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The Value of the Therapeutic Hour

Published in Press Releases on April 8th 2020

Couple and family relationships are under strain at the moment. Many couples report feeling claustrophobic and trapped, not only physically in the confines of their home, but also emotionally, trapped inside with their partner with very little outside contact.

Marian O’Connor, Relationship Therapist at Tavistock Relationships, the internationally renowned charity providing couple therapy and parenting support, says:

“Enforced isolation has put couples back to the state where they were at the beginning of the relationship, when they were spending many hours together getting to know one another. However, this time around they feel they already know each other and they may no longer be curious, they may not be talking. In fact they may now be treating their partner more like a piece of furniture than someone with whom to share thoughts, emotions and news.

“For many couples it’s no longer just the two of them. They now have to juggle working from home, child care, home schooling their kids, and doing all the cooking and cleaning in a small space. This inevitably causes stress and anxiety, and in turn, conflict. The conflict can lead to feelings of guilt about exposing the children to the worst version of the parental relationship. In these difficult times, it can feel that there is nowhere to hide.

“Couples have to be able to talk about the logistics of this new situation in a clear, kind and thoughtful way. They also need to be able to talk about the heightened emotions they are likely to be feeling as the crisis endures - including fear, anxiety, loneliness, sadness, anger, and even despair at times.

“Here at Tavistock Relationships we are able to support isolated couples and families experiencing conflict through our online therapy service. Online therapy is available nationwide and can help a couple come together to talk about the issues they find hard to address. Strangely, sitting together in front of the computer and facing a third person (the therapist), can allow the couple time to think beyond the day to day irritations and business of life, and to get a wider picture about what is working and what is not.

“Containing it all in the therapeutic hour usually means couples are efficient at addressing what is really important to them, rather than leaving it until tension builds up and it becomes very hard to talk about. As part of the therapy, we work together to find ways to improve communication outside of the therapy sessions as well as within, leading to a better understanding and a reduction of anxiety.”

For more information about the online therapy services available at Tavistock Relationships, visit www.tavistockrelationships.org or call 020 7380 1960.


For more press information contact:

John Fenna, Head of Marketing & Communications
T: 07818 092771, E: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Paula Scott, PR consultant
T: 07932 740221, E: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Debbie Walker, PR Consultant
T: 077486 40577, E: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Notes to Editors

Established in 1948, Tavistock Relationships (www.TavistockRelationships.org) is a registered charity internationally renowned for delivering and developing advanced practice, training and research in therapeutic and psycho-educational approaches to support couples.

Working from two London bases (Hallam Street and New Street) as well as operating a nationally available online service, Tavistock Relationships has 120 professionals providing an effective and highly-regarded form of couples’ counselling and psychotherapy.

Last year (2018-2019), Tavistock Relationships held 20,734 therapy sessions, helping thousands of people with their relationships.

In 2016, Tavistock Relationships launched its Online Therapy Service to increase the accessibility of its clinical services to those living outside London. From 2018 to 2019, the number of therapy services delivered online doubled to a total of 1,170 sessions.

The charity received very positive feedback, with more than 93 per cent of its clients saying they would certainly rate the organisation’s services as good and would recommend its services.

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