• Couples Counselling

When Your Heart Is On The Line

Relationships and connections with others are essential.  Relationships make life have meaning, and there isn’t life without relationships.

Close intimate partner relationships provide us with some of life’s greatest happiness and satisfaction.  However, if you’re experiencing difficulty in your relationship, it can be a painful and confusing time.

The reality is that all couples struggle at one time or another. When the romantic phase ends, disillusionment follows. Difficulties in marriage and long-term relationships are common. Naturally, you will experience these challenges.  

Support to Deepen Intimacy & Connection

Knowledge

Making the unconscious wounds, needs and desires of the relationship conscious. In this way, emotional hurt leftover from childhood no longer repeats in your relationship via unhealthy communication and acting out.

Separate Yet Whole

Recognise and respect each other’s individuality while simultaneously deepening the union. As you move through the developmental stages of the relationship and grow, both individually and as a couple, in the process, you’ll develop a stronger, more mature emotional connection.

Mastery

Master communication skills, including noticing and expressing your thoughts, feelings, wishes, and desires without blame or criticism. Integrate acceptance, allowing, appreciation, affection and attention to help your marriage flourish and deepen into a real fulfilment.

Enough Is Enough

Couples come to counselling looking for change, growth and development.  When your relationship is on the brink, couple counselling can:

  • Help you in making a decision.  The most common one is, ‘Should we stay together or separate?’
  • Provide you with the tools to deepen your relationship if you decide to recommit.
  • Give you space to make decisions that impact the future of the relationship. Maybe one of you wants to have a child, and the other one doesn’t, or there’s some move or job promotion situation that’s creating difficulty about whether you’re going to stay where they are or move. And of course, there’s the one, ‘Shall we get married or shouldn’t we get married?’
  • Support you to end the relationship, to be able, to say goodbye to one another, to go through a divorce or separation, to get help with the children and the parenting and in the process of separation to resolve any resentment, so it doesn’t fester and impair your future relationship or parenting. 

You Might Want To Consider Couples Counselling When:

  • Drifting apart and feeling disconnected
  • Experiencing betrayal, an affair or issues relating to jealousy
  • Continually arguing or fighting
  • Experiencing difficulties with sexual intimacy and emotional closeness
  • Struggling to communicate effectively about crucial issues
  • Having disagreements over parenting and how to raise your children
  • Dealing with infertility or loss

A young diverse couple plays in the snow outside - Couple Counselling - Sandra Harewood Counselling

What Can You Expect?

That said, a few clients unfamiliar with couples therapy have concerns.

Some people express concern that couples therapy might disturb things and make what feels like a bad situation worse. After all, talking about problems can feel uneasy, to say the least, especially when your relationship’s stuck in stalemate or when something hurtful has occurred between you, like an affair or breach of trust.

Others are concerned that the therapist will take sides and reinforce an imbalance or power dynamic in the relationship.

My approach sees your relationship as the ‘client’. It’s the mysterious ever, present Third Body that needs cherishing, just as you would any other living being to keep it healthy.

Couple therapy gives you a space to courageously lean into your difficulties, opening the possibility for a relationship with depth, meaning and a more profound sense of union and connection.

You can expect conversations that model constructive communication, compassion, boundaries, healthy challenge, and empathy. In doing so, you cultivate the skills you need to succeed when the sessions end.

Have You Hit A Wall?

There are common reasons when couples consider splitting up and wonder if it’s too late to salvage the relationship. External and internal stressors can put a considerable strain on a relationship. I have experience working with:

  • Couples on the edge of separation or divorce
  • Affairs
  • Addiction and mental illness
  • Faith
  • Midlife
  • Difference & diversity
  • Grief – e.g. death of a child, parental death 
  • Infertility
  • Money
  • Starting a new business
  • Transitioning to parenthood and parenting
  • Illness and caretaking
  • Trauma and relationships
  • Intimacy and desire
Couple Holding Hands Across Table With Cups Of Coffee - Sandra Harewood

Couple Counselling Can Help You

  • Understand the issues underlying your current difficulties and disagreements
  • Develop strong empathy and listening skills
  • Gain awareness of the relationship patterns you have developed
  • Improve communication skills so that you can understand each other
  • Recognise and appreciate each other’s differences
  • Learn how to express your needs
  • Learn how to open up to new levels of sexual and emotional intimacy with each other
  • Increase your capacity to tolerate and manage difficult conversations.
  • Make decisions.

My Approach

Couple therapy is not a quick fix.  Plasters fall off.  Instead, it’s a space for you to take the time to deepen your relationship.

Patience and compassion will be your companions as you do the work.

You’ll learn to focus and build on your talents and strengths and change negative cycles, which has meant that you were frequently triggering each other’s trauma.

In the couple counselling sessions, we start by looking into your current difficulties, individual histories and the story and experiences of the relationship. You can begin to see beyond the present-day problems to see what deeper needs the marriage has and is drawing your attention to for contemplation.

And looking at family, intergenerational stories and earlier intimate relationships gives an insight into differences in communication styles, values and even what being in a loving relationship means.

Tools to manage conflict and deepen communication are integral parts of the sessions.

Endings & Change

Above all, relationships go through phases that mark a change. And with change comes endings. Of course, an end doesn’t necessarily mean a breakup. But what it does mean is understanding what is different for the two of you. With that comes loss and griefCouple counselling provides space to express the sadness and anger that follows and explore what is next. 

The therapy integrates The Couples Institute Developmental Model and Re-Vision’s Couples in Search of Soul, which gives a transpersonal perspective that gives meaning to relationship dilemmas.

Wondering Whether It’s Time To End?

If your relationship is experiencing a crisis or it feels urgent to decide whether you want to end the marriage or recommit, Discernment Counselling might be what you need to support you more appropriately.  Click here to find out more.

Contact Me To Talk Today

Call 07535 864836 or click the button below for a FREE 15-minute consultation.  I will get back to you as soon as possible.