Couples Counselling Twickenham

At Couples Counselling Twickenham, I focus on relationship counselling whether you are married, cohabiting or in a partnership. I help couples as they recover from a crisis, a sexual betrayal or ongoing conflict. Firstly, I offer a solution-focused approach, which helps you regain better communication and understanding. Secondly, I encourage you to take responsibility, rather than try to change your partner. Thirdly, I help you develop new patterns of behaviour that help you restore closeness and intimacy.

Even, in loving, caring relationships there may be underlying issues that haven't been addressed. When relationships stop working, your mental health suffers. Often, married couples experience the pressures of work, family and money, which get in the way of their relationship.  As a consequence, you may forget to support each other in a crisis. Slowly, as the resentment builds, you stop trusting each other and begin to argue. You may also struggle after feeling betrayed or abandoned by your partner. Once you are locked into a cycle of conflict it never seems to end. At this point, no one knows what to do. If you cannot resolve you differences, one of you may shut down, leaving your partner feeling excluded, or rejected. After a long breakdown in your relationship, you may blame each other. However, you will only make progress, if you learn to listen and respect your partner.

This is where I step in to help you make small, realistic changes to boost your relationship. Couples counselling helps you find common ground. For example, I can help you develop more trust and compassion to heal old wounds. Moreover, I can help you resolve conflict by respecting each other's boundaries and expressing yourselves more openly. While, being honest can leave you feeling exposed, it also leads to better understanding. In addition, you will be less likely to judge each other.

I offer Couples Counselling Twickenham at £95/session

What happens in couples counselling?

Whilst couples counselling is rewarding, it can also be challenging. This is why relationships become stuck. Sometimes, you may have different opinions and values, which cause conflict. As a couple, you may find it hard to talk, or trust each other. When you ignore these problems, this can lead to petty arguments, while you avoid tackling the big issues. However, you both need to find mutual respect and understanding before you can move forward.  Slowly, I encourage you to take responsibility and not blame it on each other. In addition, I will offer you guided interactions to practice during therapy and at home.

At Couples Counselling Twickenham, I help you restore empathy and understanding.  I have a positive view of diversity in relationships, whatever background you come from. As a skilled counsellor, I'm here to listen and guide you through the process, without prejudice. I can also help you with the changes, you find too difficult. For instance, you will develop better listening skills and more honest communication. In addition you will learn how to negotiate your way through a conflict, by encouraging your partner, rather than undermining each other. As trust and acceptance grows, you begin to work as a team.

This is why I believe counselling can help you develop shared values and learn from each other. Over the years, I have learned to treat the relationship, rather than the individuals. You are both my 'client'. So whether you are married, cohabiting or in a civil partnership you can work through your issues together without prejudice.


What are the aims of relationship counselling?

As a couples counsellor in Twickenham, I take a practical approach. Firstly, I help you address old patterns of behaviour and improve communication. Secondly as you move from codependency to freedom, we will look at how love and intimacy can be revitalized. Finally, we will practice positive ways of interacting, as I help you both engage in active listening and constructive patterns of relating. As a result, you will focus on supporting each other, without making painful compromises or losing independence. For example, developing compassion, as well as a better understanding of how your partner feels and thinks.

Indications of relationship problems:
  • communication breakdown
  • one or both partners have betrayed each other
  • sexual intimacy has come to an end or is causing problems
  • arguments and conflict continue without resolution
  • domestic violence erupts between partners
  • physical or mental health problems recur
  • the couple’s bond of trust is eroded or broken

We will look at how conflict takes root in your relationship. I will help you identify repetitive patterns of behaviour, which you learned from you parents may have re-emerged in adulthood. Over time, you will unlock these patterns and learn constructive ways of dealing with conflict.

However, as a couple you may have come to the conclusion you want to separate or divorce. I can help you do this in a constructive way through mediation. At first, you may want to see if trust can be repaired. Otherwise, mediation may help couples to separate with less hostility. I am a counsellor with the skills to provide a safe place for exploring these issues. I can also help you with separation or divorce counselling so your relationship doesn't have to end in destructive behaviour and messy disagreements. If you can separate with respect, it will help you communicate constructively, especially where children are concerned.

Why choose Couples Counselling Twickenham?

It's quite normal for your relationship to suffer over time. You may find the tensions of everyday life wear you down as intimacy and sex begin to fade. As your affection turns to complacency, it increases the likelihood of conflict between you. However, everyone views conflict differently, depending on your values and childhood experiences. While one of you turns to sadness and despair, the other may see conflict as a way of finding resolution. You can then move forward and reset the boundaries.

Sometimes if you have both become co-dependent, you may feel insecure as separate individuals. You may lose your sense of identity. While one person becomes clingy and needy, the other becomes controlling. You may hope your partner can make-up for pain in earlier relationships, but this is unrealistic. Also you may want to be rescued by their partner, but this comes at the cost of freedom. Slowly, your boundaries become merged. As you develop skilled listening and negotiation, you build more realistic expectations. As a counsellor, I guide you towards a satisfying acceptance of each other's differences. I am there to help you even if you want to end a relationship. You can explore these issues in a safe, confidential way without fear of attack.

Couples seek counselling:
  • there has been a betrayal of trust, an affair, or deception
  • communication leads to conflict, confusion or anger
  • intimacy or sexual desire is missing
  • arguments and bickering go on unresolved
  • one person is seeking separation or divorce

What about conflict?

Sometimes couples may believe that conflict is bad in a relationship, but it's unrealistic to expect love to endure without arguments. Everyone enters a relationship with their own set of values, morals and beliefs. Therefore both people must be able to tolerate disagreement and feel their voices are being heard. Autonomy and freedom are the cornerstones of a healthy relationship. Otherwise people feel alienated and lost.

When couples are no longer able to communicate – mistrust and anger may surface. Occasionally, it may feel like one partner is dominating the other. One person asserting their needs, while the other remains passive. What's important is setting the right boundaries, while promoting mutual respect and understanding. Arguments themselves can be a healthy part of any relationship, if it encourages growth and change. Of course, anger can be destructive and lead to violence, so I try to help couples understand the boundaries and ‘rules of engagement’.

The causes of relationship problems:
  • a lack of willingness to compromise or negotiate
  • the feeling that one partner has all the control and power
  • physical or mental illness can be a burden for both partners
  • the birth of a child can leave one partner feeling abandoned
  • an affair can leave a partner feeling betrayed and rejected
  • interference from family and relatives
  • alcohol, drug or gambling dependency
  • an unexpected life crisis

Independence in relationships

The pleasure in any relationship is in wanting to be intimate, rather than feeling needy or dependent. True intimacy is as much about being separate, as it is about being together. This is why identity and self-respect are important. If they are absent you may want to consider how couples counselling can help:

  • couples can learn ways of managing conflict
  • destructive patterns of relating can be identified
  • communication skills can be developed and improved
  • empathy and intimacy is encouraged
  • exploring the impact of life changes
  • abuse and domestic violence is acknowledged
What about sex?

For most of us, sex can be a source of pleasure and bonding in a relationship. However, if you struggle with sex this can leave one partner feeling abandoned, or rejected. If you have a loss of sexual desire this can be an early sign of unresolved issues between couples. You may have experienced past traumas. Sexual abuse in childhood, for example, can leave deep scares, but remain unexpressed in your relationship. Other sexual problems may have a physical or medical cause, but can often be addressed with a counsellor.

If I have covered any issues you wish to explore then arrange an appointment. Please meet with me at Couples Counselling Whitton. You can also read my articles on couples counselling at Counselling Directory