Welcome To Leeds Psychotherapy

What is Couples' Therapy?

When two people are experiencing difficulties in their relationship it is usually best that both partners attend psychotherapy together. I believe this is beneficial because the process between you comes alive in the session. Therefore great awareness can be gained through reflecting on the experience you are having at that moment. This information is invaluable and can really help a couple gain new insight into their relatnional style and move through their tension or conflict.

But why do couples who were once madly in love now find themselves experiencing difficulties?

There are many complex answers to this question all of which are beyond the remit of this web page. But to summarise; when you enter into a relationship you are essentially entering into two relationships:

The conscious relationship and the unconscious relationship.

When we are in the conscious relationship everything seems fine. You feel intimate, close and loving towards each other. This phase can last a long time and is sometimes referred to as the honeymoon period. Eventually we meet the unconscious relationship which is when the nature of the relationship changes.

In the unconscious relationship the things that we once loved and admired about our partner may now be the same things that we most dislike about them. In this phase we are experiencing our partners as a disappointment to us. We are noticing the differences between us instead of the similarities. Often couples experience a power struggle, anger towards each other or a wounded relationship.

If we look closely at what is happening in our relationship we may realise that we are experiencing all the unresolved, unconscious conflicts from our past. We are bringing our original family culture into our present relationship and it isn't fitting.

Our original family culture becomes a blueprint for how relationships work but our partner's blueprint is different to ours and we are really feeling the difference. This difference often causes further stress to our psychology which may deepen the rift with our partner.

You may be wondering how couples can get out of this conflict and reconnect in their relationship.

Well it is true that some relationships do not survive this breakdown. But this pain is also an opportunity to change the relationship, heal past wounds and find a way to be in the present with each other in a loving and accepting manner. Couples who resolve their relationship difficulties experience a deeper and more satisfying love.

Soren Kierkegaard expresses this well:
Perfect love means to love the one through whom one became unhappy

Couples Therapy can help us:

  • Reduce conflict in our relationship
  • Overcome power struggles
  • Rediscover our reciprocal love
  • Improve our communication
  • Find new ways of expressing our needs
  • Learn how to respond to our partner's needs
  • Overcome our hurt, resentments and disappointments
  • Improve the quality of our relationships
  • Overcome repetitive relational patterns
  • Get out of our stuckness
  • Grow and develop together
  • Improve our sexual relationship
  • Deal with issues of child rearing
  • Deal with a self-limiting relationship
  • Overcome blame and guilt
  • Work out if we should stay together
  • Increase our intimacy
  • Thank you for visiting my website

    Hello and welcome to the Leeds Psychotherapy website. My name is Michael Hartley. I am a qualified psychotherapist and have been in private practice since 1996. I offer psychotherapy for individuals and couples.

    What you can find on this website

    This website has more information about what psychotherapy is and how it may help you. You can also find information about the types of issues you can address in psychotherapy.

    Also I have written a brief autobiography so you have some knowledge about me and what my experience and level of expertise is. I have incuded this because I believe choosing the right therapist is a crucial ingredient in the success of psychotherapy. I hope this information is of use to you. If you want to discuss anything further or want to arrange initial consultation then email me at michael@leedspsychotherapy.co.uk

    I hope you find what you are looking for!

    Current News: I am unavailable to accept new clients at the moment.
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