Couple therapy works graphic

We need to talk about relationships.

Tavistock Relationships has conducted a YouGov survey of a nationally representative sample of people who are either married, living as married or in a civil partnership.

We wanted to find out how they felt about relationships. Read the full release here.

Why are relationships important?

A happy relationship provides positive couple and family dynamics, and has a profoundly positive effect on the mental health of adults & children. It also has been shown to improve children's life chances and can enhance other areas of our lives like work and physical health. 

We know that couple therapy works; evidence proves it.

At the end of last year, we published the largest ever study of couple therapy for adults showing that it is highly effective at improving relationships and reducing individual psychological distress.

You can read more here: The Effectiveness of Couple Therapy: Clinical Outcomes in a Naturalistic United Kingdom Setting’ by David Hewison, Polly Casey, & Naomi Mwamba, Tavistock Relationships, London, United Kingdom. (Download the PDF file here)

So what did we learn?

36 per cent would be persuaded

We need to #talkrelationships. We need more recognition of the positive role relationships play. We need to raise awareness of how couple counselling works to improve them.

64% of people across the UK in a long-term relationship said that, even if their relationship was in difficulty, they were unlikely to seek professional help.

This is despite that fact that, according to a recent Relate study, 1 in 5 couples considered their relationship to be in a distressed state.


Read the graphical summary of the Report here

Read our CEO, Andrew Balfour's blog on why there is a taboo amongst the public and how we need a fresh approach.

What do we want to achieve?

Our vision is: To ensure that effective relationship support is accessible to all. Because we know it helps.

The more we can spread the message that therapy works, the more people will feel comfortable to come and access help with their relationship that could transform their partnership or marriage.

Other key facts come out of our survey:

  • Seeing evidence of would persuade couples to come to seek help
  • The top 3 perceived benefits of Couple Therapy were; Help with Mental health, Improve Family life, Improve Children’s quality of life
  • Social media users were more aware of the link between couple relationship distress and mental health
  • There were regional differences in perceptions of seeking relationship help

We will be publishing an infographic of key findings here very shortly.

Report details:

  • 2,070 respondents from England, Scotland and Wales surveyed 29-30 June 2017
  • Cut by: age, social class, gender, marital status, region, parental status and social media usage
  • The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults (aged 18+).
  • Five questions asked seeking to understand people’s inclination to seek couple counselling, as well as their reasons for doing so, and any barriers preventing them

Voices of therapy

Here is a selection of quotes from our clients about how we have helped them:


”We knew we were in trouble but spent six years pretending it was OK. The children and jobs brought it all to a head. We knew something had to change and it was not enough for each of us to want it, we had to want to tackle it together, we are glad we did. The children were anxious about us, our friends were anxious about us; it was only taking that big step together to see a relationship counsellor that has helped us understand all the strain we’ve been living with and how we can both make things better”.
Louise and Dennis, London

How can I access relationship help?

You can book an appointment to see us here, if you are in London
Or if you live outside of London, we offer Online Therapy.

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buttons - question appointment 2015

Therapy Effectiveness

Couple counselling success stories and evidence that shows couple therapy works

We have completed the largest ever published naturalistic study of couple therapy (a piece of research evaluating our therapy).

This provides good evidence of the effectiveness of our approach to helping couples. Overall, clients who come to see us show significant increases their relationship satisfaction and distinct decreases in their psychological distress as the therapy progresses. These outcomes are assessed using questionnaires, known as psychometric measures, which are scientifically robust. Here our Director of Clinical Services, Limor Abramov, talks about the services we provide, the value of our consultations and the evidence that shows how effective our model of couple therapy is.

Dedicated to providing high-quality therapy

To provide the very best service we can to our clients, we not only evaluate our therapy through using well validated psychometric questionnaire measures but we ask clients about their experience of different aspects of the service they have received. Here are some examples of what our clients say:

Our results

Seeing more people: This year we held 17,445 sessions of counselling or therapy helping over 3,500 people. That number represents an increase of over 14% since the end of 2014, meaning we have expanded to meet demand for our work as more couples come forward to benefit from our services. Feedback shows that a large number of clients find our therapy a positive experience that helps them in some way to better understand themselves, their partners and their children.

Click on the plus symbols below to see graphs of our results.

  • Couple Satisfaction Index (CSI)

  • Helping with Mental Health

  • Who Do We Help?

Online therapy

online therapies

For couples outside London, we are able to offer secure and effective online therapy services via the webcam on your laptop or tablet/iPad. If you have any questions or want to talk to us about this service, please visit our Online Therapy page or call us on 020 7380 1960.

Our methods of assessing our effectiveness

Clients' level of psychological distress is monitored using the Clinical Outcomes in Routine Evaluation Outcome Measure (CORE-OM)1.Clients' relationship satisfaction is measured using the Couple Satisfaction Index (CSI)2.

  1. Barkham, M., Mellor-Clark, J., Connell, J.; Cahill, J. (2006). A core approach to practice-based evidence: a brief history of the origins and applications of the core-om and core system. Counselling and psychotherapy research, 6(1), 3-15.
  2. Funk, J.; Rogge, R., 2007. Testing the ruler with item response theory: increasing precision of measurement for relationship satisfaction with the couples satisfaction index. Journal of family psychology, 21, 572-583.

Read more …Therapy Effectiveness

How our clients reviewed our couples therapy service  

The results below are from our 2019 end of session, experience of service questionnaire, completed by over 100 clients:

Experience 2019 EOS Graphic 600px wide

Happy couple
  • Relationship Advice

As part of our commitment to evaluating the effectiveness of our services, we ask all clients to fill out routine questionnaires, looking at emotional wellbeing and relationship satisfaction,

Feedback gathered from our Experience of Service questionnaire since 2013 shows that clients who come to us are pleased with the service they receive and that the majority of people find their relationship and wellbeing improves.

94% felt that the therapy had improved their understanding of their partner.

"I felt I was going around in circles with my partner and now I feel like we are moving forward.  I feel acknowledged and heard due to having another person with us during challenging discussions.

92% felt that the therapy had improved their understanding of themselves.

"Although my husband was at first reluctant to attend, he now recommends that all his friends should go!  Really, really pleased with the outcome.  I learned a lot about myself."

90% of clients said that they would recommend our service to others.

"I would like to thank Tavistock Relationships for helping us during a challenging time in our lives.  The quality therapy we have received from our counsellor has enabled us to grow and we have found the experience to be invaluable."

"The experience has been so valuable, I am very grateful to our therapist – We are so much more positive about our future!  Thank you."


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