Working with couples
- Communication problems
- Managing conflict
- Impact of parenting and family of origin
- Feeling distant or estranged
- Cheating and affairs
- Sex and intimacy
- Impact of sex/Internet 'addiction'
- Power struggles and inequality
- Growing older
- Gender, sex and relationship diversity
Most couples hit difficulties at some stage in their relationships. Whether having trouble speaking out what you really think and feel or being able to listen to what your partner has to say in return, couples counselling can help to shift what can seem like stuckness in the direction of a more positive outcome.
Typically, I begin couple counselling by asking each partner to describe how they are experiencing the current scenario, then sound out what each partner has in mind as a preferred scenario and then invite both partners to work through the obstacles and/or levers which will allow them to move from one scenario to another.
An important part of sounding out any differences between you, is to explore the legacy of your previous experiences of relationship, both in your family of origin/ caregivers and with previous partners. Of course, if it becomes apparent that there is no shared, preferred scenario, then the work would address your reactions to this and how best you can move forward from that point. Throughout the work, you will be encouraged and supported in communicating assertively, particularly around areas of conflict.
It is not my usual practice to work with a couple if I have already formed a therapeutic relationship with one of the individuals in a couple. I work with couples from the start, together.