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Individual therapy with Ruth Calland
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Couple therapy with Ruth Calland

Couple therapy is about helping the relationship, rather than one partner or the other. The main idea is that a relationship is made by both, even if it doesn’t seem that way eg if one person seems more dominant, the other is still contributing in some way to the dynamic. This means that it’s not going to help much to try and find fault. The aim of couple therapy is to think about how things are, why they are that way, and how it is affecting both people. Quite often it helps simply because once you both feel heard, you don’t have to ‘prove your case’ all the time, and this frees you up a bit to listen to each other –something that might be impossible normally.

Quite often, as in individual therapy, it turns out that events from the past, or previous relationships, are having some influence on the present. It can be helpful to spend a bit of time thinking about this, as well as looking at the communication problems going on. Through therapy, couples can develop new ways of relating to each other, and the tools to manage difficult patches and rows more creatively.

Couple therapy begins with a consultation. This is a chance for both of you to put forward your side of things, and for me to think with you both about what the main problems are. We can look at what you’re hoping to get out of the therapy, and agree a general area for us to focus on initially. It is preferable if both come to the consultation, but sometimes just one partner comes, either because only they want to come, or because communication has broken down. The other partner may come to subsequent sessions and if so will be offered the opportunity to have a session on their own first, if they wish.

Couple therapy can be short-term or longer term. A weekly time that you can both attend will be set aside for you. The sessions are one hour long (60 minutes).

When you phone to make an appointment for couple counselling, I will offer you both the opportunity to speak to me before coming if you wish.