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12th July 2024 

Couples Counselling

I believe that effective couples counselling is a about:

  • bringing to the surface the key dynamics in the relationship which are preventing the couple relating in the way they want to, and then,
  • working on finding different, more productive ways of relating.

    Sometimes the couple will arrive at the outset with a sense of the problematic dynamics and, in any case, they will normally emerge out of the couple’s own description of how their relationship works - as well as how the couple relate to each other in the sessions themselves.

    My main role is to:

  • Be alert to the dynamics in the relationship which may be causing problems
  • Highlight them to the couple to see if I have spotted something important
  • Help the couple talk through what underlies the dynamic
  • Encourage the couple to experiment with more effective ways of relating.

    To do this the counsellor needs to be seen by the couple as basically impartial - rather than as an ally of one or the other. However, the counsellor also needs to be strong enough to confront each of the couple with the role that they play in maintaining the problem dynamics and invite them to change.

    Sometimes the issues being dealt with are relatively specific and the work can be completed through 4 to 8 sessions. In other cases, particularly if one of both of the couple are themselves struggling with deep-seated issues, the work needs to be longer-term than this.

    Normally I meet couples on a weekly basis, at the same time each week, for a 50 minute session. Where this is not possible for the clients then we work around their schedule.