What makes for a well-functioning, ultimately successful relationship? It’s up to every couple to find out what works for them. This “finding out together” is a vital part of being in a relationship. One could even say that it is the relationship.
However, sometimes communication and intimacy get lost, and situations become stuck. Any deadlock can affect both partners and perhaps children or dependents, and often threatens the existence of the relationship.
Conflicts are a natural and healthy occurrence in every relationship and offer great opportunities to learn about each other and to make it stronger. When the relationship does not seem to allow for this learning, then it is worth investing in a space, where this inquiry can start and live.
For this, it is appropriate to consider:
- relationship counselling and psychotherapy for each partner
- counselling and therapy for couples
- a combination of both individual and couples therapy. This solution is particularly effective.
Individual counselling and psychotherapy for relationship problems
In relationship counselling, the primary aim is to understand the patterns of behaviour that affect the functioning of the couple, how they have come about, how this affects the client, and how to correct them.
In my experience, clients who come to see me for relationship counselling or relationship therapy also experience anxiety, depression or stress, and may require help with anger management. It is very common for the two types of work to progress alongside each other.
Couples counselling and therapy for couples
Couples counselling or therapy is a space for the relationship to become clear and conscious. It helps the partners to:
- begin or improve communication
- see things from the other’s perspective
- make informed choices about how to engage with each other.
Couples counselling is particularly effective when the problems that the partners are experiencing are due to a recent and sometimes unexpected change of circumstances in their relationship. For example, this may be due to:
- problems conceiving
- issues with sexuality
- infidelity of one or both partners
- the birth or adoption of a child
- a change in professional circumstances such as a promotion, an expatriation or a redundancy
Couples therapy is effective when partners notice that, over time, the quality of their relationship seems to have diminished, and that the meaning of their being together is no longer evident.
I have experience in both couples counselling and couples therapy, and have helped many individual clients who came to my London practice seeking help for problems related to their couple.