relationship difficulties

Relationship difficulties are not uncommon.  These can include problems knowing how best to initiate and sustain social interactions, coping with complicated family dynamics, experiencing a breakdown in important friendships or relationships, feeling worried or fearful of commitment or abandonment, managing the impact of infidelity, or feeling socially unassertive and potentially being taken advantage of.

What can help?

Several evidence-based therapeutic approaches are recommended for reducing relationship difficulties, and their impact.  These include Systemic Therapy, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Schema Therapy and Mentalisation-Based Therapy.  Decisions about which approach is more appropriate depend on the types of difficulty someone experiences, the factors that might contribute to difficulties developing or being maintained in the here and now, and the goals people would like to work towards.  It can also depend on whether someone chooses to have sessions alone (to focus on difficulties they experience from their perspective), or jointly with others, such as a partner or family members (to focus on the relationship or difficulties several people are experiencing, from everyone’s perspective).

We think it is important to develop a shared understanding of relationship difficulties, making sense of them in the context of life circumstances and events.  This can then inform choices about the strategies and approaches that could be most helpful.