I believe that effective couples counselling is a about:
Sometimes the couple will arrive at the outset with a sense of the problematic dynamics and, in any case, they will normally emerge out of the couple’s own description of how their relationship works - as well as how the couple relate to each other in the sessions themselves.
My main role is to:
To do this the counsellor needs to be seen by the couple as basically impartial - rather than as an ally of one or the other. However, the counsellor also needs to be strong enough to confront each of the couple with the role that they play in maintaining the problem dynamics and invite them to change.
Sometimes the issues being dealt with are relatively specific and the work can be completed through 4 to 8 sessions. In other cases, particularly if one of both of the couple are themselves struggling with deep-seated issues, the work needs to be longer-term than this.
Normally I meet couples on a weekly basis, at the same time each week, for a 50 minute session. Where this is not possible for the clients then we work around their schedule.