate relationship that can support them through life’s ups and downs.”