What is relationship counselling and how can it help?
There's no single answer to that question but I can tell you what some of my clients have reported at the end of their counselling. Here are some of the things they said:
- Because they had set aside time, and with someone else listening, they talked about things in a more constructive way.
- It felt safe to raise issues that were concerning them that they hadn't been able to talk about before.
- When things got heated the argument was diffused and they were able to keep talking.
- Clients whose partners hadn't wanted to come said that it helped them understand things better and make changes themselves which caused different reponses from their partner and meant that the relationship or marriage felt better for both of them.
- It enabled them to identify the point at which things started to go wrong and why, and that meant they could get back on an even keel.
- They learned to communicate better.
- Once the tension between them dropped they could begin to recapture the feelings they had for one another at the beginning of the relationship and see why they wanted to stay together.
- They got to know one another better.
What kinds of problems can relationship counselling help?
People seek relationship therapy for a wide range of issues. I'm experienced in working with people of all ages and in all kinds of relationships and I'm familiar with most relationship, marriage and personal problems. Here are some areas where relationship counselling has been found to be beneficial:
- Frequent rows or arguments
- Affairs or betrayals
- Loss of intimacy
- Loss of interest in sex
- Communication difficulties
- Repeating cycles or patterns that are damaging to the relationship
- Not feeling as close as you used to
- Unexpected events that impacted on the relationship
What benefits can you expect?
No two relationships are the same. Relationships counselling enables you to think about how you want your relationship to be and what you want from it. It can help make sense of why things have changed, and to understand each other's perspective. Relationship counselling encourages relationships to grow and develop. It's not a quick fix but it enables people to get to the bottom of things and go forward. At the end of counselling you may find that you see things differently, understand each other better and that you can talk things through in a more productive way. It can also help, if you decide to separate, to do so more smoothly and effectively.