Relationship & Marriage Counselling in London
Relationship counselling, couples therapy or marriage counselling is an effective method of helping couples to mind their relationship. It is helpful for specific problems, as well as for complex problems that have developed and solidified over a long period of time. However, relationship counselling is also a form of individual therapy where we can explore how we relate to both ourselves and others.
Couples therapy takes place in a neutral setting with an impartial observer who is trained to listen and provide constructive feedback. Couples often feel relieved once they start the process and will usually feel more able to explore challenging issues in a structured framework.
It is not uncommon for marriage counselling to save the relationship, but even if it does not, it is often a learning experience that can help partners separate amicably and understand what they need to do differently in the future.
Relationship counselling that is attended wholeheartedly can be a deeply transformative experience.
Loss of intimacy
The arrival of a new child
Infertility or difficulty conceiving
Significant life changes
The initial consultation for couples counselling takes 90 minutes and is attended by both members of the couple. This is an opportunity for both partners to share their point of view about the relationship difficulties. It is also an opportunity to allow the couple counsellor to observe first hand how the couple relate to each other. This aspect of couples therapy is vital and valuable and helps the couple to see what they cannot normally observe on their own. The immediacy of the feedback offered by the couple therapist is usually appreciated by the couple.
If relationship counselling is thought to be the best way forward, the couple are seen weekly at the same time and day to ensure the consistency and effectiveness of the couple counselling. Sometimes a different framework may be put in place for those that cannot commit to this, due to travelling for example.
Couples counselling is a process that usually takes a minimum of 12-16 sessions following the consultation. However, it cannot be rushed and sustainable change often takes some time to establish.
Benefits of couples therapy
- Better understanding of the other’s point of view
- Improving open and honest communication
- Offering a focused and sustained inquiry into the dynamics between two people
- Having a safe space to explore powerful painful feelings such as fear, anger, sadness, hopelessness and resentment
- Mobilizing feelings of love, concern, and affection
- Reducing polarisation and incompatibility
- Helps redefine each partner’s relationship to autonomy and intimacy, closeness and distance, dependence and independence, self-interest and couple well-being
- Accepting and working through an ending if there is a decision to uncouple