Many relationships encounter difficult patches, and how you and your loved one deal with conflict and relate to others can have a profound effect. Relationships – whether professional, platonic or romantic – can benefit from assistance from a qualified therapist. Certain parties within the relationship may be suffering from low self esteem, feel pressurised into behaving a certain way or could limit their social life in order to avoid consequences. If you have a relationship that is under strain and you’re having trouble rectifying the situation, getting some relationship counselling can help you strengthen your personal bonds and move forwards in a healthier, mutually respectful fashion.
Humans rely on relationships because we are a social animal which is dependent on pair-bonds with our romantic partners. How we cope with relationships and deal with the people closest to us is largely learned during our childhood, when the integral relationships with our parents form a blueprint for future interactions. Whether we’re interacting with a close friend, family member, colleague or romantic partner, we’re always constrained by the assumptions and habits we developed in our youth. These deep-seated issues can be effectively deconstructed by a counsellor.
Indentifying a negative or damaging relationship can be particularly challenging, especially if you’re involved in it yourself. It’s important to consider several key points when you’re looking at a relationship, whether professional or personal. If you or another party feel as though you are being pressurised and held back, or if you feel stuck in a repeating pattern, your relationship may be in trouble. You might limit your social life to avoid consequences (avoiding the jealousy of a partner, for example), feel anxious or depressed and think “here we go again” when a conflict is stirring in a familiar pattern. These symptoms, particularly if combined with low self esteem, are indicative that psychotherapy might be a viable option.
There are a few different options for therapy to help with a troublesome relationship. Intimate relationships can benefit from couples counselling, whereby the relationship is considered the client rather than any one individual within it. Family sessions are also an option, and helps members of the family express their feelings and work through any concerns in a supportive environment. If getting your loved ones or colleagues to consent to psychotherapy is difficult, then you should consider individual counselling to help yourself through the tough time.
Therapists can help with many different aspects of a relationship. The counsellor will be able to spot the unhealthy aspects of communication or interaction which are affecting the relationship, and he or she will help you move to healthier, more positive methods. More effective communication will be encouraged, and you’ll learn new skills to help you better manage issues within the relationship when they arise. In short, any damaging or self-defeating relationship habits that either party picked up during childhood will be addressed and replaced with a better alternative approach.
Determining whether you and your loved one, friend or colleague needs to improve your relationship through counselling can be very difficult. Disagreement is normal, but if it persists to a point where one party feels trapped or has low self esteem, something more seriously unhealthy may be going on. We know that addressing relationship problems is challenging, and we’re here to help you.
For more information about our costs for relationship counselling services please see the about us page.