The Horsforth Centre

Couples Counselling

Do you feel that your relationship is changing for the worst?
Do you find yourself wondering if you are coming to the end?
Does it feel a lot more trouble than it is worth?
Do you find you don’t understand your partner anymore?
Or feel that they don’t understand you?
Are you feeling confused about what you want?
If any of these sound familiar to you, you are not alone.  Many relationships experience difficulties from time to time.  The couple relationship is a key part of life and you may feel that you are now on shaky ground. Perhaps you are becoming confused about what you want from the relationship.

You know something is wrong but don’t know how to fix it

Relationship problems can be brought on by change in the relationship such as marriage, having children, retirement or new job patterns where it is difficult to know how to adapt and keep the relationship strong. Often there are issues such as money or debt, jealousy, sex or work relationships or you may feel as if you and your partner are leading separate lives. 
You may have tried to sort things out for yourself but with little success or have made some progress but feel you are that you are going around in circles and stuck at what to do next. Couples counselling can be your next step.
Couples counselling is for couples feel unable to resolve their issues alone and seek help in the form of couples counselling.  At The Horsforth Centre, we provide couples counselling for people who would like some help in finding a way forward.

How would couples counselling help us?

The purpose of couples counselling is to restore a healthy level of communication and functioning for couples experiencing distress in their relationship.  Whether married or not, many couples have difficulties, be this due to financial pressure, sexual problems, anger, illness, bereavement, affairs, or a breakdown in communication. 
Sometimes, couples feel unable to resolve their difficulties alone and seek outside help in the form of couples counselling.  Often, one or both partners may find it difficult to feel heard within the relationship, leading to feelings of loneliness and isolation.  Couples counselling can help each partner express their thoughts, feelings and wishes within a safe, confidential, non-judgemental environment. 

Couples counselling can help with:

Improving communication and intimacy
We learn how to communicate with our partners from our life experience but you may feel that you have nothing to say to your each other or are in a rut and have lost your intimacy. We can help you with looking at how you communicate and the effect on your intimacy and explore ways that can be more helpful and positive.

Reducing conflict in the relationship
Having more rows or upsetting conversations can be an indicator that something is wrong in the relationship. Couples counselling can help with understanding what triggers the arguments and being more honest about behaviour and emotions and how communicate in a more effective way.

Learning about how to respond to each other’s needs
As we get older and our lives change, then our needs may change. You will have different needs from those that you had when you were 18 or 25. External pressures can play a big part in setting those needs. Many people start to re-assess their lives when they reach their ‘big’ birthdays such 30s and 40s and50s leading to unexpected changes that can have a big impact on partners or families. Many couples have difficulties defining what those needs now are and adapting to the changes with the added difficulty of trying to explain those needs to their partner. Talking to a couples counsellor can help with looking at what your needs are, explaining them to your partner and looking at how you can each respond to the other’s needs.

Improving sex life
A reduction in sexual intimacy can be an indication that your relationship is having difficulties. The couples therapist can help you explore how to improve your sex life.

Parenting issues
Having children can be one of the biggest strains on a relationship. Living with little people who are entirely reliant on you can put enormous pressure on couples. You may yearn for the days where you could have a lie in on a weekend or could go out to the pub for a drink together without planning it weeks in advance.
Our expectations of how to bring up children is affected strongly by our own experiences growing up and can cause conflict where these expectations are different leading to anger and resentment or one half of the couple feeling undermined or undervalued.
Couples counselling can help with talking through expectations of parenting and developing a way of parenting as a unit together where each feels supported and the parent team is much more solid.

Dealing with the pressures of work or wider family relationships
Increasing work demands can have a big impact on relationships and families whether it is the amount of time spent together or people expected to be monitoring emails or accepting calls outside of work hours or travelling further to get to work.
Expectations from wider families can also add stress to a relationship; ageing parents, demands from in-laws, demands from your own wider family, family traditions etc.
Talking to one of our couples therapists can help with sorting out whether these demands are reasonable or not and how to manage them as a couple.

Working out what you want from the relationship and whether this means staying together
Getting to grips with what you really want from the relationship can be very tricky when surrounded by the demands of life ‘outside’ the relationship.
Inevitably, for some couples, they feel that they have got to the point where this is the last chance to sort things out or to split up because they want very different things from their lives and relationships.
Couples therapy can help facilitate this process, help with identifying what you are looking for and help you identify what your options are.

I am worried that starting couples counselling together may make our difficulties worse. 

Here at The Horsforth Centre, we endeavour to provide a caring and supportive setting to help you explore the issues causing you concern.  Couples counselling can be really positive and can facilitate the development of the relationship toward a desired level of functioning and communication. 

How many sessions will you need?

The number of sessions required depends very much on the problems you're facing. Your therapist will work with you to decide together how many sessions you think are necessary and progress will be reviewed at regular intervals.

Who at The Horsforth Centre provides Couples Counselling

Andy Williams, Lucie Stephenson, David Willetts and Ruth Williams can all provide Couples Counselling. Just click on their names to follow the link through to their page which explains more about how they work as counsellors.

We can also help with...