Couples therapy

A good, solid, loving relationship is often one of the most important factors in having a happy life. Relationships can provide us with support, intimacy, comfort, appreciation and strength. However, we all know relationships can be hard work and require some maintenance.  We lead very busy lives and with many demands on our time. It can be easy to be too preoccupied and for a relationship to suffer.

There are many common pitfalls that Relationship's can fall into. These can include communication problems, difficulties in dealing with conflict, adapting to life changes such as having children and a lack of intimacy. Coupes therapy (or couples counselling) will teach you tools and techniques that will help you to navigate these pitfalls and strengthen your relationship.

It is important to me as a couples therapist that we try and work towards making changes. Without change it is difficult to move the relationship forward and any positive impact can just be temporary. I want your sessions to be effective and to be value for money.

What can couples therapy help with:

Common problems

There a number of common problems that couples experience:

Lack of intimacy

This doesn’t just have to be in a sexual context. It can also be physical and emotional intimacy. A lack of intimacy can have a huge impact on the closeness and connection we can feel with our partner. This can become difficult to resolve as couples can feel unloved and rejected. This can then make it harder to keep trying to be intimate as it can feel very risky and demoralising. Coupes therapy aims to help the couple develop trust and communication skills that allow them to overcome the barriers to intimacy.


Conflict is a natural part of relationships. However, couples can often have very different conflict styles and this can lead to differences never getting resolved. For example, one partner may want to resolve a different e immediately, another may want time to process it first. Couples can get caught up in the content of the conflict and find it difficult to understand what underlies these patterns. Conflict can be very destructive for a relationship and if nothing changes can drive the couple further apart. Couples therapy can help to understand what drives the conflict and what keeps it stuck.


A healthy relationship is characterised by good communication. Good communication involves clearly conveying our intended message accurately. This allows couples to understand each other and to solve problems effectively. It also builds trust in the relationship. Problems occur when the messages we are trying to deliver are misunderstood or misinterpreted.  Enhancing communication is usually the starting point for couples therapy.

Needs not being met

Relationships need to be able to balance everyones needs. This includes the needs of each separate  partner and the needs of the relationship also. Its important that both partners have enough of their needs met to feel OK. It is important that time is given to the relationship also. It can be a very difficult balance to find given how busy our live can be. Being honest about and communicating our needs to each other can often be very difficult especially if we are concerned about it causing conflict or distress. It is important that couples therapy finds a way to make sure all needs are being met as best as possible.

Depression and other mental health problems

Depression can have a big impact on a relationship. How the couple deal with the depression can be crucial. If they do not deal with the depression in a helpful way the depression can be maintained and this can push the couple further apart. Learning how to deal with depression and other mental health problems as a couple and as a team can really strengthen a relationship. Couple therapy would aim to help couples understand each partners mental health and how the relationship can support recovery whilst building trust and resilience.


Infidelity is becoming one of the leading causes of divorce and relationship breakdown. Infidelity can have a massive impact on the relationship and on the individuals also. Infidelity usually leads to a lack of trust in a relationship. Infidelity is one of the most difficult issues to resolve in a relationship. Couples therapy would look to try and work through the issues around infidelity and to understand why it happened. It would try and help the couple understand what the path to moving on from infidelity might look like.

Divorce and break up

Many relationships end in divorce or break up. If a relationship is not satisfactory for one or both partners and this continues, eventually one or both partners will make the decision to end the relationship. This can be a difficult and distressing experience for most couples. Divorce and break ups can be a trigger for depression and anxiety disorders. If children are involved, this can also complicate things. Sometimes the role of a couple therapist can be to assist couples to go through this life changing experience.

What to expect from couples therapy

The assessment process lasts 4 sessions. This consists of the first session together as a couple. I will ask some standard questions regarding the history of the relationship and what the couple feel the difficulties are. I will also explore other standard mental health questions that are relevant to therapy.

There will be then an individual session for each partner. This is to explore each partners individual history including family history as well as relationship history.

The 4th session will then be back together as a couple. This session will focus on identifying goals and the focus of the treatment.

All treatment sessions will be together as a couple. During the initial sessions I will help the couple gain an insight into what is keeping their problems stuck and why they might have developed. I will help the couple understand their individual role in the difficulties the relationship is experiencing. Once we understand the difficulties more fully, we can then work on challenging how we perceive each other and the relationship.

At times the sessions will involve identifying emotions and helping individuals understand their emotions and the impact they have on each other and the relationship. This is often challenging for people and needs to be approached in an empathic way.

Further treatment sessions will involve changing unhelpful behaviours. It is important that we work towards change and don’t juts get stuck talking about change. There will be tasks to try out in-between sessions to leaner the skills needed communicate effectively.

Couples will come out of therapy with better understanding of their relational patterns and of what has kept the, stuck. They will also learn the skills needed to effectively communicate and problem solve as a team.

Pre-family therapy

Having children usually has a huge impact on relationships and can change the dynamics drastically. The contact with which the relationship may have been working well can be totally changed. A good proportion of the couples I have seen for therapy, report their difficulties starting following children. Having couples therapy before you have children can really future proof your relationship and help you anticipate and tackle many of the common problems that can arise.

These sessions can help you with the following:

  • Understand what the pitfalls might be in the future
  • Identify any current differences that could potentially be amplified in the future
  • Discuss and identify individual expectations around how things will work, including practical considerations
  • Identify each partners needs and what is important to them and how these might be impacted by children
  • To discuss each partners fears and concerns about having children
  • To identify the best way to deal with distress in the relationship


Difference between couples counselling and couples therapy

There are many different types of support for couples. There is marriage guidance, relationship counselling, marriage counselling, couples counselling and couples therapy. These words are often used interchangeably. There will of course be a lot of overlap between all the types of couple support.

Couples therapy and couples counselling will involve dealing with present day events and working  on the challenges that relationships present. They will both help you to work through problems and address communication issues by allowing space to talk about these problems.

Couples therapy will also involve thinking about each partners history and how this impacts on the relationship. Understanding how each others stories fit together and where they might clash helps us to make sense of some of the difficulties a couple might experience. Couples therapy can help to address the individual issues to understand the behaviour you may be showing in the relationship. Therefore, Couples therapy will help address the root or underlying causes of relationship problems.

Session number and fees

Couples therapy is usually between 8 and 20 sessions. This is dependant on the couple and can vary.
For pre family therapy I would recommend between 2 and 6 sessions. However, again, this can vary.
All couples sessions are £80 per session.

Ready to book your session?

If you have any questions or are ready to book you can contact me below:

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