Showtime’s ‘Couples Therapy‘ is an addictive reality TV series that features couples who approach eminent psychologist Dr. Orna Guralnik for guidance. The show features documentary-style episodes that track the progress of the couples as they open up about their problems and work on the methods suggested by her to improve their strained relationships.
Since the show debuted in September 2019, it has seen numerous couples over three seasons who have worked hard to mend their bond. One of them is Sam, formerly known as Sarah, and Lauren, a queer and trans couple who wished to save their 2-year marriage as they entered the show. Fans were highly invested in the couple’s journey and are now curious to know how they are doing presently. Let’s find out more.
Sam and Lauren’s Couples Therapy Journey
Sam Hopwood and Lauren Guilbeaux first met when they were 23 and 29 respectively. The latter had just begun their transition and was recently divorced from their first partner. After they had been dating for six months, Lauren underwent her transfeminine top and bottom surgery and Sam accompanied her. The couple approached Dr. Guralnik after a few conflicts started arising in their marriage of two years, mainly regarding the decision to start a family. While Sam wished to have a baby, Lauren was still adjusting to her transition.
Not just that, the couple wished to find a middle ground amidst their differing sex drives. Sam shared with Dr. Guralnik that during the initial period of their marriage, they would get physically intimate once a month or so. But then, this started causing frustration and affected their relationship negatively. Thus, Sam and Lauren decided to open their relationship, which freely allowed them to explore their needs with other partners. Though this approach helped release the pressure, it also created new issues, such as Sam wanting Lauren to initiate intimacy more.
In addition, Sam felt insecure that Lauren might be further interested in dating men, given their open marriage. However, Lauren explained that her transfeminine bottom surgery had a few after-effects that made sex a painful experience. She further expressed that she felt ashamed about her physical limitations during sex. Eventually, Dr. Guralnik helped the pair navigate the troubling power dynamics in their marriage by guiding Lauren on managing her defensive tendencies and Sam on how to listen to their partner better.
As the couple began getting a better understanding of their marriage and themselves, they learned how to balance their individual needs while keeping in mind how to make each other feel heard and appreciated. Toward the end of their sessions with Dr. Guralnik, Sam and Lauren were gradually able to reach a consensus about their future together and decided to continue working on their marriage.
Are Sam and Lauren Still Together?
Unfortunately, Sam and Lauren are not together anymore. After ‘Couples Therapy’ season 1 concluded, they appeared in ‘The COVID Special’ episode in December 2020, wherein Sam revealed that they were feeling distressed as their wedding photography business had to be shut down due to COVID-19. Furthermore, they came out as a non-binary person and now goes by the name Sam (formerly Sarah). Also, the couple decided to drop the idea of having a child, but it still caused friction occasionally.
In June 2021, Lauren and Sam announced that they filed their divorce papers and have decided to go their separate ways to figure out their individual journeys. Having said that, each of them stated that they would continue to support the other throughout and had nothing but respect for each other. In a bittersweet caption, Lauren wrote, “Now I find myself at a place where I’m so grateful for the adventure, immense growth and fun we both experienced together. This was a hell of a ride and I’m so content with how it’s wrapping up and excited for what’s to come for us both. To past adventures and new beginnings.”
Sam elaborated that they are highly grateful for the seven years of togetherness with Lauren and though “grief still lingers in the back corner,” both of them look forward to this new phase of their lives. Since then, Sam has been busy with their art and photography ventures, while Lauren has moved to Los Angeles and is working on her acting projects. They keep updating fans with tidbits about their lives and are presently focused on healing and fulfilling their goals in life.