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Relationships are dynamic and can change over time. Couples therapy can help with developing as a couple, communication problems, and changes in sexuality.

How couples therapy works

Couples therapy focuses on addressing communication problems in a relationship. Good communication is a prerequisite for dealing with challenges in a relationship. Life exposes us to many challenges and situations that we haven’t dealt with before, so it’s natural that we react differently—sometimes more predictably, sometimes less.

Couples therapy can also provide insight into whether your relationship should continue. With a therapist, you can better understand each other and thus better manage the difficulties that arise.

What set our therapist apart was her genuine empathy and personal insight. Not only did she possess a deep understanding of neurodiversity, but she also shared personal experiences that resonated with us, creating an instant connection and fostering a sense of trust!

Benedetta Osarenk

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Couples therapy is recommended for everyone, even couples who have no immediate problems in their relationship. Therapy often strengthens the bonds of the relationship and can also prevent future challenges faced as a couple. Read more below or contact one of our therapists directly to see how we can help you in your particular situation.

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What is discussed in couples therapy?

Couples therapy is often associated with identifying problems in a relationship. However, it is equally essential to acknowledge and appreciate what is working well. During the therapy session, the therapist may encourage both parties to express their feelings about their relationship, including what is going well and what could be improved.

Another common question in couples therapy can be linked to the partners’ past lives. Previous relationships, childhood, and events that have affected you can be meaningful in understanding why a person behaves in a certain way during a current relationship. A greater understanding of this makes it easier for the therapist to provide the proper guidance in the future.

An essential element of couples therapy is getting to the point and ensuring the other party listens. In couples therapy, people practice expressing their thoughts, feelings and wishes without being interrupted. It also allows you to be listened to and gives you strategies to accept each other’s behaviour.

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8 FAQs about Couples Therapy

When should you seek help with couples therapy?

Here are some situations where couples’ therapy can help you: difficulty communicating, things have been quiet between you, the relationship requires a lot of energy, you have difficulty trusting each other, you are thinking about divorce, you have difficulty forgiving each other, and unsatisfactory sex life

How much does it cost to go to couples therapy?

At Lavendla, the therapists and coaches set the price, which you will find when booking. Couple therapy sessions are usually longer as more than one person needs to be heard. The time required for each session and how many sessions you need are decided in consultation with the therapist.

What is the purpose of couples therapy?

Couple therapy aims to help couples improve communication, resolve conflicts, and strengthen their relationships. It can also help increase their understanding of each other and create a more satisfying and sustainable relationship.

How long does the process of couples therapy take?

The timeframe for a couple therapy process varies depending on the complexity of the issues being addressed. A shorter period of therapy may be sufficient for some couples, while others may need several months of regular sessions. The therapist will discuss and suggest a suitable schedule based on your needs.

What methods and techniques are used in couple therapy?

Therapists use different methods and techniques based on the couple’s needs and goals. Standard methods include communication training, managing conflict resolution, emotional processing and exploring childhood patterns. The therapist may also provide homework and exercises to strengthen the relationship between sessions.

How can you prepare for couples therapy?

Preparing for couples therapy involves being open to reflecting on your thoughts, feelings and behaviours and being willing to listen to and support your partner. It can be helpful to think about your goals and expectations for therapy and be prepared to communicate openly with each other and the therapist.

What can you do if your partner refuses to engage in couples therapy?

If a partner is reluctant to participate in couples therapy, respecting their feelings and not forcing them into something they are uncomfortable with is essential. Instead, you can suggest discussing your concerns and exploring the possibility of seeking help later. Being open and nonjudgmental can help create an atmosphere of mutual respect.

What if couple therapy doesn’t work for us?

If couple therapy is not producing the desired results, it is essential to communicate this with your therapist. They can adjust the approach or suggest alternative strategies. Sometimes, therapy may not be the best solution for your specific situation. Exploring other options, such as individual therapy or other resources, may be valuable.

Relationship problems often encountered in couple therapy

Relationship problems can take different forms. Here are some problems that are more common.

  • Communication difficulties
  • Sexual difficulties
  • Infidelity
  • Lack of trust
  • Abuse
  • Divorce
  • Jealousy
  • Financial issues
  • Roles in the home
Lavendla – Making the difficult easier

3 Tips on couples therapy from our counsellor

  1. Investing in your relationship is crucial for a happy and fulfilling life. Love and intimacy are essential components of a relationship and can create a strong foundation to build. It is worth investing in your relationship if you feel a strong attraction to your partner. However, if you notice that communication is deteriorating, or your intimacy is not working satisfactorily, seeking the help of a couples therapist may be the best investment you make. A professional therapist can assist in finding joy, making it stronger than ever before.
  2. Learning to express yourself using “I” statements can be an effective way to communicate with your partner. Criticizing your partner’s flaws or shortcomings can harm the positive feelings you have for one another, and make them defensive. By taking responsibility for your own thoughts and feelings, you can create sustainable good communication. Rather than focusing on your partner’s behaviour, express your emotions and thoughts to them. ‘You’ statements like “You don’t listen!” can be replaced with ‘I’ statements like “Sometimes I don’t feel listened to, and it makes me sad.”
  3. It is not necessary to break up if a partner has been unfaithful. While many people believe that infidelity automatically means the end of a relationship, it can be caused by various factors that are not necessarily related to the relationship itself. Seeking the help of an experienced couple’s therapist can assist in identifying why the infidelity occurred. Open and honest communication is crucial, and a therapist can help the couple accept each other’s feelings and work toward healing. While the process may take time, attending couples therapy can be a valuable investment in the relationship.

Written by samantha

Sr. Samantha Pieterse is a registered psychiatric nurse who is deeply committed to mental health and well-being. Samantha brings a unique and valuable perspective to her role as an editor for Lavendla South Africa. She has worked in Government and Private mental healthcare institutions in Gauteng and her expertise ensures that the articles on our website are accurate and accessible. Samantha is dedicated to enhancing mental health awareness and education in South Africa.